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PARANORMAL ACTIVITY: THE MARKED  ONES-United States-100 Mins. (Unrated) 2014


Andrew Jacobs as Jesse in Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones.

Andrew Jacobs as Jesse in Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones

Jorge Diaz as Hector in Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones

Jorge Diaz as Hector in Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones

Gabrielle Walsh as Marisol in Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones

Gabrielle Walsh as Marisol in Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones

Directed and Written by Christopher Landon

Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones takes a left turn in that it features characters and situations not normally associated with the series. The story is the same-that of possession and witchcraft and the first-born-and characters from previous films make appearances here; however, aside from Molly Ephraim as Ali Rey, they’ve been relegated to cameo status for this one. I enjoyed the film and felt that, despite it not being an official sequel, gave the story a much needed shot in the arm.

The film focuses on Jesse, a newly graduated Hispanic teen living with his father and grandmother in an apartment complex in Oxnard. Popular belief is that his neighbor, Anna, is a witch. After she is murdered, Jesse and his friends find a book of spells and incantations in her apartment. They perform one of the spells and throughout the rest of the film Jesse exhibits strange and increasingly more disturbing behavior. He falls backward off of a chair and never hits the ground. He is attacked by thugs and hurls them off without touching them. Then there’s the Simon memory game that gives him ‘green for yes, red for no’ answers (A red light for “Are you good?” a green light for “Do you want something?”) Things go from bad to worse, we discover the connection between Jesse and Katie and Kristi and in a final ‘what were they smoking when they came up with this?’ moment we are taken back to the end of Paranormal Activity, albeit from an entirely different point of view. End film, roll credits.

Yes, Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones is a welcome shot in the arm for the series as I mentioned before. However, I can’t help but ask if there is a necessity for a fifth film in the series, as it has been announced that there will be? My answer meter leans toward ‘no’. Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones would have worked just as well outside of the Paranormal Activity universe and could have easily been its own film with minor changes to the narrative. Ultimately the film begs this paraphrase taken from the Mexican bandits in Blazing Saddles: “Movies? We don’ need no more stinking Paranormal Activity movies!”


The Marked Ones has the lowest box office opening weekend of the franchise.

Takes place four years after the events of Paranormal Activity (2007).

Katie Featherston is the only actress to appear in all five PA movies.

Features cameos from previous franchise actors Micah SloatMolly EphraimChloe CsengeryJessica Tyler Brown, and Hallie Foote.


Andrew Jacobs also appears in the TV series Major Crimes.

Jorge Diaz also appears in Filly Brown and Budz House.

Gabrielle Walsh also appears in the short film Kleptosomnia.


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From Paranormal Activity and featuring Katie Featherston as Katie:


I think we’ll be okay now.



Alexondra Lee as Holly (Image not from film)

Stephen Dunham as Doug (Image not from film)

Brady Allen as Robbie

Aiden Lovekamp as Wyatt

Directed by Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman

Story by Chad Feehan

Screenplay by Christopher Landon

Let me clear one thing up for everyone from the start; I did not hate Paranormal Activity 3 nor did I think it sucked in any way. But, I know that I am in the minority when it comes to the film so let’s move on. Apparently the filmmakers thought differently than I because they have set the 4th film in the series 5 years after the events of Paranormal Activity 2. The setting is now a house in Nevada in 2011 and strange things begin to occur after the family takes in a strange little boy from across the street after his mother is taken to the hospital via ambulance. When I say strange I mean this is the kind of kid who appears out of nowhere to scare the living shit out of you and who talks to unseen beings named Toby. I’m sure you remember Toby from the 3rd film so I don’t have to tell you what he is.

The film centers around the family’s teenage daughter Alex (Kathryn Newton, Bad Teacher) and her sort of somewhat boyfriend, Ben (Matt Shively, Barrio Tales) as Alex experiences strange phenomenon throughout the house and Ben helps her set up laptops that double as webcams to record the activity. Another neat trick involves night vision and the X-Box Kinect system. It made me wonder what the hell I was doing with a PlayStation 3.

