Paranormal Activity 3 (Blu-ray / DVD)



Paranormal Activity 3 on Blu-ray and DVD (click for larger image)Starring Katie Featherston, Sprague Grayden, Christopher Nicholas Smith, Lauren Bittner, Chloe Csengery, Jessica Tyler Brown, Dustin Ingram

Directed by Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman

Distributed by Paramount Home Entertainment


It never ceases to amaze me how far the Paranormal Activity franchise has come. When the original appeared many years ago, sequels were unthinkable. No one could ever recapture that crazy lightning in a bottle, right? We've never been happier to be proven wrong. Paranormal Activity 3 is every bit as good and scary as the original, and that, my friends, is no easy feat.

These movies have a huge fan base, and rightly so. They always give the audience just enough information to get them by while leaving many things open to interpretation. That's the main reason why when these flicks come to home video in unrated extended cuts, fans are hungry to see what's new or what's been explained. Does this new cut of Paranormal Activity 3 bring anything fresh to the table? Are there any more clues for the next film? Clocking in ten solid minutes longer than its theatrical cousin, the answer is both yes and, as always, playfully no.

For those not in the know, Paranormal Activity 3 is a prequel to Paranormal Activity 2, which was for the most part a prequel to the original Paranormal Activity. The setting of this third chapter is 1988, and in it we're introduced to Julie (Bittner) and Dennis (Smith), the proud parents of young Katie (Csengery) and Kristi Rey (Brown) (the child counterparts of their adult selves). Here we get to see, to borrow a line from the movie's one-sheet, "how the activity began." For my in-depth film review of Paranormal Activity 3, click here. This review is only going to cover the information we know that you're looking for: the new stuff and how it affects the film and the franchise.

One of the most beloved characters in this latest chapter of the lives of one really screwed up family is no doubt Dennis' assistant, Randy (Ingram), and the good news is we get more of him. The couple of added scenes of Randy and Dennis together further flesh out what was already a rich and believable relationship and, in turn, make these two friends all the more likable. But this unrated version isn't all sunshine and roses by any means. Several new scenes have been added back into the film that we saw glimpses of in the film's numerous trailers, along with some never-before-seen goodies. The highlights include being able to see what happens when the girls engage in a game of "Bloody Mary" and also an ultra spooky scene with Kristi Rey that adds some real payoff to a moment in the theatrical release when the little girl was playing with the evil presence, known here as Toby, in the middle of the night.

The ending remains exactly the same; however, if you use the slow motion feature on your DVD or Blu-ray player to advance frames one-at-a-time, within the static before the end credits, there's a single frame of film that depicts Dennis and Julie's bedroom catching fire, starting with the bed. This frame is present in the theatrical cut as well. I only mention it because now you can see it via pause. Significance? Clue for Part 4? That's anyone's guess.

As always, in terms of the Blu-ray and DVD, of course the picture and sound quality favor high definition, but DVD owners don't have anything to worry about either. With a movie like this, the rawer it looks, the better.

When it comes to special features, once again we're left with a very skimpy package, which seems to be par for the course with this franchise. The lost scenes (though hysterical) are pretty much nothing more than Dennis jump-scaring Julie and a public access trailer for Dennis' videography business.

This new cut of the film feels really good and plays exceptionally well, piling on a few more laughs as well as a fresh batch of new spine-tingling spookery. If you liked Paranormal Activity 3 in theatres, you'll love it at home. Except of course when you wake up in the middle of the night because you - for whatever reason - now hear every single noise your house is making as if it were being amplified by the loudest speaker set in the world. Still, that's half the fun! Bring on Part 4!

Blu-ray Special Features

  • Original theatrical version of the film
  • Unrated version of the film
  • Lost Tapes

    DVD Special Features

  • Unrated version of the Film
  • Digital copy of unrated version—compatible with iTunes® and Windows Media

    Film:

    4 1/2 out of 5

    Special Features:

    2 out of 5

    Discuss Paranormal Activity 3 in our comments section below!




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    DavidFullam's picture

    Saw this last night with some friends. When it was over, we all basically had a look of "What a piece of shit this was" on our faces.


    Submitted by DavidFullam on Sun, 11/18/2012 - 2:45pm.
    James Coker's picture

    LifeMi Insidious is a love or hate kind of horror film


    Submitted by James Coker on Tue, 01/17/2012 - 3:15pm.
    LifeMi's picture

    Quentin Tarantino's list of the best/worst of 2011 came out and he listed PA3 as one of the worst films of the year. But he also hated Insidious, so I can't totally knock his list.


    Submitted by LifeMi on Tue, 01/17/2012 - 12:35pm.

    Really? Five knives for this film? This was one of the few times I nearly walked out of a movie, and the ending was bullsh*t! I respect your opinion UC, but we clearly had very different experiences of this film... In saying that, I'll go and see PA:4 because I'm just hoping that they get it right to give me the unique buzz and thrill I got with the first.


    Submitted by PelusaMG on Mon, 01/16/2012 - 11:22pm.
    moderator No, 4 1/2. I love this flick
    Steve Barton's picture

    No, 4 1/2. I love this flick and the new extended cut rocks.


    Submitted by Steve Barton on Tue, 01/17/2012 - 12:32am.

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