Continuing the annual tradition of quickly whipping up a found footage horror flick just in time for Halloween, the Paranormal Activity franchise is back with a fresh installment and a creepy trailer to tease its thrills.
Little was known about Paranormal Activity 4 before this spot, but it's now clear where the film falls in the surprisingly dense PA mythology. The second movie prequelized the first haunting — our main, posesssed character Katie murdering her husband — heading to her sister Kristi's house to lay waste, then kidnapping Kristi's baby son and vanishing into the night. PA3 took the story even further back in time, chronicling Katie and Kristi's first encounters with the spirit world and introducing the twist of cult activity into the ambiguous motivations of the ghosts. Now we have Paranormal Activity 4, which jumps ahead in time and throws new characters into the mix, including a teenage blonde at the center of the action (check that horror trope off PA's to do list). But the Katie story isn't over yet — as title cards make clear, "all the activity led to this."
Per usual, the Paranormal Activity 4 trailer keeps us in the dark plot-wise, but gives us an idea of how directors Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman (Paranormal Activity 3) continue to play with the found footage. Now that the story is back in modern times, the duo stretches the style to include Skype calls and Webcams. They're not breaking new ground — Webcam, an absolutely creepy short film, and the Sundance breakout horror film V/H/S (which, coincidentally, was shot and premiered well before production on PA4 was underway) both used the tech-friendly technique. But it's new to PA and should help keep Paranormal Activity 4 audiences on their toes.
Check out the trailer and watch for the fourth round of ghoulish madness when it hits theaters Oct. 19, 2012.
Follow Matt Patches on Twitter @misterpatches
[Photo Credit: Paramount Pictures]