But I digress. Paranormal Activity 4 is one of those movies that I don’t like to say a whole lot about because I don’t want to give too much away. I will say three main things about the film. One, the film does have some genuinely scary moments. Two, the film answers certain questions, but of course it sets up even more. Finally, the film marks the significant return of Katie Featherston to the series. That may not seem all that relevant to anyone else, but I’ve had the hots for her since the first Paranormal Activity. If that’s too much information then sue me.

So, is Paranormal Activity 4 good? I think so. Is it scary? For the most part, yes it is. Is it going to make a shitload of money? Seriously, what the hell do you think? Oh, and for those of you keeping tabs I rate the series in order of quality 1. Paranormal Activity 2; 2. Paranormal Activity; 3. Paranormal Activity 4 and 4. Paranormal Activity 3. Now shoo, go buy Halloween candy or sacrifice a virgin* or something.


*Written in Blood does not in any way, shape or form condone the sacrificing of virgins or even non-virgins for that matter. Do not attempt this. If you do I do not know you.



Katie Featherston as Katie

Micah Sloat as Micah

Written and Directed by Oren Peli

So, here’s the thing; I could swear that I’ve reviewed this movie before for this blog. I can remember finding the poster, the photos and the trailer. I remember posting it. So why is it that when I do a search for the post the only films that show up are “Paranormal Activity 2″ and “Paranormal 3 Activity”? I don’t delete my posts after I put them out there for all the world to see; so what the hell?

Anyway, I guess that’s not important. What’s important is this review. This marks the fifth time that I have watched “Paranormal Activity” and each time I’ve noticed something different. The first time I noticed the vocal just underneath Katie (Featherston’s) voice when she tells Micah (Sloat) that she thinks they’ll be okay. I noticed the chandelier moving the second or third time I watched and this time I noticed Katie’s hair move when she tells Micah that she can feel the entity breathing on her. It’s the small things that make this film as creepy as it is.

But allow me to expand on that a bit. It’s not the small things that you notice or expect to see that make “Paranormal Activity” creepy. It’s the things you expect to see that don’t happen. Every time I watch the movie I expect that when Micah and Katie first go downstairs to investigate the noise that the light from the camera will shine down on some perverse, terrible thing lurking in the darkness. When Micah opens the curtain to peer outside I expect to see a hideous visage staring into his eyes. I see neither; and that makes it even worse. I originally thought that Micah was a bit of a dick in the way he handled the entire situation; but I can also understand his reasoning. We fear what we can’t see and what we can’t understand. We are terrified when we want to protect our loved ones and don’t have the slightest idea as to what to do. “Paranormal Activity” is frightening because it makes us stare into the face of helplessness. Micah wants to protect Katie and in the end there’s not a damn thing he can do.

“Paranormal Activity” is similar to “The Blair Witch Project” in that it puts its characters in situations beyond their control. It’s no surprise that both films feature characters, Heather in “Blair Witch” and Micah in “Paranormal”, who are complete control freaks. It’s also no secret that it turns out bad for them. The thing is, sometimes you go up against something that’s in way more control than you are. The difference in the two films is that while “Blair Witch” stops at showing us that what we can’t see is more frightening than what we can see; “Paranormal” shows us that what’s even more frightening is what we expect to see and then don’t.

I still think I reviewed this movie already. I blame gremlins.


The original ending was changed at the suggestion of Steven Spielberg.

Oren Peli got the idea for the movie from a personal experience. Late at night he was sleeping and a box of detergent fell off the shelf. The box was pushed too far back for it to just tilt and fall.

The actors weren’t given scripts but were given guidelines on how to behave or what to discuss in their scenes.

Dreamworks wanted to remake the movie with a bigger budget and better known actors rather than release the film as it was and use the original as a DVD extra.




Katie Featherston is not the first woman that you think about when the subject of Scream Queens comes up in a conversation. But then you take a look at her page on the Internet Movie DataBase and you begin to change your mind a bit. Take a look at her credits; Paranormal Activity-horror, Paranormal Activity 2-horror, Paranormal Activity 3-horror, Psychic Experiment-horror, Mutation-you guessed it, horror. The Texas born beauty was born October 20, 1982 and graduated with a BFA from Southern Methodist University after majoring in acting in 2005. She says her favorite scary movie is Candyman and that Halloween is the perfect time of the year for horror movie marathons. She is vicious, malicious and oh so delicious. She is Katie Featherston and she is the Written in Blood Scream Queen of the Month for June, 2o12.


