Moview Review: Paranormal Activity 2

Added Oct 27, 2010, Under: Film

Detroit Chic Rating: ** out of *****

Perhaps you’ve read my review of Paranormal Activity 2 and recall how I mentioned that some horror films are fun if you like the genre, but are most definitely two star flicks?  Well Saw 3D (Rated R, Lionsgate) is one of those flicks.

In time for Halloween, the popular horror/torture franchise Saw returns with plenty of blood and gristle to boot.  And this time it brings a new trick — 3D glasses.  But the 3D effect actually isn’t what makes this film a bit better than the middle Saws (say Saw II or Saw III).  Rather, a more focused plot helped the story make a bit more sense and at times make you feel like you’re actually following a comprehensible plot (*gasp*).

The 3D effects really aren’t that amazing.  There’s the occasional illusion of traps coming at you, but this gets a whole lot less scary after being played out a time or two.  And the “blood/guts spraying at you” effect isn’t exactly worth the $3-$5 either.  Herein lies the biggest strike against Saw 3D — you can pay $13-$15 for a ticket due to the 3D glitter.  And it’s really not worth the extra fee.

It's the same old Saw torture trap formula, this time with a bit more cohesive plot and 3D gloss.

It's the same old Saw torture trap formula, this time with a bit more cohesive plot and 3D gloss. (Image courtesy of YouTube/Lionsgate)

Still if you found past Saw films palatable or at least amusing in a corny sort of way, you probably will sorta like the latest Saw 3D.  In that sense, despite the higher price, at least it’s something fun to do.  I’d certainly recommend Paranormal Activity 2, especially for those who didn’t watch the first film, before I would Saw 3D.

But Saw 3D manages a bit of surprising edginess, wit, and plot.  That said weak acting, the seemingly incomprehensible stupidity at times of characters, melodrama, and lack of originality drags this movie from a few stars to a couple.  There’s no new ground tread here, just a journey down a well-beaten path by a veteran guide.

At the end of the day, for Halloween movies, you could do a lot worse than Saw 3D.

The only thing utterly horrible about Saw 3D is its subtitle — “The Final Saw”.  If there’s one thing we should know from horror films by now, it’s that it is NEVER the final film of a popular series.  Don’t buy that line — if anything Saw 3D guarantees years of gristly cinematic torture devices courtesy of Jigsaw’s disciples in years to come.