I think I’ve made it clear here in the past that I’m not really a fan of horror as a genre. The “horror” I do tend to like is psychological in nature and not slasher in nature. The only horror franchise I have any interest in is Paranormal Activity and the first three installments scared me silly, plus they had a narrative, overarching plot that tied together neatly. That frayed badly in the fourth installment which was dull and muddy on how thing fit together with this tapestry of creepy they’ve been building. I was looking to PA: The Marked Ones, a spin-off from the main series (which returns at Halloween) to get us back on track.
We are not back on track.
The setting couldn’t be more different. After four films in exceedingly WASP-y neighborhoods, paranormal shenanigans come to the barrio. Unlike previous installments, though, they’re taunted into coming there based on a journal three friends steal from the home of a recently murdered neighbor who was rumored to be a witch (why does no one in these movies write this stuff down to see how bad an idea it looks like on paper)? So these geniuses, do a hoodoo ritual in A CHURCH and then, lo-and-behold, some fairly dark things start happening.
I thought the change in setting was a good idea, but I didn’t really like any of the characters so their eventual fate did not bother me. What really confused me was how this fits into the timeline of the other four movies as it seems to be happening before and during all of them. Then the last scene just confused me so badly that unless PA5 can sort all this stuff out for me and return to good, old-fashioned scares, I’m cashing out on this series. Glad I waited to rent this one.