PARANORMAL 3 ACTIVITY-United States-83 Mins. 2011

Chloe Csengery and Jessica Tyler Brown as Katie and Kristi

Also starring Christopher Nicholas Smith, Lauren Bittner and Katie Featherston

Directed by Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman

Written by Christopher Landon and Oren Peli (characters)

Remember how I said that although people still get scared at horror movies, but they just don’t get scared as a collective whole? Yeah, well, you can throw that sh*t right out the window. That is, at least in the case of Paranormal Activity 3. The theatre was packed tonight when I went to see it and I could swear that there were several moments that people were going to end up in each other’s laps. Is the film good? I believe it is. I enjoyed the first two films and was a little weary that there would be a third. Without giving anything away I can safely tell you that Paranormal Activity 3 not only answers a lot of questions; it also opens up the door for a possible fourth film in the series. Whether that’s a good thing or a bad thing depends entirely on your point of view. The film once again uses the ‘found footage’ technique of telling the story and this time takes us back to when Katie was a child and when it all began and that is all I am going to say about it.

If you measure how good a horror film is by audience reaction then I would have to say that Paranormal Activity 3 is a masterpiece. It’s probably not; I’ll eventually buy the film and watch it alone, and the scenes that made everyone jump out of their skins will not seem that scary anymore. Then again, it could turn out to be like the first film and be even more frightening within the confines of home (not so) sweet home.


Towards the beginning of the film, Julie takes a picture of young Kristi standing in the driveway shortly before a group picture is taken. The photo being taken appears in bothParanormal Activity and Paranormal Activity 2 as an indication that the demon has started haunting them.

Mark Fredrichs previous played the Psychic in the first Paranormal Activity, which took place nearly two decades after the events in this film.

As with Paranormal Activity and Paranormal Activity 2, Paramount Studios once again utilized paranormal investigator/researcher, Christopher Chacon, who is recognized as one of the world’s foremost authorities on paranormal phenomena, to internationally promote and publicize this third installment. Chacon also works in the entertainment industry as a writer, director and producer.



PARANORMAL ACTIVITY 2-United States-91 Mins. 2010


Directed by Tod Williams

Story by Michael R. Perry

Screenplay by

Michael R. Perry

Christopher B. Landon

Tom Pabst

Original Story by

Oren Peli


Katie Featherston as Katie

Micah Sloat as Micah

Brian Boland as Daniel Rey

Sprague Grayden as Kristie Rey

Molly Ephraim as Ali Rey

Seth Ginsberg as Brad

The main thing wrong with Paranormal Activity 2 is that we’ve definitely seen it all before. In fact, we saw the same thing in the first Paranormal Activity. This time as the film progresses we learn that it’s a prequel to the events that happened in the first film. The Rey family is haunted by an unseen entity that appears to be there for one reason and that is for the couples newborn son. We know this because their daughter Ali did research on the internet on just that sorta thing. Isn’t the World Wide Web grand?

As is the case in any ghost story there is always a doubting Thomas. In this case make it a doubting Daniel, the husband. Everything weird thing has an explanation. The pot fell off the hook it was hanging from? It wasn’t hung properly. The pool cleaner is out of the pool every night for a week? The settings are too high. This kind of thing really upsets Kristie, his wife. She’s actually his second wife. We learn from a conversation he has with Ali that his first wife is deceased. They don’t go into detail; Ali just mentions that she thinks the house being haunted would be cool because then she could talk to her mom.

There are a few genuine jumps and jolts in the film. There is also a scene that is very reminiscent of the first film. The most annoying thing is how repetitive the film can be. The cameras that are installed throughout the house (and through which we the audience are the voyeurs in  the Rey household) go through the same pattern each and every night. It wouldn’t have killed the filmmakers to do a change-up every now and then.

Paranormal Activity 2 is not a bad film. It’s not a great film. It’s one of those films that when you watch it, you just know that you’ve seen done before, and better.



