Thursday, August 27, 2009

The endings of Paranormal Activity

Rumours are filtering through that one of the scariest movies ever made will finally get a US release date almost three years after it finished production. The facts are still elusive but signs point to September 25 as the date for a limited release in the States. But as audiences begin to gear up for one of the most traumatic experiences to be had in the cinema, controversy will surely turn to which ENDING they will be getting.

The word is director Oren Peli has been tinkering with his cut of the film over the last year and may even have ditched the film's original ending for a an alternative ending. As this site reported, an alternate ending was screened with the film at various festivals over the last 12 months, including the Sydney Film Festival. Unfortunately, as I wrote in my review, the ending was the one time I felt the film went Hollywood and utilised more conventional shock tactics and even added an annoying, self-referential touch. So it made sense when I found out the ending was actually an alternate ending and there was an original ending said to be much longer and much more horrific.

Two months ago I thought I had found it. *SPOILER* A description from someone who had seen a screener of the film described a longer ending in which Kate kills Micah offscreen and then walks into the bedroom with a bloody knife. She then sits and rocks beside the bed for days (long enough that we hear the phone ringing and worried messages left in the background). Katie's female friend then comes to the house worried and Katie goes downstairs where you hear the friend scream. Katie comes back to the bedroom and continues rocking beside the bed as the counter records more days going past. Finally police arrive and as she approaches them with the knife they open fire on her and we fade out to the sound of police radios. It sounded much more unsettling than the ending I had seen and seemed to make better use of the dread that rendered the rest of the film so traumatic. The only thing that seemed off was the use of police - it seemed a little anti-climatic and risked providing too much closure.*SPOILER*

But I've recently learnt that ending was not the original at all. It was in fact one of THREE different endings. So which one was the original? From what I've heard I believe the description below to be that of the original ending, or at least the earliest one screened. Unlike the previous two, I regard this ending to be the perfect finish to one of the most original horror films I've ever seen. When I first heard the description, I gasped. I can't imagine how it's going to feel on screen.

I recommend you go into Paranormal Activity cold but if you've already seen the film and are curious about the original ending here is a description below:

This ending initially repeats what we see in the other two endings. We watch through the camera as the couple sleep. Then suddenly Kate sits straight up, gets out of bed, walks over to Micah and stands over him staring at him for a few hours. Then she walks out of the bedroom and we hear her going downstairs. After a few minutes tick off the clock, we hear Kate screaming. Micah wakes up, screams to Kate that he is coming to help her, and he darts out of the room. For the next few minutes you just see an empty bedroom with the ticking clock and you hear both Kate and Micah screaming and a lot of commotion like they are fighting. After a few minutes, the screaming stops and it is silent. After a minute or two of silence, you hear a loud stomping sound (like something very heavy is coming up the stairs).

From here, the ending diverges: Kate walks into the bedroom covered in blood and holding a large butcher knife down at her side. She walks into the room very heavy and stiff-like. She walks right up to the camera so that the upper half of her body is in the shot (but she isn't staring into the camera or looking at you, she's sort of looking downward), and then she simply pulls up the knife and slashes her throat in one quick, graceful movement, and falls down on the ground. The camera keeps rolling so we just see an empty bedroom for a few seconds and then the camera shuts off and the movie ends.

I love this ending. It's actually much more in line with how I hoped the film would finish. Not only is there no ironic self-referencing (Kate thankfully doesn't look at the camera) but it is a moment of sudden and horrific violence that would likely mark the most traumatic point of the movie.

If the dread of Paranormal Activity is the traumatic, sustained experience of pure desire (desire being an experience of lack, of absence), this ending is traumatic precisely because it realises that desire. Violence is withheld and withheld in this film, fueling our anticipation for it, an anticipation that becomes unbearable. We know something horrific is about to happen but the more the film shies away from it the worst our expectations become. This ending finally gives us all the violence we feared. More than that, it directly posits the violence as something we desire by offering it up in front of the camera.

What may have started off as a neutral viewing position through the camera has gradually become the eyes of the demon itself. It is less Kate who is possessed in this film than us. The demon is seeing through our eyes. What is shown to the camera is not just guided by the desire of the demon it is also guided by our own desire when we walked into this film - a desire for horror. This other worldly nature of our desire, this implication of our neutral gaze, is traumatic, and it's the original ending that so perfectly realises the nature of this gaze.

Why Dreamworks decided to change the ending is beyond me. Perhaps it was too gruesome for the rating they were trying to secure. Perhaps some timid audiences found it too confronting. Ultimately though it's an insane move. The fact is the film is not complete without its original ending. To give audiences one of the alternate endings would go against everything that is so unique about the film - its avoidance of the usual Hollywood scare tactics, its anticipation of a final moment of raw, unapologetic violence, indeed the very viewing position we have occupied for the last 90 minutes.

But there are signs of hope. At least according to the film's official website, which quotes my review, the filmmakers have read my criticism of the first alternate ending. Hopefully they'll be paying attention here as well. Let's not forget that at one stage we were actually going to get a Hollywood remake instead of the original. Perhaps these alternate endings will go the same route.

According to an interview with Peli, the original ending was the police ending. The suicide ending on the other hand was a rare alternate ending screened publicly only once. Peli goes on to say that there were many more alternative endings but they never got screened. However, we may see all of these endings on some kind of special edition DVD in the future.

Watch the original police ending here!



Blogger iain said...

A superb account, not just of the movie's original finale, but - importantly - why it's so effective (and essential). And one other thing - do you have any idea how wonderful it is to read your comments, articulate, eloquently expressed and GRAMATICALLY CORRECT?! I love you already.

11:56 PM  
Blogger David Marin-Guzman said...

I think the key point is that instead of the demon seeing through our eyes the demon is now looking at us through Kate's eyes. The desire that felt so traumatic for us, precisely because of its other wordliness, is now rendered distinct and distant. It's like the final scene exorcises the demon from us!

With Kate's look and Micah thrown against the camera, we are instead asked to occupy the standard Hollywood horror victim position - an essentially reactionary viewpoint rather than an implicated one. This might still be scary but it's far from the terror of possession, which was terrifying precisely because it frustrated any such reactionary position, and left us no way out but to implicate our own desire in the horror.

5:54 AM  
Blogger Sharad said...

That is a really nice analysis of the reason why the original ending might be more uniquely effective: The traditional-reactionary-innocence vs the active-implicit-guilty-thought process.

11:20 AM  
Blogger asbelljc said...

Just curious, could you post a spoiler of the whole movie? I can't find one anywhere!

10:07 PM  
Blogger z said...

Hi, The police ending is not entirely as you described it.

She walks downstairs, calls for Micah, he goes gets killed, then she comes back to the room (with blood and knife) stands on tops of the bed and days pass (the counter goes fast). The female friend comes to the house and the possessed Katie walks down again and kill her friend. Katie walks up to the bed again. Counter records more days passing. THEN police comes to the house and shot Katie.

2:40 PM  
Blogger z said...

Hi, The police ending is not entirely as you described it.

She walks downstairs, calls for Micah, he goes gets killed, then she comes back to the room (with blood and knife) stands on tops of the bed and days pass (the counter goes fast). The female friend comes to the house and the possessed Katie walks down again and kill her friend. Katie walks up to the bed again. Counter records more days passing. THEN police comes to the house and shot Katie.

2:40 PM  
Blogger David Marin-Guzman said...

Thanks for that z, I'll update it! How did you see that ending btw?

5:05 PM  
Blogger David Marin-Guzman said...

Z: Are you sure she stands on the bed? I was told she rocked sitting next to it - which would seem to be confirmed by the original trailer which shows a clip from that scene.

5:11 PM  
Blogger Mike Snoonian said...

I caught this last night in Boston and just posted my own review. I thought the ending worked, though it was a tonal shift from the rest of the movie.

That said, after reading the alternate takes, I would have preferred either of those, especially the latter. I got a little queasy reading it.

12:29 AM  
Blogger DJ Chaotic said...

The throat slitting ending reminds me a lot of the Michael Haneke film Cache. I'd be interested to know if the director was inspired by that film at all, because it's all about withholding the inevitable doom over our heads until the last moment where the giant act of violence is a character slashing his own throat.

3:07 AM  
Blogger chip said...

So glad to find out that there may be a better ending to this otherwise great film. My review, like yours, called the ending out as the failure of the movie.

1:51 PM  
Blogger David Marin-Guzman said...

DJ Chaotic: Great spot on Cache. I can't believe I never thought of it but you're absolutely right - it's incredibly similar.

