Using a special camera that can see spirits, a family must protect their daughter from an evil entity with a sinister plan.
Despite a fairly mediocre view on the series I was actually a bit hyped for Paranormal Activity 6. Despite being a loose spin-off PA: The Marked Ones was a pretty fun movie and proved that the series still had some life in it. With all the hype being that this will be the final Paranormal Activity (for now) and promises of answers this had the chance to be great. A movie that not only answers some questions but scare us in new ways that we can see the Ghost Dimension. Sounds great, right? Unfortunately we don’t get that movie.
Instead we get a film about a whole new family who happen to find old tapes of Katie and Kristi using their evil powers. The only connection is that Toby the demon is attacking them. Granted I found myself liking the family more than most horror movies. A bit generic but all decently acted, particularly the daughter Leila. For a kid actor in a found footage movie Ivy George is just good enough of an actor to keep this whole thing afloat. Unfortunately I can’t say the same for Toby. The movie’s main gimmick is that we would finally see Toby via a special camera. As it turns out the demonic presence has looked like the symbiote from Spider-man took over Groot. I can assure you that isn’t as cool as it sounds. Not helping matters is that seeing Toby ruins a lot of the scares. All of the jump scares (PA’s bread and butter) are telegraphed by this black goop hanging from chandeliers or running at things.
My other issue with the film can be represented with one omission, the movie didn’t have Katie in it. This hero turned villain has been around since the beginning and is the closest to series has to a physical villain. She’s the series personified. So in the final film of the series what does she do? She is name checked as the person that sold Fleege family their home. No appearance, no plot point, just casually mentioned. Which, in hindsight, is better than the characters from The Marked Ones who don’t even get mentioned. For someone who has invested themselves in the crazy world they’ve created, it’s a bit of a drag.
A bummer because I don’t think this is a terrible movie. Throughout the movie we get some scares without the Toby goop and they still work. There’s also a cool bit where Katie from the past interacts with the family in the present and it’s an eerie little scene. In fact any time they play with the concept of time is pretty fun. While it all feels familiar it’s all done quite well. It’s leagues better when compared to Paranormal Activity imitators like The Gallows or The Pyramid.
As what is supposed to be the final movie of the series it’s a major bummer. While the whole “you can see the Ghost Dimension” gimmick is neat in theory it is never used well. They scares are the same as they have ever been except now the suspense is killed since we can see it. It leaves more questions than answers and even drops the ball with basic PA stuff like having Katie or even witches involved.
As a run of the mill found footage movie though, it’s alright. The characters are generally likable and in a surprising turn they found the one decent child actress in Hollywood. If this were just a spin-off ala The Marked Ones or an original movie entirely it would be a an above average affair. With the hype and push of it being the final movie though? Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension is a major let down. If they do decide to continue the series (which I’m totally calling) maybe get rid of ponytail preacher.