I decided to do something a little different for my blog this time. Instead of blogging about any one particular horror film I decided to give you my personal top 10. The movies in this list are the ones that I can watch over and over and each viewing is as fresh as the next.  So, here, in order from 10-1, is my list. If any of the films are on your list then please, write me and let me know.

10. Hellraiser-1987-directed by Clive Barker and starring Andrew Robinson, Clare Higgins, Ashley Laurence and Doug Bradley. Written by Peter Atkins. Based on the novella ‘The Hellbound Heart’ by Clive Barker.

From Barker’s feature directing debut graphically depicts the tale of a man and wife who move into an old house and discover a hideous creature – the man’s half-brother, who is also the woman’s former lover – hiding upstairs. Having lost his earthly body to a trio of S&M demons, the Cenobites, he is brought back into existence by a drop of blood on the floor. He soon forces his former mistress to bring him his necessary human sacrifices to complete his body… but the Cenobites won’t be happy about this.

I picked Hellraiser for number 10 mainly for the fact that although I own a copy on DVD I find myself riveted to the TV every time I’m channel surfing and it just happens to be on.  There are just so many things that make it worth recommending.  But what makes it truly special is that it introduced the world to Pinhead and the Cenobites. Demon to some, angel to others. Although for the life of me I can’t figure how anyone could see them as angels.

Best line-Pinhead to Kirsty: “No tears, please. It’s a waste of good suffering”

9. Paranormal Activity-2007-Written and directed by Oren Peli and starring Micah Sloat and Katie Featherston.

From a young, middle class couple moves into a suburban ‘starter’ tract house, they become increasingly disturbed by a presence that may or may not be somehow demonic but is certainly most active in the middle of the night. Especially when they sleep. Or try to.

When I saw Paranormal Activity in the theater I thought it was a very good horror film with a lot of scare potential. Then, I bought it on DVD and realized that location means everything. I took the film home and watched it in my bedroom with the lights off and the house quiet. Big difference than when I was watching in a neutral theater with about 70 other people. Never have I been as creeped out by something as simple as a bedroom door and the hallway outside of it. Oren Peli takes the haunted house tale out of the old gothic mansions and plops it right down in the middle of our living rooms; or bedrooms if you prefer.

Best line-Katie to Micah: “I think we’ll be okay now.”

8. The Fly-1986-Directed by David Cronenberg and starring Jeff Goldblum, Geena Davis and John Getz. Written by George Langelaan (original story), Charles Edward Pogue and David Cronenberg (screenplay)

From IMDB.Com-Seth Brundle, a brilliant but eccentric scientist attempts to woo investigative journalist Veronica Quaife by offering her a scoop on his latest research in the field of matter transportation, which against all the expectations of the scientific establishment have proved successful; up to a point. Brundle thinks he has ironed out the last problem when he successfully transports a living creature, but when he attempts to teleport himself a fly enters one of the transmission booths, and Brundle finds he is a changed man. This Science-Gone-Mad film is the source of the quotable quote “Be afraid. Be very afraid.”

The Fly remains Jeff Goldblum’s best film despite the fact that it is now almost a quarter century old. The funny thing about the film is that it’s about a human who becomes a monster. But while he’s turning into a monster he becomes more human than he’s ever been in his entire life. In my opinion the fact that Goldblum did not even receive an Oscar nomination is a crime of major proportions.

Best line-Seth: You have to leave now and never come back here. Have you ever heard of insect politics? Neither have I. Insects… don’t have politics. They’re very… brutal. No compassion, no compromise. We can’t trust the insect. I’d like to become the first… insect politician. Y’see, I’d like to, but… I’m afraid, uh…

Ronnie: I don’t know what you’re trying to say.

Seth: I’m saying… I’m saying I – I’m an insect who dreamt he was a man and loved it. But now the dream is over… and the insect is awake.

Ronnie: No. no, Seth…

Seth: I’m saying… I’ll hurt you if you stay.

7. Candyman-1992-Directed by Bernard Rose and starring Virginia Madsen, Tony Todd, Xander Berkeley and Kasi Lemmons. Screenplay by Bernard Rose. Based on the story ‘The Forbidden’ by Clive Barker.