Even just the way both films use the static watching camera and the way it feels like we ourselves are being watched when we look through it (like Cache's opening shot which we later realise is actually a tape being watched by the protagonists). Like Cache, PA's static camera sets us up as both the watcher and the watched. We neutrally survey the scene but it also feels like we are ourselves are being watched by the demon. Like Cache, PA implicates us in guilt, simultaneously through distance and lack of distance, through. On the one hand we can't do anything but react, but on the other hand, the camera doesn't take into account our reactions - we thus become unwillingly implicated in what we see on screen.

And yeah, the throat cutting scene in Cache was the most traumatic scene of the movie, I literally let out a 5 second gasp when I saw it - can you imagine how scary it would have been in Paranormal Activity?

Really great reference! Thanks DJ!

3:57 PM  
Blogger David Marin-Guzman said...

chip: your review made me realise how much I just automatically tuned out when the film started going all Hollywood - I wasn't even in the right frame of mind for the shot to work on me! It felt so completely alien to what had gone before.

4:00 PM  
Blogger AJ Johnson said...

so silly to say the ending with Micah getting thrown through the room into the camera was ALL hollywood. I thought it worked really well. As a matter of fact the act of him getting thrown with such force put an exclamation point on the fact that the demon had invaded it's host and there was no louder shriek by the audience than during that last scene. I think some were disappointed in the use of CGI on katie's face as it seemed a juxtaposition of the non use of it throughout. I think it's much scarier to have her walking around versus seeing her slit her own throat. Besides the filmmakers and studio aren't dumb...can anyone say Paranormal Activity 2?

10:33 AM  
Blogger mjconway said...

I totally agree with AJ Johnson! What are you guys smoking!!!! I saw the movie, last night. I didn't want to see a cliche slasher knife! Micah being thrown 25' from the stairwell to the back of the room was much more supernatural! And, it was a great reveal of bloody Kate!

You prefer a stupid throat slit? I'm sorry, I read that and it made me angry. Go watch FRIDAY THE 13TH, if you like that. I say this as someone who was very much into the movie and could not sleep, afterwards.

The worst part of movies like BLAIR WITCH is that they end with the "total speculation" of something happening off-screen. PARANORMAL ACTIVITY ultimately delivers! Subtle buildup is great, but I do not want a subtle ending!!! When Kate looks at the camera, it is the demon inside of her who is looking at that camera, messing with whoever might view the footage - it is a warning to us, the audience, who are not off the hook! I thought it was completely appropriate. I will be mad as hell if this changes in some way for DVD, though I wouldn't mind the inclusion of the previous alternates, in the special features. Kudos to how it currenty is! That final scene is what kept me from sleeping, last night! The rest of it was....subtle.

3:36 PM  
Blogger Darquestar said...

The throwing of Micah's body into the camera by the demon-possessed Kate was to acknowledge Micah's fixation on filming the evidence. It would be a way of saying, "Here. Let's make sure you get this one last shot, pal."

7:58 PM  
Blogger David Marin-Guzman said...

I suggest you guys go watch the suicide scene in Michael Haneke's Hidden. The film's use of the static camera is very similar Paranormal Activity and its suicide scene is what I imagine Kate slashing her throat would have felt like ie. utterly traumatic. Watch that scene and then tell me the original ending would not have been scary enough.

10:08 PM  
Blogger Ian said...

I've seen both endings -- her cutting her throat was very creepy, very horrifying. More in tone with the rest of the movie.

The CGI "demon" morph at the very end of the new ending was pretty lame, I think.

However...before that, when Kate throws the body across the room, that was hugely effective and very terrifying. The "exclamation point" analogy above is apt. This was the point where her possession was an undeniable reality and we as the audience are shocked and filled with revulsion and terror that Kate had truly become Something Else.

Very different endings and each effective in their own way though I think the film is stronger with the Micah being thrown at his own camera.

5:57 PM  
Blogger patient_dreamer said...

I think Micah being thrown towards the camera was climactic and scary as hell. However, the whole face morphing bit pissed me off. The original ending sounds absolutely perfect.

9:37 AM  
Blogger patient_dreamer said...

Oh AND- I think the ending should include micah being thrown and katie slitting her throat. The fact that Katie was strong enough to hurl a 150 lb man at the camera...awesome. I agree with Iain who said that it was demons way of giving Micah what he asked for, that perfect shot.

9:46 AM  
Blogger Fenmore said...

Thanks for posting this! I saw film last Thursday here in NYC. I loved everything about it except for the very last shot of Kate as the demon looking at the camera. That particular scene alone could have completely killed the movie for me - had it not been for the previous well crafted 98 minutes and 55 seconds.

9:43 PM  
Blogger Mike said...

I saw this in DC on Oct 8th....

I thought the ending was fine the way it was, as it caught people off guard, well, not me because part of it was dicated about 15 minutes earlier. It would have been stupid to go with the cutting of the throat thing as it wouldn't have helped how the overall movie went.

4:59 AM  
Blogger noelle said...

I just saw this movie and it SCARED THE HELL OUT OF ME!! I am literally afraid to go to sleep in my own bedroom! Absolutely the new generation "The Exorcist" mixed with a little "The Blair Witch Project." I LOVED this film. I read about the alternate endings but I really love the one with Micah being thrown into his own camera and sweet Katie looking so scary as the demon possessed her..The scariest parts for me were when she stood over the bed and stood over Micah's sleeping body for hours...CREEPY SCARY CREEPY....excellent film. An instant classic and in the top 5 of my all time fave classic horror films. Thank you for making this film I hope to see a PNA-2.

11:29 PM  
Blogger JasonSmo said...

I have to say that micah being thrown was perfect..They shouldve though was have Kate/demon sniff the body but look around, smiling etc and maybe walked back down stairs and thats it...or maybe even looked at the camera so we could have that eye contact with the demon but jumping at the camera was not needed. I was mostly confused at that, nevertheless i was still shaking with fear..And to the comments above about a sequel i think would be kinda of a bad idea. The filmakers would have to be very careful on not to ruin the concept..Im starting to get chills just by thinking of the movie..Im seeing it again tomorrow and im sure i will be just as scared as the first time around

10:50 AM  
Blogger Joaquin said...

I too prefer the theatrical ending because it doesn't give a sense of finality to the haunting. In other words, I mean that we, the audience, see that the demon is still out there and there's no telling what it's going to do next. With the other endings, by Kate slashing her throat or the cops killing her, it's basically like an open and shut case: demon be gone. I think it's creepier to be led to believe that a malevolent being is out and about and in the guise of a regular human being than to see Kate being dead and therefore assume the demon is also vanquished. Furthermore, Kate slashing her throat makes no sense because throughout the whole movie, the demon obviously has an interest in Kate and we learn it has been interested in her since she was 8 years old. So, why would it suddenly decide to kill her once it finally possessed her? Why go through all that effort to get into her body just to slash her throat? As for the cops ending? That's just so cheesy, I won't get started on that one.

1:59 AM  
Blogger Anders said...

While the other endings do sound cool (especially the throat slashing one) I have to say that I liked the so-called 'Hollywood' ending that's running in theaters now. It gives the audience that supernatural 'money shot' that we never got with Blair Witch. My only comlpaint with the movie is that they should NOT have shown the part with Micah getting thrown at the camera in the trailer. I don't know what kinds of idiots the studios are hiring to produce trailers these days, but what the hell is up with Hollywood showing the ending in the trailer?! They did it with Quarantine, now this. Someone on Paramount's marketing team need to be fired... immediately!

3:11 AM  
Blogger Febrifuge said...

I've read that the ending we got - the 'Hollywood' one - was Speilberg's idea specifically. And while the throat-slashy one sounds the most in tune with the rest of the film - so what if the demon's been messing with her since she was 8, the events of this movie are when it gets provoked into action, and anyway what's a couple of decades to a malevolent thing from the netherworld? - I can see why the ending we got works. As others have said, it's the "capper" after nothing but slowly rising action, the one big scare we perhaps really need before we return to our lives.

It releases us from the perspective of participants and makes us victims, sure, but one can argue that this is what we go to horror movies for. Keeping us in the place of the demon watching Kate kill herself is unsettling, but the light of day (or even the lobby) would defeat that pretty quicky. Not everybody would be satisfied by that ending. This way, we leave the theater with a nice adrenalin rush.

And I'll tell you what: the ending with "her whereabouts are currently UNKNOWN" is precisely as cheesy as "...and when they got home, hanging from the car's door was A HOOK!" But driving home, I was creeped out by the idea that I couldn't see into the back seat of my own car.

11:06 AM  
Blogger noelle said...

