Supernatural Activity….. a ‘found footage’ movie that WINS.
Being an independent filmmaker, a horror movie fanboy, and having worked for a low-budget horror distribution company, I have seen (or seen parts of) dozens of “found footage” movies.
Generally I am not a fan of that sort of style, given that much of my personal enjoyment of watching movies is the cinematography, and in a “found footage” movie I would hesitate to call the camera work (however immaculately shot & lit) to be ‘Cinematography’ as much as it is ‘Camera Operating’.
I don’t mean this as a sleight against the no-doubt talented cinematographers who work hard on (some) of these films, I’m just saying that the vast majority of films in this style (be it action, horror, sci-fi, whatever) are intentionally shot to look like a home movie and as a paying viewer that’s just not my thing.
To give credit where credit is due on the low-budget side there are a few honorable mentions like The Great American Snuff Film or Death of a Ghost Hunter (solid indie films you should also check out), while the vast majority of the low-budget found footage movies really SUCK and honestly are rather devoid of talent and originality. When you throw in larger budget films like Troll Hunter or Cloverfield then you start to win me back as an audience member, since the world they are taking their ‘found footage’ characters through is fabricated and pretty incredible.
At any rate, what I like about Supernatural Activity is that it faithfully parodies the ‘found footage’ movies, most notably Paranormal Activity, which had a brilliantly executed marketing campaign. Supernatural Activity also parodies the glut of paranormal or ghost hunter reality TV shows…. which is not expressly classified as ‘found footage’ though it is certainly shot in the same way, and has just as much of a contrived storyline as any feature film.
So for me sitting down to watch Supernatural Activity was a happy journey of jokes at the expense of both the found footage films and paranormal reality shows. Faithfully executed from the cast, the shooting style, the editing & presentation, and sheer silliness of the whole fad. Not to mention some heavy laughs brought on at the expense of Chris Angel.
If you love found footage movies and/or paranormal reality shows, or if you hate them, or if you love/hate them, or hate-love them, you’ll find plenty to enjoy in Supernatural Activity.