From IMDB.Com-Helen Lyle is a student who decides to write a thesis about local legends and myths. She visits a part of the town, where she learns about the legend of the Candyman, a one-armed man who appears when you say his name five times, in front of a mirror. Of course, Helen doesn’t believe all this stuff, but the people of the area are really afraid. When she ignores their warnings and begins her investigation in the places that he is rumored to appear, a series of horrible murders begins. Could the legend be true?

Take away the hook and all the gory scenes where people are ripped from groin to gullet. Take away the mouth full of bees. Okay, now, what do you have left that’s scary? That’s right, kids-atmospehere. This movie gives you the feeling that something is going to happen even if it doesn’t. When Helen and Bernadette are looking through the hole in the wall of Helens’ apartment you get the feeling that someone is in that empty room. When they’re exploring Cabrini Green the same feeling returns, only this time they really were being watched as Helens’ camera will later testify to. Candyman is a very atmospheric ghost story disguised as a slasher film.

Best line-Candyman-“They will say that I have shed innocent blood. What’s blood for, if not for shedding?”

6. Inside aka À l’intérieur-2007-Directed by Alexandre Bustillo and Julien Maury and starring Beatrice Dalle and Alyson Paradis. Written by Alexandre Bustillo.

From months before Christmas, Sarah and Matthieu Scarangelo were in a car crash, of which Sarah and her unborn baby were the only survivors. On Christmas Eve, Sarah stays home alone, where she grieves her husband and prepares to go to the hospital the next morning for the delivery. As night falls, a woman knocks on Sarah’s door asking to use the phone. When she refuses, the woman reveals that she knows Sarah and tries to force her way in. Sarah calls the police; they inspect the home and determine the woman has left, but promise to keep watch over Sarah through the night. The woman returns and tries to take Sarah’s unborn child, but Sarah locks herself in the bathroom. The strange woman torments Sarah through the night and kills all who try helping her.

Inside doesn’t fall into the category of ‘it could happen’. Instead it falls into the category of ‘it did happen’. Does anyone remember Bobbie Jo Stinnett? She was a 23 year old girl who was murdered by Lisa Montgomery when Lisa decided that she wanted Bobbie Jo’s baby for herself. So she decided to kidnap the child. Only problem is that the baby wasn’t due to be born for another month. But that didn’t stop Lisa Montgomery. She just ripped the child right out of the womb, killing Bobbie Jo in the process. All that happened in Skidmore, Missouri. Inside is a French film about a woman who is terrorized in her home by a woman who wants her unborn child and will take it from her at any cost. My question is did something similar to the Stinnett incident happen in France; or did the news make it all the way overseas? Either way Inside is a near masterpiece of a horror film and also one of the most disturbing.

5. Jeepers Creepers-2001-written and Directed by Victor Salva and starring Justin Long, Gina Philips, Eileen Brennan and Jonathan Breck

From their way back home during the spring break, Darry and Patricia Jenner witness a mysterious person dumping something down a tunnel. Deciding to discover what was dumped down there, Darry discovers a huge disturbing hideout full of modified bodies. Darry and Patricia set off to get help, unaware that the individual is now aware of who has been down the tunnel. Darry and Patricia soon realizes that their pursuer is not just a mysterious person, but something even more horrifying, who has more in store than they could possibly imagine.

I despise ‘Hollywood’ happy endings.  No matter how dire the situation the characters find some way to get out of it and live yet another day. Save it for Disney.  Unless there is a plausible reason for it there is no room for them in horror films or any other genre of film for that matter. This brings me to Jeepers Creepers. This film completely and with great authority bitch slaps the ‘Hollywood’ happy ending right out of its Tinkerbell shoes. The main characters in this film, Darry and Trish, are on the run from a mysterious creature that wants ‘something’ from one of them. It knows no remorse and it cannot be bargained or reasoned with. The two of them may as well be standing still for all the good it does them to run. A word of warning: The director, Victor Salva, is a registered sex offender in both Florida and California. If this is something that offends you then do not watch the movie unless you can download it or get it on eBay. The last thing I want to do is encourage someone to put money in the pocket of someone like that.

Best line-Darry to Trish: “She did lose her head that night, Trish, and you wanna know what he did for her? He sewed it back on.”