I agree with those who say it is much scarier to have demon-possessed Kate still alive and lurking about somewhere in the world, than to have her slash her own throat and die...Altho that ending would have been pretty scary and quite disturbing also. I like the idea that the demon is still out there, esp. if they make a PA 2. Of course they would have to be more careful with a sequel (maybe a prequel? go back to when Katie was a little girl perhaps?) b/c most sequels don't work (eg: Blair Witch, lol) I have 2 questions if someone can answer please..1st did demon possessed Kate break the camera at the end or did someone, like the police see the footage? and 2nd, what was the scariest part for everyone? Besides the ending the scariest part for me was when Kate gave that demonic smile laying in bed when she convinced Micah not to take her out of the house that fateful night...Love this film, can't wait to see it again..I'm sure I missed a few things b/c I could not concentrate! Still sleeping my bedroom light on too, with my pups to protect me :O LOL

8:17 AM  
Blogger Heidi in the making said...

Thank you for such a great post about the alternate endings! I actually think the ending where the police end up coming and killing Katie sounds like the worst choice of the three known endings. I liked everything about the ending I saw in the theatre with the exception of Katie looking at the camera at the end (luckily I saw it coming and looked away so it wouldn't ruin the movie for me forever) The reason I liked that particular ending was that it directed the demons main anger so forcefully at it's main target Micah for being so set on calling it out. It took all of the tension that was building up for an hour and half between boyfriend and demon and literally threw it in our faces. The demon established that it WAS in charge not Micah and was at the same time getting the revenge for him bringing in the video camera in the first place. I thought this was a fantastic movie, I saw it yesterday and made my dog sleep with me because I was terrified of having the lights out, lol.

8:55 AM  
Blogger Blogger X said...

What could they have included to make the movie even more scary? Micah sets the camera down in one room while him and kate go into another room...and "something" picks up the camera and films them arguing for a few seconds...right before the camera is set back down, we get a quick glimpse of what's holding the camera...

9:08 AM  
Blogger Zachary said...

Was everyone too scared to remember that Katie was not the demon's first possession? Remember Diane and when he finished her he went on to Kate after 20-25 years. If they had used to throat slitting ending it would not have finished the demon in any way. It actually opens up for a sequel quite well. (Not that I want to see one!) I think i might actually prefer the police ending, only for the days of sitting on the bed and killing the friend as well. What do you guys think?

9:59 AM  
Blogger red_wolf said...

i think the thought of having a paranormal activity 2 is a really bad idea. some say a prequel but i still dont think that would work because the thing thats so unique about the whole movie is that its made to seem like real footage to to make the sequel(or prequel) able to be as good as the original you would have to make it unique like this again. and i just find it really rare that two people possessed by the same demon would both come up with the idea to film their whole lives.

i agree that the ending in theaters was really good. but the entire time i was watching it i was wondering when she was gonna be rocking on the floor next to the bed lol. i like how this ending left you wondering what happened next and where she and the demon are now.

the police ending seems to be the most hollywood to me and the suicide one just ties everything up and i personally like to be kept wondering what happened at the end of a movie.

oh and BloggerX "we get a quick glimpse of what's holding the camera..." i think that would totally ruin it cuz you never know what it is the only thing you know of its appearence is the footprints so for me that would have frustrated me.

but im also curious to know what peoples favorite parts were, besides the ending of course. i loved this movie so much it was awesome

11:08 AM  
Blogger red_wolf said...

oh and just to add i really like the ouiji board part

11:12 AM  
Blogger Elizabeth said...

So my favorite parts were the scene where a) they showed you the notebook from where Micah was trying to figure out the Ouiji board message and you saw it say "Goodbye Diana" (the original girl possessed!); b) the scene where she's pulled off the bed by her foot and dragged screaming down the hallway, and finally, c) the footprint scene, because is it just me or those looked like birds' feet? Three toes? Either that or hands like it had crawled. Totally a reference to that demon book Micah bought and was looking at pictures of speculated Renaissance demons. I think a follow-up movie could be made of the relatives of the originally possessed girl finding out about Micah and Kate and going back to their house in San Diego. Prequel/sequel in one.

12:23 PM  
Blogger sh-r-the said...

If you remember the web page about the other girl that had been troubled since she was 8 and eventually we (and Micah and Kate) see pictures of her dead. To me it's like she ended her own life in a moment of "clarity" when she realized that she had been possessed.

Assuming its the same demon this time and with Kate the demon has her. She did not manage to get away (read not dead) and she is well and truly possessed and on the loose - "no trace of Kate".

And the jumping at the camera (at us) - demon and all - is like a warning that we're next, as a lot of folks pointed out above .

I think this ending is a scarier and an apt way to end the movie. Kate slashing her throat would have been anti-climatic in this movie.

Another thing is the whole idea of the camera watching the door, the ouija board, and the footprints go a long way in heightening the suspense and tempt us to want to "see" the demon. And eventually the director gets us by letting Kate/demon go at us. This also leaves the door open for PA2, with the demon all ready to go.

12:50 PM  
Blogger daniellediamond said...

I REALLY like the idea of the throat slashing in front of the camera instead of her demon face. BUT, Micha being thrown at the camera was perfect for many reasons some commentors stated. It made me jump, which I so want out of a movie like this. I'd say keep in her throwing him at the camera, but end with the throat slash.

12:55 PM  
Blogger noelle said...

....The more I read these comments the more I appreciate the ending I saw in the theater. and the thing about a sequel/prequel is it doesn't have to be like the original. There doesn't have to be a video camera capturing the paranormal activity, does there? That was just the "gimmick" they used for THIS film which worked quite well other question...what did Katie and Micah think they were gonna do with all that footage in the end anyway? Sell it to A+E or something? To be 100% honest, before seeing this film, I would've thought to do the same thing--try to catch the "activity" on videotape. Of course, I don't even want to look up "demon" or "demonology" on the internet anymore--wouldn't want to accidentally "invite" any demons in to my home :O! Of course Kate was plagued by this demon for a very long time...I want to know why! Why her? Who burned her house down and why? Why did the demon pick women as hosts? So many questions, lol.......

3:46 PM  
Blogger nick said...

bunch of morons getting scared at stuff that is not real
when life has enough real crap in it to make yoru hair grey, with people burying children alive after moelsting them or blowing them up wit hcar bombs.


oooh a pycho bitch! thats is so new! oooh suicide - so unique

3:48 PM  
Blogger noelle said...

Hi Nick! Guess what? this is a forum to discuss the film Paranormal Activity..I think you're looking for the "carbombs and child killer" forums,:( but thanks for posting! hey btw, is it safe to say the movie scared you too? LOL

8:19 PM  
Blogger Mike Snoonian said...

Nick, you sound like you're a blast at parties.

elizabeth-that was a fantastic catch about Goodbye Diana and the girl from the website.

I still think the throat cutting scene would have worked best. The idea being that the possessions are totally random and at the whim of the possessing demon. When he grows bored with his subject, he simply disposes of it and moves on another one. It being an eternal creature, sixteen years of on again/off again toying with its subject would seem like an eye blink to any of us.

8:39 PM  
Blogger jenn said...

The throat slitting ending would have been superb. And for the love of Tyr, NO SEQUELS! Leave well enough alone and don't ruin something decent and lovely.

2:19 PM  
Blogger nick said...

i am not scared by BOO movies

or fake throat cutting

ther are enough in real life

read the news some time


2:53 PM  
Blogger red_wolf said...

hahaha wow nick i love how youre saying that we don't have lives because were commenting on a movie that we really like when in actuality you are the one who is posting comments making fun of a movie that you hate and the people who watch it.

3:02 PM  
Blogger red_wolf said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

3:02 PM  
Blogger Lina.G said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

6:19 PM  
Blogger Tito said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

7:50 PM  
Blogger Tito said...

At first I was disappointed by the ending, especially since it's all over the TV spot. However, after thinking about it, the theatrical ending works well... but instead of the CGI demon-face I think it would have been creepier if Kate just laughed or smiled menacingly at Micah's body, followed by the camera shutting off. Just a thought. Great movie though!

7:52 PM  
Blogger J. said...

I had an idea for the ending which is already freaking me the hell out .. but what if Katie (after killing Micah) and fixating on the camera, just walked up to the camera and stared into it, the same way she had stood over Micah's sleeping body and stared at him for HOURS as he slept. The time lapse would then show that she's been staring at us, the audience, for perhaps 3 hours or so. This would ultimately show that, yes, we the audience are now of the demon's interest.

8:25 PM  
Blogger chip said...

J: that's my favorite "rewrite" anyone's given. Creepy and in keeping with the rest of the film!

8:33 PM  
Blogger David Marin-Guzman said...

