Metascore
68

Generally favorable reviews - based on 24 Critics What's this?

User Score
5.8

Mixed or average reviews- based on 549 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: After a young, middle class couple moves into what seems like a typical suburban “starter” tract house, they become increasingly disturbed by a presence that may or may not be somehow demonic but is certainly most active in the middle of the night. (Paramount Pictures)
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 18 out of 24
  2. Negative: 1 out of 24
  1. With its this-is-really-happening vibe, Paranormal Activity scrapes away 30 years of encrusted nightmare clichés. The fear is real, all right, because the fear is really in you.
  2. 83
    The film loses some of its grimy verisimilitude toward the end, but it’s nevertheless a surprisingly effective low-budget shocker with a sensibility as current as the latest viral videos, yet rooted in the suggestive, less-is-more atmospherics of Val Lewton.
  3. 80
    Grounded by strong performances by newcomers Featherston and Sloat, who pretty much have the movie to themselves, Paranormal Activity, which demands to be seen in a crowded theater, is refreshingly blood-free.
  4. Reviewed by: Tirdad Derakhshani
    75
    An impressive, not entirely successful exercise in minimalist filmmaking.
  5. I’ve never seen a movie that so cunningly exploits our anticipation.
  6. Reviewed by: Kevin Lally
    60
    "Paranormal" ultimately does deliver in a way that "Blair Witch" never did, but its achingly slow buildup is a test not just of an audience's patience but the power of hype surrounding the latest alternative scary movie.
  7. 0
    Don't believe the hype: Paranormal Activity may be a lot of things, but the words "scary" and "movie" are not among them. It is instead nothing more or less than an excruciatingly tedious YouTube gag cleverly marketed to go viral in the broadest and most box office-friendly way.

See all 24 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. KyleH
    Jan 4, 2010
    10
    If you think Saw is the greatest horror series of our decade, this movie isn't for you. If you think a horror movie has to have blood, If you think Saw is the greatest horror series of our decade, this movie isn't for you. If you think a horror movie has to have blood, gore, and in your face action then this movie isn't for you. If you think Inglorious Bastards was nothing but boring dialog, then this movie is not for you. If you enjoy movies that are based on building suspense then you will love this movie. If you're tired of all the crappy remakes that are plaguing the horror genre (Friday the 13th, The Stepfather, Halloween, etc.) then you will find this movie refreshing. Expand
  2. ZachL
    Oct 25, 2009
    10
    Scariest movie I have ever seen, regardless of what others say. Yes, it does just build for ninety minutes, but SO DOES EVERY OTHER MOVIE Scariest movie I have ever seen, regardless of what others say. Yes, it does just build for ninety minutes, but SO DOES EVERY OTHER MOVIE EVER MADE! Go see this movie, you will not be disappointed. Expand
  3. Aug 16, 2010
    9
    the scariest film i have watched. scarier than blair witch, and the only film to ACTUALLY scare me. if you liked blair witch, you'll likethe scariest film i have watched. scarier than blair witch, and the only film to ACTUALLY scare me. if you liked blair witch, you'll like this. its a film everyone should see. a TRUE horror, not like the grudge, or those excuse-of-a-horror films they seem to be releasing more and more often nowdays. Expand
  4. Oct 21, 2011
    6
    For a very low budgeted film, Paranormal Activity proves to be a great horror film. Though the film has no story, but it still has greatFor a very low budgeted film, Paranormal Activity proves to be a great horror film. Though the film has no story, but it still has great horror themes.
    Pros:
    Good Horror themes
    Cons:
    Weak Dialogue No Story
    Expand
  5. Jan 23, 2015
    3
    The word "horror" seems to be tossed around a lot in these times. If you are looking for thrill, suspense, emotion, and gut-bustingThe word "horror" seems to be tossed around a lot in these times. If you are looking for thrill, suspense, emotion, and gut-busting excitement, just buy a laser toy for your cat instead. Expand
  6. DanM.
    Oct 16, 2009
    2
    Movie is a ripoff, booring lowbudget movie,worst movie I have ever seen,I don,t get how people rated this movie good?
  7. Eric
    Oct 10, 2009
    0
    This movie is slow moving, low budget version of the Blair Witch Project. Let down on all levels... Save your money. This movie is a rental at best.

See all 302 User Reviews

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