Steve Says Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones Is Predictably Unscary

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It’s so hard to find a good horror movie these days.

Here we go again – the 5th installment in the curiously popular series. Although this one is not Paranormal Activity 5 (that comes later this year). I have to admit that I have not seen an installment of the series since part 2. I thought the original was fantastic. It was an edge of your seat thriller and it was something that we hadn’t seen done for a while. It had a production budget of $450,00 and it made $194 million worldwide. It finished at 83% on Rotten Tomatoes. The second installment fared almost as well as it took in $177 million worldwide, but it took a dip to 58% on Rotten Tomatoes. Ever since then we have had to pay for the success of the original.

This time around we have a group of kids (mostly Jessie and Carlos). Two of which seem to be antagonizing a witch of some sort. After they have a smaller child knocking at the door, she vows that something will happen to Jessie. Well, predictably, Jessie wakes up one day with a strange mark on his arm –  it seems as though he has been “marked”. During the first 30 – 45 min of the movie there is more comedy than anything else. I am not ashamed to admit that I laughed several times. The only thing that was remotelyscary up until that point was the witch that threatens Jessie and the insanely annoying shaking camera.

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After Jessie discovers that he is a marked man, he finds out that he has some super powers. He can lean back without actually leaning on anything and still keep his balance. He can block an attempted assault with a baseball bat by simply sticking his hand out and grabbing it. He can also fling grown men without working up a sweat.

Things get a bit more weird when Jessie begins talking to a child’s toy looking for answers. That toy? The world famous Simon toy! You remember that, right? The circular toy that would blink in different colors and you would have to follow it and match the patterns. Yes, that one. The colors were red, green, yellow and blue. Let’s follow the predictable part of this movie. The questions had to be of the “yes or no” variety. You’ve got it. Red meant no and green meant yes. Yawn.

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There were several times throughout the movie when the boys ventured into the witch’s home and were really just begging for something bad to happen. All of the drama really begins to unfold when the two bring a couple of girls back to the witch’s house and someone is not too happy about it.

Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones didn’t do much well. The story was subpar and it lacked the most important thing that a horror flick should have – scary moments. I don’t believe that I saw one scene that shocked me or wasn’t 100% expected. I think the best part if this movie was the ending. The film might have been able to pass for a comedy through the first 30 minutes or so. One thought that I did have throughout the movie was that perhaps I have been spoiled by The Conjuring. It is tough to find a good horror flick. It is very early in the year and I have a feeling that I will be waiting a little while longer.

Final Word – 1 1/2 stars