J: I think the key to the horror of the film is that Katie doesn't look at us/the camera. What's scary about the rest of the film is that the demon is like the blind spot in our vision - he is invisible, we don't where he'll come from next. That's why it feels like the demon is looking through our eyes, because the ultimate blind spot is our own condition of sight. It's like the horror is in us but we can't see it. Our implication in the horror is invisible - that's what makes it so scary.

When Kate morphs into the demon and looks at the camera it exorcises the demon from us by making it visible. It may still be scary (in a more conventional way) but at least we can see the demon and know that it is distinct from us.

That's why I think Micah being thrown against the camera (despite the potent shock value) is the wrong kind of horror. It's not about the horror being in us but outside of us. This kind of ending ultimately lets us off the hook.

8:37 PM  
Blogger David Marin-Guzman said...

In other words, I reckon J's ending would still be really freaky but that Katie can't look at the camera in it. Her face should be partly cut off (like the suicide ending), as if she's looking at something behind us.

10:46 PM  
Blogger mjconway said...

While I don't like the way the face morph was done, I think acknowledging the camera, which the demon obviously threw Micah's body at, was great. This whole time, we - the audience, have been watching as safe voyeurs, but now the demon turns its attention to
the camera to taunt whoever is watching the footage. That to me, is not breaking the fourth wall, since the camera has an acknowledged presence. Breaking the fourth wall is when actors break character to wink at the camera.....when there is not supposed to be a camera.

However, I might have had Kate walk into the room and attack Micah's body. She pushes him closer to the camera, out of view. When her eyes raise up into frame, I would have blood all over her face. She attacks the camera, revealing her bloody mouth, and knocks it out of commission, so you would see glimpses of her screaming, bloody face and flashes of screen snow, until it the image completely goes to black. (But that's me. Heh)

One possible argument against the throat slit ending, is that it wouldn't be in keeping with case studies of possession, like those in Hostage To The Devil, written by Malachi Martin. I know that sounds nitpicky, but the director did do a lot of research on the subject and being realistic seems to have paid off.

Someone made a really good argument about the demon wanting Kate for itself and was not interested in killing her. It kept the burnt picture of her. That is also why it smashed the photo of the two of them, but only left claw marks in Micah's face.

12:27 AM  
Blogger Morgan said...

I would have loved one of the alternate endings. I just saw the film this evening and I'm still freaked out! I can't bring myself to close my eyes =(

1:00 AM  
Blogger Sir said...

The "slashes-her-own-throat" ending doesn't work very well because it is commonly known and accepted demonological lore that a suicide of the possessed person would defeat the entity's primary objectives which are to, A.) Have a host-vessel to occupy, and B.) Torment said host-vessel in the process. Yes, ultimately, it is to the satisfaction of the demon that the host-vessel is eventually killed- but, that event is usually reserved for a scenario involving death at the hands of another person or people.

A suicide would simply send the demon back to the drawing board more prematurely than it would have otherwise preferred. I'm glad that they didn't use that ending (-but, of course it's gonna undoubtedly be included in the Director's-cut DVD/Bluray bonus disc release lol).

2:25 AM  
Blogger tate said...

I don't think Katie would kill herself because by the end of the film she's under the demon's control, and his desire is to possess her, not kill her. Further, suicide would be a sort of victory for Katie over the demon in that it could never haunt her again. I prefer the darker ending where the demon wins (gets Katie). As for the current ending, I read her looking into the camera and attacking it not as a meaningless self-referential moment, but as a lashing out at the device that she & the demon have hated for the entire film. It makes sense to couple it with Micah's murder. For these reasons the current ending works best for me.

9:52 AM  
Blogger Staying Alive said...

according to an interview with the director, the new ending was Spielberg's idea. Way to take someone's artistic masterpiece, demand one change, and that one change becomes the main criticism of the film, with everyone wishing ANY of the director's original ideas had made the cut. Good job Spielberg. They'd be dissecting the ending at film schools if it weren't for you and your

9:54 PM  
Blogger noelle said...

I liked the Speilberg ending! I thought that was the scariest part of the whole movie! When the audience finally came face to face with Katie's demon..I don't see the other two endings working quite as well, but yes, I would like to see them added to the dvd, lol..I still think my idea of a sequel or prequel could would not have to include videotaping as the main premise though...there are so many different scenarios..I want to know more about Katie. I am left with feeling I didn't really know much about her, or why the demon chose her, and where she is now..who will be her next victim. Maybe in the next movie she begins to realize or remember or piece together what she did and THEN kills herself...anyhoo. the film is finally coming to my local theater so I will be seeing it again tomorrow :D

10:54 AM  
Blogger noelle said...

btw...what "J" said about his alternate ending where demon-possessed katie just stared into the camera for hours (like she stood over Micah's body for hours) would also have been a pretty good ending. That is pretty clever and CREEPY CREEPY CREEPY... I love it!
I would never look at my video camera the same way EVER. lol

10:59 AM  
Blogger J. said...


In watching the movie, I never felt as if the demon was looking through our eyes. I felt I was purely the spectator, just as much as Katie or Micah were the spectators (once they were able to view taped footage), trying to get that "glimpse" of the demon .
The camera itself (along with the ouija) also became a means to connect the demon to the
victims. It was practically a key given to the demon to enter their home. That is how I view the camera, as a gateway.

Like some of the posters here, I actually did enjoy the ending I saw in the theaters (where Micah is
thrown at the camera) (and by the way, was the camera on a tripod? Because that would be a pretty sturdy tripod). It was a sort of "F-You" to Micah from the demon. Micah challenged it to show itself, and took it even a step further in wanting to catch it on film. What I didn't like was when Katie lunged at the camera at the end just because that was all too familiar in horror movies these days.

I feel that if she stared into the camera for hours (and it would still be very spooky if it was only, perhaps, a shot of
half her face), she/the demon is just further acknowledging that opened gateway. And of course the other spectators besides Micah and Kate, at that point, is anyone else watching that footage (us, the audience! or people who have found that camera). It would be a message to anyone watching the footage that, "hey, I know you're out there, just you wait." She stared down Micah for hours and to have her staring us down for hours, would just FREAK me out.

Thanks Chip and Noelle (I'm a SHE, btw, not a HE) for liking my idea for an ending.

I think I'd like to watch some happy fluff now. I Love Lucy episodes are on ..

8:53 PM  
Blogger noelle said...

I just saw this film again...I got scared again b/c no one wanted to go with me so I decided to go by myself. I have never sat thru a film alone but I didn't mind this time b/c I really like being scared! I caught a few things this 2nd how Micah is playing with that big-a** kitchen knife in the very beginning--the same knife he gets killed with (I think we are led to believe). And another thing, when the demon dragged her out of bed and bit her, THAT would've been the last straw for me!! I would've been out of that house THAT NIGHT. I mean, there were other things that scared me and would've made me leave earlier, like the noises and watching the door move that very first time! But since this had been happening to her since she was only 8 yrs old I guess she got used to it. Why did the demon pick now to possess her? Did it burn her house down (no one was hurt tho) when she was little? I can't wait to own the dvd..I have second thoughts about the face morphing now too...maybe she shoulda just smiled demonically into the camera, but that supernatural demon-look scared the pants off of everyone! LOL

3:06 PM  
Blogger said...

I just left the movie and was stupified by the ending. I knew going in that the ending had been changed. However, it would have thought (how dumb could I be) that they would have chosen a better ending, not a worse one. Any ending would have been better than that ridiculous face in the camera, ala The Ring. It took a decent indy film and Hollywood threw up on it.

7:39 PM  
Blogger ranwulf said...

Well - I have to go with the "stares into the camera" ending. The whole idea of a person standing and staring, like Katie did to Micah earlier, wigs me out to no end. Very high creepiness factor there. Or - she looks into the cam and smiles that weird "lookit me - I'm possessed" smile from when she convinces her idiot boyfriend that she doesn't wanna leave - THAT little smile sent chills down my spine. But still and all an excellent, thoughtful film that succeeded in scaring the pants off of me.

8:08 PM  
Blogger settlestone said...

see, what I saw at the ending was the demon as people were saying earlier giving micah's aspirations to solve his own issues the old kybosh. you can't personalize the ending, if you do you're robbing yourself of it's effectiveness. The demon could care less who was watching the video, I don't even think that had anything to do with it. One of the main plot points was Micah's refusal to go to anyone else for help. The end scene was a final crescendo to that idea. It had nothing to do with the demon making plans for further ravaging in the audience. I thought at least..

But ya, I just saw it tonight and really, really enjoyed it alot. I was sitting in my seat quietly murmuring "oh my god" every few seconds during the really freaky stuff.

Also, I really liked the photograph from her formerly burned house and how that played in, that was great.

