• Released
  • September 25, 2009
  • (special screenings on Thurs., 10/21, prior to midnight screenings of 'Paranormal Activity 2')
  • R , 1 hr 26 min
  • Horror
91

Entertainment Weekly

By Owen Gleiberman
With its this-is-really-happening vibe, Paranormal Activity scrapes away 30 years of encrusted nightmare clichés. The fear is real, all right, because the fear is really in you.
Full Review
88

Chicago Sun-Times

By Roger Ebert
An ingenious little horror film, so well made it's truly scary.
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75

Rolling Stone

By Peter Travers
With a $15,000 budget too puny to empty a petty-cash drawer, the no-frills Paranormal Activity comes packed with thrills.
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75

San Francisco Chronicle

By Peter Hartlaub
Succeeds in its modest goals of building tension slowly and generating a handful of legitimate scares. A few people in the audience were laughing during the first half of the film. No one was laughing during the long walk out of the theater.
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75

Philadelphia Inquirer

An impressive, not entirely successful exercise in minimalist filmmaking.
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75

USA Today

By Claudia Puig
No-frills chills are what Paranormal Activity offers in unrelenting supply.
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75

New York Post

By Lou Lumenick
Like legendary producer Val Lewton in the '40s, director Oren Peli, who shot "Paranormal" in seven days in his own home, understands that what's most frightening is what you don't see but merely suggested.
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60

The Hollywood Reporter

"Paranormal" ultimately does deliver in a way that "Blair Witch" never did, but its achingly slow buildup is a test not just of an audience's patience but the power of hype surrounding the latest alternative scary movie.
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60

New York Daily News

By Joe Neumaier
A "Blair Witch"-y creepshow that owes a lot to Japanese horror.
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50

Boston Globe

Even at 85 minutes, the movie contains maybe 50 minutes that scare.
Full Review
68 out of 100
Generally favorable reviews
Metascore® based on all critic reviews. Scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.