Thursday, 29 September 2011

Episodically 50

Reminding me of another movie I can't remember the name of nor find a review of it if I did one, this movie is part of a series. By which I mean, this is presented as part of a "reality" paranormal series, and something actually real happens to make everything go wrong.

In this case, "Paranormal Investigators" is coming up to episode 50, and gets a chance to do some debunking at a mental hospital I think. Or maybe a criminal asylum. Some wacked out place anyway. They are joined (reluctantly) by a group of religious believers who are here to prove that there is life after death, just as the P.I.s are trying to prove otherwise.

But, of course, there really are spooks. And this movie works well for the first half of it. It builds up a good atmosphere, and I realised during this movie why that worked, and why it worked for Japanese movies, but why it failed miserably for other "reality" movies, such as Paranormal Activity 2 and the like: the audience was scared by being shown the horror while the characters weren't. We get to see the ghosts and the nurse get up and wander around, so we know these things are going on, while the characters are peering at electronic devices and spouting off crap physics to explain everything. That gets the atmosphere going. (In PA2, the characters saw the eerie when the audience did, so the build up wasn't the same.)

However, the movie goes off the rails in the second half, where they suddenly start explaining the supernatural of it all, the movie really seems like it was a longer movie with scenes cut out, as it jumps around a lot. Not that it didn't always have a problem in that arena, with scenes changing tone from one shot to the next.

A lot budget piece that probably would have worked had they shot and compiled a complete movie.


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