12:39 AM  
Blogger Lunessence said...

According to the script, it doesn't make sense that Katie just disappeared and was never found. Looking back on the information that Micah was discovering about the girl from the 60's that he thought was haunted by the same demon, Katie asked how that girl had died. There was a gruesome picture of her that I couldn't quite see how she had died, but it did look like there was blood around her ear. Possibly a slit throat.

It makes complete sense that Katie would die the same way, if indeed she is truly haunted by the same demon, as suggested by the script. And a slitting of her own throat would have brought that plot line full circle. Instead, by choosing a different ending, they have completely left a hole within that plotline. The only way to fix it with the current ending, would be to go back and re-film the internet scene, saying that that other girl had disappeared and was never found.

The ending would have been absolutely fantastic had they combined their two original ideas with the throwing of Micah's body. After supernaturally throwing him at the camera (and his weight would add to the reasons why her footsteps were so heaving coming back up the stairs) she could have stayed there for days, her feet, legs or torso in view with the time lapse. Or, if possible, have the camera fall in a way that we can still see her entire body along with a part of Micah's as she stands there for days. Her friend comes over, and Katie goes downstairs to kill her, but leaves her there. Then Katie comes back up the stairs, walks over to Micah's body, stares at it with knife in hand, bends over to set the camera upright or just haunches over his body and then slits her throat in a similar manner of how it happened originally.

This or something similar would have made me absolutely adore this movie, but as it stands, the current ending left me with an incomplete feeling - not the fact that she disappeared, but the fact that I felt used at the end. All that suspense for a demon face lunge at the camera?

I immensely enjoyed the terrifying suspense and was so thrilled that it was the movie goers that had to create their own horror by what wasn't able to be seen. The current ending just seemed out of place in accordance with the rest of the film.

5:58 PM  
Blogger Lunessence said...

I just really wish I hadn't seen the official trailer before watching the movie!

I was naive to think that all of the best parts wouldn't be shown in it. So, the 'under the sheet' scene and Micah's thrown body were, unfortunately, not an exciting surprise as the movie was winding down. I knew those events had to happen eventually.

I really wish Hollywood wouldn't do this in trailers.

6:17 PM  
Blogger Aura said...

I like the movie and it left me totally freaked out especially when it was time to sleep... alone. But reading about all the different endings, i would have preferred a combination of the three. (possible combo below)

... going up the stairs heavy footed, then have her throw bf towards the camera, after sits on the bed rocking for hours just staring at the bf on the floor, (would be nice to if there was a little head twitch here and there) hear the phone ringing on the background with frantic call from friend and original doctor… then friend, original doctor, and police arrives at the house… they run to the bedroom just outside the door and sees the bf on the floor, she’s nowhere in sight… the friend runs inside the room to the bf, she appears behind the doctor and police with a knife… door slams, everyone screaming, friend trying to open the door, something slams at the door, silence… then door opens, she’s at the door (background you see everyone bloody and have torn limbs), rushes her friend and kills her of camera (for dramatic purposes) camera drops on the floor, sees her bloody feet walking towards the bed… (off camera) slits her throat and falls on the floor, face lands just in front of the camera, shows her smiling.

12:06 PM  
Blogger Marcus said...

It would be crazy if after she cut her throat.. the demon (or alien or whatever is was) left her body.. so she becomes conscious of her predicament just before her death.

1:08 PM  
Blogger micah said...

Here's the ending I wanted:

If you'll remember, early in the movie, Micah alluded to slicing the throat of the demon, well, the ending I'd like would have been Micah running downstairs to "save" Katie. You hear all the commotion, then the loud noise coming up the stairs. Katie walks into the bedroom with the butcher knife in one hand and Micah's head in the other. She lays Micah's head on the pillow on his side of the bed and just stands there and stares at it for days. As the battery is getting ready to die on the camera, you see the police coming up the shuts off!

8:03 PM  
Blogger nicole12909 said...

I was just thinking, i think the demons entire intent throughout the movie was to posses Katie, he just wasn't strong enough. The negative energy created by Katie and Micah as the film progresses strengthens the denom. For example, I think in the scene when we see her the sheets move (by the demon) and then it seems like Katie's foot is being tickled, the demon was attempting to drag her at this point but wasn't strong enough. So this being said, the ending with him being thrown at the camera is not only an F-you to Micah, but also a look at how strong I've become and it's all your fault. That, to me, is even scarier because Katie's whereabouts are unknown at the end. So now you have an extremely angry, extremely strong denom on the loose that looks like a sweet girl.

9:06 AM  
Blogger Chad Gibson said...

I really liked this movie but I have to agree that having Kate lunge at the camera with the face morph was a little too much, and a little too cliche.

I thought that the scene with Kate getting dragged out of the room was pretty darn effective and would've played on that for the ending. Ex; Have the whole sequence of Kate going downstairs, screaming, Micah getting chucked at the camera ect. But instead of possessed Kate standing there I would've had normal Kate come running screaming to Micah's body and maybe right as she reaches his body, or right before, her foot gets caught and she gets dragged out the room screaming and this time no more Micah to come rescue her, door slams shut, camera cuts off.

I don't know, just an idea. I think it's definitely hard to come up with endings to movies like this, because people's minds anticipate and expect so much. But I definitely liked the movie and respect how well they pulled it off with such a low budget.

6:41 PM  
Blogger Mr.Murder said...

Katie's female friend then comes to the house worried and Katie goes downstairs where you hear the friend scream. Katie comes back to the bedroom and continues rocking beside the bed...

In the version I just saw...

Katie does NOT go downstairs, she stops rocking back and forth when you hear her friend scream. She only starts rocking again when you hear her friend leave... to call the police one would imagine.

As for the police shooting Katie being a "definitive end to the demon"... not true.
Before the police ascend the stairs the light in the far bedroom switches on, stays on for around 30 seconds, then switches off.

After the police have shoot Katie they move back to the far bedroom only stating "I don't know where it came from..." "Check that room right there". At which point you notice that the far bedroom door is closed.

3:21 PM  
Blogger mjconway said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

4:02 PM  
Blogger mjconway said...

Okay, okay. I've come to the conclusion that there are too many great ideas being discussed. Based on the cumulative posts, I have the new ending for DVD!

Kate throws Micah at the camera, sits at the bedside and rocks. Fast-forward.
Girlfriend comes over, so Kate goes downstairs. Girlfriend screams. Footsteps are heard, then Kate throws the girlfriend at the camera, landing on Micah's body. Kate sits at the bedside and rocks back and forth. Fast-forward.
Cops come into the house. Kate goes downstairs - lots of screaming and shooting! Footsteps are heard. Kate throws 3 dead cops at the camera! Fade to black.
Fade in. Kate is looking into the camera. She turns it around and we can see 20 bodies piled up - cops, firemen, a stiff German Shepherd dog, the Demonologist, etc. Kate puts the camera back to the original position. She takes a large knife and cuts her throat. Her head.....falls off! Nobody is in frame, but we hear footsteps. A moment later her neck-hole body walk to the doorway, with her head in her hand. She turns around to face the camera and throws her head at the camera.

The camera falls down on the floor next to Kate's head! Kate smiles at the camera. As her face begins to contort and stretch, Kate's foot steps on her head. Red glop obscures our view and the image becomes video snow. The End

4:14 PM  
Blogger pink_caddillac said...

I thought the ending with Micah being thrown into the camera was a perfect ending to the scariest movie. No, the morphed Katie/Demon face wasn't terrifying but I think they put it in so that people put a face to the terror. I don't see why Katie would slash her own throat when the demon waited so long and took the perfect opportunity to posses Katie and then kill her, it makes more sense to the story for the demon to keep her body and then take off not to be found. And as several others said this could give us a possible Paranormal Activity 2. It would be nice to have all endings on DVD but ending I just wrote about seems to fit the story leaving it open to thought and what has become of Katie now.

7:18 PM  
Blogger pink_caddillac said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

7:33 PM  
Blogger pink_caddillac said...

And I wanted to add that it seems like something the demon would do is throw him into the camera and then look into the camera and smile because if you play games with it you are inviting it in, so Micah played games with it and it seems like in the end he was saying see I can play games too.

7:34 PM  
Blogger Melvin said...

there was a slight variance in the ending that i watched, i found a distribution copy online today. the ending was the police one. the same things happen as posted here the only variance is when katie comes back up the stairs, she sits down next to the bed and rocks her self, time speeds up with her still rocking. it slows down long enough to hear the concerned phone call from her friend.

time speeds back up, some one persumably her friend comes over. katie stays in her room rocking back and forth. the friend screams and it sounds like she runs out of the house on her own. hours later the police show up. the light in one of the far bedrooms comes on and goes off again. when the police finally find katie she snaps out of her trance and starts yelling wheres mika wheres mika while trying to run out the door. at that point she is shot.

this movie seems to have so many alternate endings or at least many variants on multiple themes that they could probably fill a dvd with them alone.

