Film Bites: Are you ready to be scared?

By Chris Schulz

Don't look under the bed. Or behind the door. Or in the cupboard. Are you feeling scared yet? Because you should be terrified.

Yep, this weekend's biggest movie release is horror sequel Paranormal Activity 3, and if you scare easily then you might want to skip this one because, by all accounts, it's a bit of a pant-wetter.

You can criticise the Paranormal Activity series for many things - among them being low-budget Blair Witch Project derivatives, relying on the found-footage formula with little in the way of decent characters, plots production values.

But what they have done is bring a little 'boo' back into theatres, using simple techniques to reclaim some of the ground lost to over-the-top gore fests like the brutally violent Saw series.

Paranormal Activity 3 is a prequel to the first two films, focusing on young sisters Katie and Kristi as they encounter evil goings on and record events on their handycam.

And it's directed by the guys behind reality mind-bender Catfish, so there's probably a twist or two in there as well.

Reviews? You don't want to read reviews before you go to this one.

Critics will just say it's too similar to the first two and that you should go to Woody Allen's latest arthouse flick instead.

Ignore them, grab a bunch of like-minded friends who need a break from the rugby, buy buckets of popcorn, leave your expectations at the door and get ready to shriek in delight.

And pack some man-nappies, just in case.

Check out the trailer for Paranormal Activity 3:

If that's not your thing, Allen's arthouse film is called Midnight in Paris and has a star-studded cast including Owen Wilson, Rachel McAdams, Marion Cotillard, Michael Sheen, Kathy Bates and Carla Bruni.

The plot sounds pretty ho-hum but reviews have been fantastic with many saying this is Allen's return to form. It has an 81 per cent approval rating on review aggregate site Metacritic.

Check out the reviews here.

Check out the trailer for Midnight in Paris:

Lastly, The Trip stars reliably funny British comedians Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon in a reimagining of their hit TV series of the same name.

Basically, they tour around England as restaurant critics, feuding and fighting the entire time.

TimeOut reviewer Peter Calder gave The Trip three stars out of five, saying the pair's impersonations of Hollywood actors were particularly funny.

Read his review here.

Watch the trailer for The Trip:

- Herald online

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