4. Let The Right One In-2008-Directed by Tomas Alfredson and starring Kare Hedebrant and Lina Leandersson. Written by John Ajvide Lindqvist (novel and screenplay).

From, a bullied 12-year old, dreams of revenge. He falls in love with Eli, a peculiar girl. She can’t stand the sun or food and to come into a room she needs to be invited. Eli gives Oskar the strength to hit back but when he realizes that Eli needs to drink other people’s blood to live he’s faced with a choice. How much can love forgive? Set in the Stockholm suburb of Blackeberg in 1982.

I could go on and on about how great this film is, but I won’t. In fact, all I want to say about this film is that it is, to me, the most original and amazing vampire film to ever be made. It is a film about friendship first, vampires second. I urge everyone to see it. You will not be disappointed.

Best line-Eli to Oskar:I’m twelve. But I’ve been twelve a long time.

3.The Howling-1981-Directed by Joe Dante and starring Dee Wallace, Dennis Dugan, Patrick Macnee, Belinda Balaski and Elisabeth Brooks. Written by Gary Brandner (novel) and John Sayles and Terence Winkless(screenplay).

From special effects highlight an updated werewolf story. TV newswoman, Karen White, goes on a retreat after a traumatic incident with a serial killer. But is she really safe? And what should she fear more: regaining her memory or the creepy residents of “The Colony”? Followed by many unsatisfying and unconnected sequels. Helped launch shortlived werewolf craze in early eighties

The Howling is my favorite werewolf movie of all time. I’ve seen werewolf films that are great (Dog Soldiers, Ginger Snaps) , but it is this little gem of a horror movie that I have been coming back to for years and years. It will always be in my top three horror films of all time.

Best line-Erle Kenton to Dr Waggner-“You can’t tame what’s meant to be wild, doc. It just ain’t natural.”

2.Hostel-2005-Written and directed by Eli Roth and starring Jay Hernandez, Derek Richardson, Eythor Gudjonsson and Barbara Nedeljakova.

From backpackers are in Amsterdam where they get locked out of their youth hostel. They are invited into a man’s house where he tells them of a hostel somewhere in eastern Europe where the women are all incredibly hot and have a taste for American men. When they get there, everything is too good to be true – the hostel is “to die for”

You can say what you will about this movie and how it is responsible for the whole ‘torture porn’ movement of films. You can say that it’s ‘gore-nography’. I will say that it is one of the best horror films I have seen in a long time and that although it is criticized now, it will go down as a classic in the years to come. I have watched this film countless times and am never bored with it. It is that damn good.

Best line-Natalya to Paxton: “I get a lot of money for you, and that makes you my bitch.”

1.The Thing-1982-Directed by John Carpenter and starring Kurt Russell, Keith David, Wilford Brimley and David Clennon. Written by Bill Lancaster. Based on the novella ‘Who Goes There?’ by John W. Campbell, Jr.

From American scientific expedition to the frozen wastes of the Antarctic is interrupted by a group of seemingly mad Norwegians pursuing and shooting a dog. The helicopter pursuing the dog crashes leaving no explanation for the chase. During the night, the dog mutates and attacks other dogs in the cage and members of the team that investigate. The team soon realises that an alien life-form with the ability to take over other bodies is on the loose and they don’t know who may already have been taken over.

John Carpenter’s The Thing has been my favorite horror film ever since I first saw it in 1982. I personally believe that it is an almost perfect horror film. The film was ridiculed by critics and ran out of theaters when it first appeared but it is now considered a classic. The question I have is what the hell took people so long to realize something that I’ve known since 1982?  The thing is, back then people wanted their aliens to be cute and cuddly like E.T.; not ugly and menacing like the constantly shifting creature in The Thing. Personally I’ll take ugly and menacing any day of the year. The Thing is a masterpiece of a horror film and will be remembered long after E.T.

Best line-Garry (after passing the test to determine who is still human):  I know you gentlemen have been through a lot, but when you find the time, I’d rather not spend the rest of this winter TIED TO THIS FUCKING COUCH!

So there you have it. My top ten list of  horror films. I apologize for it being so long winded. Stay scared, everybody!

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