7:54 PM  
Blogger chip said...

Write Club Screenplay Challenge has just announced a screenplay contest: Write a new 2 page ending for Paranormal Activity. It's for screenwriters, not just movie fans, since it's judged as much on proper format and other writing considerations as it is on the ending.

8:46 PM  
Blogger David Marin-Guzman said...

Many thanks for the added details on the police ending Melvin and Murder. It completely changes my view that the police ending resolved too much. Will update the description with these details

1:55 AM  
Blogger MKIII said...

I personally think the perfect ending would be, starting from when she throws micah at the camera:
She goes to the bed and stands there for a few days, a few head twitches, and a few voicemails from her friend and the demonologist. Her friend comes over, you hear the doorbell and knocking, and katie walks downstairs and you hear screaming and katie walks back upstairs, knife in hand.
A few hours later you hear banging on the door, the light down the hall turns on for a few seconds then off. The police come in the downstairs and you hear "What the F***?!", 2 cops come up the stairs guns drawn, Katie turns around and freaks out. Cops say "Drop the Knife!" then shoot her. the end.

3:45 PM  
Blogger michelle said...

I just watched the film and the ending I saw she doesn't go and kill the friend at all, she just sits there rocking still, then the police come, she gets up saying "micah?" and as they tell her to drop her weapon twice, shoot and kill her.

8:56 PM  
Blogger Toby71 said...

I too liked this movie alot. I also would have liked to see it end different. After his body is thrown and we see her standing there, she falls to the ground. An hour goes by and she comes to slowly and sees the body. She screams and crawls over to him. While she is crying we hear the footsteps and see the shadow again. She screams and is dragged down the stairs this time. Soon, the screams stop and you hear a door open and shut. I could live with that.

11:00 PM  
Blogger The said...

Saw the screener w/ the long drawn out ending, then the theatrical ending. Very disappointed that I didn't see this one in the the theater. :( Ruined what could have been the first truly awesome Blair Witch horror flick in years for me. :(

3:34 AM  
Blogger your personal robot by metroccolis said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

12:19 PM  
Blogger your personal robot by metroccolis said...

I guess, I just saw the original ending, which was PERFECT! Because, she comes back after killing Micah downstairs, sits next to the bed and starts waving her body, days pass.... then her friend is coming, obviously encounters the dead Micah, screams... In this moment the waving stops - the demons leaves her body to kill the friend, you hear trouble, screaming, silence - then the body starts waving again... for days until the police is coming. Such a great idea! This film doesn't need any cheap CGI - this way, it's timeless! Such a simple movie - but soooo effective! Classic!

12:21 PM  
Blogger The said...

I don't think the demon left to kill the friend. I think her girlfriend saw the body, freaked out, ran outside, slammed the door, and called the police.

When the police arrived and went upstairs, she just kind of "woke up" and came to. They shot her and the movie just sort of ended...weakly.

The screener ending completely destroyed any buildup from the movie. The theatrical ended w/ a massive bang and shock, complete w/ the scary face and the unnerving feeling that she's still out there!

2:17 PM  
Blogger reddog said...

Reddog said...

Retarded Movie... retardrd actors...retarded ending and a waste of time...What a pile of S**t!

3:17 PM  
Blogger bree_Zee said...

what a bunch of hooey. it was the least scary movie i've seen ever. i've read books that have scared me more.

5:20 PM  
Blogger Reese said...

Z's assessment of the ending is incorrect. I just watched the screener with the rocking and police. Katie never goes down to kill her friend. Her friend leaves after seeing Micah's body and calls the police--that's why they showed up in the first place! Why else would they show up with guns aimed unless they had reason to be worried?
I have yet to see the throat slit ending but I have seen the other two, and although it would succeed in being scary, it ultimately makes zero sense in terms of the movie. Why would the demon want Katie to hurt herself after obsessing after her since she was 8 years old? Besides, in the screener the girl Micah researches back from the 70's only began to go absolutely off the rocker once the exorcist got there, chewing off her arm until she died of blood loss. In this line of logic, Katie would never hurt herself except for if there was no chance the demon and her could be together.
I think the 3 endings point out three distinct psychological points. The first is pure, utter evil (the throat slitting). Interesting, but ultimately it paints the demon as senseless, when we know its much more intentional than that. The second (the police version) is tragic. Katie calls out Micah as the policeman's flashlight meets her eyes (after over a day of rocking) as if she didn't know what happened at all. Thus she is a victim when she is shot amidst the confusion. The third is more hollywood-esque with their fear-overflow. It is geared to make the viewer go home afraid to sleep (thus why Katie was never found).
Hope this provides some insight.

5:35 PM  
Blogger Stick Figure of Death said...

You did a damn good job on here, I must say.. I agree that ending was sligthly flat. Effective, but sorta cheesy. If they would have mixed Micah being thrown to the camera, ending with Katie slashing her throat, I think would have been VERY effective, in my opinion. If we can get a post of the throat slashing end, and also anyone know if thre's an actual URL or reference to the "website" Micah was looking at?

7:58 PM  
Blogger Stick Figure of Death said...

To reply a few comments above.. as the police first arrive, notice the light come on in the other bedroom, turn off, then the door shuts.. I'm guessing that the plot was the demon left before the police shot Katie, to move on to a new host?

8:09 PM  
Blogger Crichton said...

The police ending isn't as someone stated much earlier. Most of it is correct though. After Micah runs down stairs to help Kate, Micah screams in a misunderstanding kind of way (I assume because his girlfriend came at him with a knife). Everything went silent, then you hear foot steps coming back up the stairs. Kate walks stiffly into the room with a bloody knife in her hand. She immediately sits down BESIDE (not on top of) the bed and curls her knees up to her chest and begins to rock back and forth. Many many hours pass by. Voice mails are left on the answering machine down stairs, and after several more hours, Kate's female friend shows up. She comes in the house, calling for Kate and then she stumbles upon Micah's body (presuming from her screaming). Kate NEVER goes down stairs to kill her friend. Kate does, however, stop rocking when her friend begins to scream. Then you hear the front door slam as Kate's friend runs out in a panic. Kate begins to rock back and forth once again. Several more hours pass by when the police show up knocking on the door. They enter the house, calling out if anyone is home. They find Micah's body, and then they head upstairs. While they were downstairs the room at the end of the hall lights up, then the light goes out and a door shuts. The police come up stairs, and see Kate sitting on the floor by the bed. One officer calls out to her and shines a light on her. She stands up immediately and begins to call out for Micah, staggering towards the police in confusion. The police move backwards, directing her to drop the knife as she continue to move forward. Kate was then gunned down in the hall way. We hear talking on the police scanner, then the screen fades to black. "Dedicated to Micah and Kate," is the message on the screen and then the movie is over.

9:20 PM  
Blogger Crichton said...

The police ending stated above was incorrect (the one that stated that Kate stood on the bed after killing Micah, and that she went down stairs and killed her friend as well).

After killing Micah down stairs, Kate comes back up stairs and upon entering the room with the bloody knife, she immediately sat down BESIDE the bed and curled her knees up to her chest and began to rock back and forth. Several hours pass by with voice mails being left on the answering machine down stairs. After a while, Kate's female friend shows up. She calls out for Kate and ends up stumbling upon Micah's body (presumed from her sudden screaming). Kate stops rocking when she hears the screaming, but she does not get up. Her friend runs out of the house, slamming the door behind her, and then Kate continues to rock back and forth. Hours later, police show up. As they are down stairs you see the bedroom down the hall, light up. After a minute the light goes out and a door is shut. The police come upstairs to find Kate. When an officer calls out to her and shines a light on her, she stands up. She staggers towards the officer, still holding the knife, and she calls out for Micah in confusion. The officers tell her to drop the knife, but she continues to advance towards them calling out for Micah. She is gunned down in the hall way. We hear voices over the police radio, and then fade to black. The words, "Dedicated to Kate and Micah" are displayed on a black screen, and then the movie ends.

9:27 PM  
Blogger graciela. said...

One of the comments here alluded to the fact that you shouldn't be so scared of a movie when there are real throat slashings and murdering of children in the real world. I think that is a valid argument as any but what I take from it is that those things are too real and too uncomfortable for us to deal with. The joy and pleasure that some get out of the horror genre would not translate into any positive feeling if one were to witness those very things in person, without a camera or a script.

Whenever I go hiking in the mountains, my number one fear is that I will find a dead body. I've never really worried about that in a movie. I've seen many. But there is a safety, a distance, and a fantasy that one gets from horror films that results in the ultimate fulfillment of being scared and watching violence from afar. I won't say that that makes us sick in the head but I just find it interesting that we take pleasure from the fantasy of events that would fill us with guilt if we found pleasure from them if they were real. The human psyche and moral system is made up of such cognitive dissonance that I wonder if we struggle with it because we try to deny our animal nature in place of culture. We will never act like a lion who kills all the cubs in a pride so that he can establish himself as the new king, but we might love a serial killer who does the same in a movie. So that's why people don't get off on watching the news. I think we're well aware that the world is a scary place. But worldly scary and movie scary are nowhere near the same thing. Escapism has been around since the first human told his tribe the embellished story of hunting and being a local hero. Imagination is the thrill we employ to learn about the world and come to terms with the horrors of life itself.

12:43 AM  
Blogger Buncy said...

A lot of very effective suggestions, but none of those involving sequels or prequels should be entertained for too long. Best to just let it stand alone on its own merits.

Considering the demon's previous victim died, it wouldn't be too out of the way to have:
Micah's body being thrown, Kate walking up and standing there, staring at the camera, then silting her own throat. She falls, and we see the bathroom light turn on, then the door slam, then the light flickers off from underneath the door.
Basically, the demon has left to haunt someone else, as it has had its fun with this couple, and the viewers unfortunate enough to find the scene.

Now, is it just me, or did anyone else notice that in the theatrical cut, the demon fully walks up in front of the camera, then there's a flash of some grey outline (before the body flies)? I only saw the bottom of it (looked like the bottom v section of a Batman logo.

12:46 AM  
Blogger Helen said...

amazing!!!Love the ending too! Im not easily to be scared but after that movie i wished i saw it while day lite.

7:33 PM  
Blogger Stick Figure of Death said...

Just read on wiki, paranormal 2 is being planned

8:30 PM  
Blogger Mafferz said...

As someone mentioned above...

There is a fourth ending (or at least, a variant on one of the other 3!).

In the version I just watched, Katie does not at any point leave the bedroom to kill her friend downstairs, but just remains sat near the bed, rocking. You hear her friend entering the house and finding Micah's body. Time continues to pass... the police arrive, Katie gets up - knife in hand and gets shot dead. END

6:15 AM  
Blogger Jessikaa! said...

i think this movie was really good. i saw it Saturday night and was shaken. i thought the Hollywood ending fit the movie very well and gave a last GOOD scare. The ending i saw about her sitting by her bed rocking for days, that bored me to death. I hated that ending and was very disappointed when i saw it.

7:14 AM  
Blogger cbourlier23 said...

ok the police ending:

I do consider this one to be the dominant of the 3 endings. many comments in here suggest a couple different scenarios about how katie was killed and how time passes. i saw this ending personal at the hollwood "Frightfest" and paid extreme attention to detail.

It does basically go the way everyone explains with minor deffects. when the girlfriend actually enters the house katie stops rocking as if to get up but doesnt.

I notice that people comment thhat only hours go by while she is rocking beside the bed. during the ending i saw while she is rocking there the camara would fade out periodically and ould come back in on a different time of the day (expressed by the lighting in the room) obviously making SEVERAL days pass.

ok now the way katie dies is a big part in the police ending. you hear the police come in and stumble on micahs body. only once you hear the officers tone of speech change is when the light at the end of the hallway turns on. once the light turns on katie starts rocking slower and slower. you see the officers flashlight finally reach the stairway and that is when the light immediately turns off as if someone is scared in that room. once the officers make it upstairs and katie starts coming at them with confusion you have to pay very close attention to the door to the back room because this is the reason why she dies. you notice that once katie gets close to these already on edge police officers the back room door slams shut and startles the officer on the left hand side of the screen so much that it forces him to fire his gun.

yes i tried to pay close attention. this is what i saw.

1:17 PM  
Blogger cbourlier23 said...

oh and a little side "blooper" comment about the movie. im pretty sure that around the beginning of the movie katie explains into the camara that every night before they go to bed they would lock all the doors and windows and always turn the alarm on before bed each night...

did anyone here an alarm go off or see kate turn it off on her way out when she went outside that night and sat on the swing? i sure didnt hahaha sounds like someone made a booboo and forgot to play along.

1:25 PM  
Blogger Tessa said...

I was only able to read through about half of the comments so I'm not sure if this was ever settled. I've only seen one version which I just finished about 5 minutes ago, that I downloaded off the internet, and it the ending where she comes back up the stairs with the blood on her shirt and knife in hand. She sits by the side of the bed rocking back and forth for a couple days. In that time you hear the phone ring and a message left. You also hear her girlfriend come by around 9 pm come in, see Micah dead, screams out the door. Some time goes by and the police come in 2 deep and then they come up the stairs, sees Katie with the knife approaching them (while she's comes out of the demonic stage asking for Micah) but they shoot her once and she's dead on the spot. In my opinion I was definitely expecting the throat slashing ending. I feel it's much more appropriate but I also have not seen the ending that's shown in theaters.

2:16 PM  
Blogger jon said...

cbourlier23 - I caught that blooper too! Anyone ever see the 90210 episode when Dylan and Brenda get a hotel room, start to make out and forget to close the hotel room door. Best TV f' up ever! But I digress.

In my opinion the theatrical version is the scarier of the two versions I've seen - the police ending and demon ending. Demon ending could've been done better though, but creeped my out for a few long nights.

Such a good movie and a great mind f'. I didn't care for Blair Witch and dislike it when people make comparisons of that horse crap to PA.

8:46 AM  
Blogger ExTerm said...

I dunno, I think if they wanted to give a creepy addition to PA2, they could've done an ending like this:

Katie throws Micah at the camera, stares into, takes her nails and literally rips her head off, in complete silence. Then wee see light to the attic turn on.

Screen goes dark, and the credits(if you call them that) roll.

People start to leave, then fade into a home video shot on a HandyCam type device. The home video would have a little girl, doing something random with the mom talking.

Then we would just see in the background move. Then fade to black.

10:37 PM  
Blogger mmLo said...

One small moment now springs to mind...Does anybody else remember one of the first kitchen scenes in which camera shyly and inadvertently focuses on the butcher knife being used to cook with? What a missed opportunity of subtle forshadowing. Perhaps not so much missed (it could have been planned) but by not using it the ending did not amount to it's most powerful potential. I think the throat cutting scene could've had such an incredible impact.

11:25 AM  
Blogger caroline =D said...

With Katie slashing her throat for the ending, it would make my whole body shiver. I absolutely love horror movies, and the blair witch project. The ending with Katie throwing Micah didn't really thrill me. Every girl around me (except me) scremed. But, if the ending was the other one.. I would have chimed in with those other girls.

11:57 AM  
Blogger Brian said...

I'll have to look around and see if I can find the throat cutting ending somewhere. I downloaded and watched the screener (original version with police ending) last night along with the theatrical ending.

I honestly have to say it would have been nice if they'd sort of mixed all three endings. I liked The Blair Witch Project but I'm honestly not into the whole unseen entity and the abrupt ending. Here's how I'd have liked to have seen it:

Kate sits up in bed, gets out to turn around and stare at Micah for about an hour or two, then walks over to him, standing there for another couple hours. Then she proceeds calmly go downstairs and after a moment screams disturbingly loud, as if the demon is literally ripping her open and climbing inside of her. Micah jumps up to come to her aid, the screaming, the loud footsteps upstairs, then she throws Micah hard at the camera who is now dead. However instead the camera is knocked down semi sideways enough to still capture the hallway and bed.

She rocks back and forth through the calls, friend comes over, Kate goes down and kills her, comes back up, this time with the knife she possibly killed Micah and the friend with, and stands close enough to the downed camera that we can't see her upper body. Instead we see her bring the knife up, hear a choking, gargling grunt, a little blood, and then she drops the knife and falls very hard onto the floor. END.

Not too amateur, not too "Hollywood" I'd say. The whole face morph and lunge was too Ring-y/Grudge-y for me.

12:52 PM  
Blogger *********************** said...

I really am not surprised they chose the ending they did....Hollywood is all about sequels, and they didn't even agree to wide-release this until they knew the audience was already there. Now they have a market ripe for #2.


7:46 PM  
Blogger Atul said...

Hi, i had watched this movie and i think its a good movie , the things is that movies like paranormal activity are not for everyone, some like it , some not. ! see me , i also had got download paranormal activity movie

9:09 PM  
Blogger square said...

I actually saw the first cut with the cops who came in and shot Katie. I really didn't like it, and it seemed way to abrupt. Everything leading up to that point was amazing and horrifying, though. One thing I noted: Katie did not get up and go downstairs to kill her friend in the version that I saw. She stayed upstairs, sitting against the bed, rocking. The friend entered, you could hear her walking around and calling out for Micah and Katie, she gasps and screams when she sees Micah and then runs out of the house. Two hours later (about 9pm), the cops show up. Weird...

2:06 PM  
Blogger square said...

Does anyone have a link to the theatrical ending? I've only seen the screening ending w/ the police. I would like to see the demon Katie to make a judgement.

2:31 PM  
Blogger Cheyenne:) said...

okayy . thee ending that they playedd at thee movies was all thee same, micah went chasing after her when she started screaming and then was thrown into the camera & the other ending, after micah ran after katie, he wasnt seen again. andd katie did not kill her friend/sister. she sat on the side of the bed rocking for lyk ever and then her friend/sister left screaming and what have youu . then thee police camee and shot katie after she camee toward them with a knife .

i saw this ending at

i really hopee i dont get in trouble for thtt :)

5:45 PM  
Blogger Cheyenne:) said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

5:51 PM  
Blogger Adam Rinkleff said...

The police ending is absolutely BRILLIANT. It is a real shame they let Hollywood pressure them into cutting it for a cheap thrill and the chance of a sequel. The police ending is the BEST horror movie ending I have ever seen. Its here:

10:58 PM  
Blogger Brei & Charlie said...

What i haven't read here yet is much about the Ouija board scene. I think this scene clarifies for us that the demon indeed had something to do with the burning down of Katie's house when she was younger. The demon clearly took the advantage to communicate with them, so he spells out "goodbye Diane," referencing the girl Micah researches who had the same things happen with her as they have Katie, and then the board catches fire out of no where. If there was no explanation of why her house caught on fire, the Ouija board, photo and information on Diane offers all the explanation we needed.

Just wanted to throw that out there since i hadn't heard much about that yet :)

8:05 AM  
Blogger harding27 said...

hey there. i just watched the movie today and it was ok. but i expected more from it with all the hype. I saw the ending were katie does not kill her friend and the police shoot here. i didnt notice the door slam causing the police officer to shoot so thank you for pointing it out. that makes a lot more sense to me because the police would see that katie was frantic and give her a few more seconds before open firing. i think it was the light from the campera that brough her out of her daze for lack of a better word because if you recall it was the light from the camera that brought her out of that state the first time she walked out of the room. also did anyone else see katie smile in the scene where its daytime and micah has the camera and katie is laying in bed and she says she doesnt want to leave and everything is ok now. then she says "i think everything is ok now" and then smiles? i think its the last day actually. forshadowing of the climax? after reading all of the posts above, i think i would have appreciated the ending where micah is thrown at the camera. someone brought up katie staring in the direction of the camera. that would have been good also. i feel that all the action taking place off screen was unsatisfying. i feel that so much more could have been brought into this movie though! but overall, not too bad. i want to watch it again now to pick up on some of the thing everyone has mentioned here.

9:08 PM  
Blogger Willis said...

First off.. This movie kicks so much booty its ridiculous.. for those who compare, ive seen blair witch (both bootleg and theatre) and this movie trumps that one hardcore.. ive seen two of the supposed three endings and i must say that both of the endings i saw had their own "thing".. I will agree with most of the people here.. i was expecting and waiting to see the scene with Micha being thrown just because of the trailers.. i didnt think it would be THE ending but ohh well.. trying to get that shock dollar i guess.. katie looking in the camera with the demon face was chilling for lack of a better term.. the police ending really reminded me of blair witch because of the uncertainty of what happens after the camera shuts off.. now i dont know if peeps recall this part but the coppers went down the hall and checked the room with the closed door and then came back to the room and noticed the camera setup and asked something like whats this about and shut it off.. i recall one of the comments saying something about the camera battery dying?? umm the camera couldnt have died because it was connected via firewire to the laptop and im guessing that the ac adapter was connected to video camera throughout the night also.. another comment was made about the camera light bringing Katie out of the demonic state.. ummm she didnt even look at the camera and the nightvision was on on the camera.. the coppers flashlights are what "woke her up".. I liked this ending better because, if you think about it, right when the cops shot katie, the door to the room where katie was dragged slammed shut.. this made me think that the demon was done with what they wanted to do and it was time to move on.. but thinking about this and reading all the comments i came up with an ending that i think would have been da bidness.. peep this and please lemme know what yall think..

after katie throws micha into the camera you see her standing there with the knife.. she walks toward the camera and drops to her knees in the spot that she was rocking back and forth still facing the camera.. she smiles that demonish smile that she flashed in the bed when she convinced micha to stay and then drags the knife across slicing her throat.. she falls to the floor and bleeds out.. after a moment you hear the heavy footsteps walking from the bedroom towards the bedroom that she was drug to.. the light turns on for about 10 secs and then turns off.. then the door slams shut.. cut to black..

i think it would be a good combo of all the endings..

as far as favorite parts go, the whole movie was my favorite part.. Im into paranormal stuff so this was a really good movie to watch.. it gave me goose bumps.. its been since blair witch that a horror flick has done that.. very good stuff..

1:28 AM  
Blogger Donald said...

Would of like to see Christmas come early and see her holiday hams, who's with me?

7:06 PM  
Blogger whitney said...

I have just watched the movie and I was scared completely. I was sad fort he couple and terrified. It was the utmost thrilling thing I had ever seen. It would have been almost completely believable until the ending.

However, I believe the ending was "half-good". Micah getting thrown into the wall beside the camera gave the character one last moment and displayed the fact that the demon had finally won the battle. The CGI affect on Katie's face, however, destroyed the ending, but necessarily the entire movie. With the CGI scene it destroys the "real" affect that Blair Witch once provided. Though I'll admit to jumping and letting out a yelp, because it was frightening,it did nothing for the believer's of the show. Her rocking beside the bed and the police and friend entering the scene gives it a much more real affect and keeps it subtly terrifying like the rest of the film.

7:19 PM  
Blogger tyler_lewis10 said...

Hello everybody, I saw this movie October 31st, 2009. Halloween night, yes i know a horrible idea. I was completely terrified. This movie is everything people are saying it is, gruesome, terrifieing, insane, and it WILL leave you paranoid for weeks to come. But I was reading the comments about the ending and she does not stand on the bed she sits there with the knife in her stomach,(i'm almost completely sure) rocking back and forth, back and forth, for days.

2:23 PM  
Blogger blankblog said...

The police ending is more emotionally effectice when Micah is killed downstairs and "Katie" comes back up and rocks by the bed for days, this is the demon enraged and must be torturing her mentaly and when the Police come up the stairs it leaves her in order to rid her since it couldn't have Katie. I can't wait for the aditional footage on BD.

9:07 AM  
Blogger Todd Ford said...

I think the ending we have makes quite a bit of sense. On the surface, we get the standard, looking the audience in the eye creepiness when the possessed Katie looks into the camera lens. But it is really Micah and then the camera itself that she is acting against, at least if the movie is interpreted allegorically.

That said. I find myself very anxious to see the various alternate endings that will surely be included on the DVD.

11:24 AM  
Blogger Eric said...

Without having read all the comments on here ('cuz there's so many), I hafta say I think the final theatrical ending works best. Given that the movie is called "Paranormal Activity", it makes the most sense that the climax deliver the highest point of paranormal activity in the entire movie. The two alternate endings could be attributed merely to psychotic behavior and, let's face it, there's nothing new or shocking about stabbings, shootings and suicide. After sitting through an entire movie of clever gimmicks, it's nice to cap it off with something really over the top and genuinely supernatural. I wasn't terribly impressed with the ending, but certainly appreciate it more now that I know what the alternatives were.

2:41 PM  
Blogger Anomaly said...

I like J's alternate ending idea of possessed Katie throwing Micah into the camera and then staring at it for hours. That would have creeped ANYONE out. And yes, it would have certainly given the impression that the demon might well possess US next.

I would only add Katie walking silently downstairs, and fading out to "Micah's body was discovered by police -- Katie's whereabouts are unknown."

I have heard from both sides of the fence that this was fictional and that it was real. It looked real enough to me at first, as it states "the families of" Micah Sloat and Katie Featherston, as well as the police department. Epic BOOOOOO!!! to the editors for misleading us so horrendously.

However, a quick visit to the movie's website, as well as others, revealed:

A) The movie was filmed in the director's own home

B) Katie Featherston and Micah Sloat are the ACTORS in the movie.

The theatrical ending fits well, even though some may not like the idea of a sequel/prequel. This allows a "Ring Two" sort of comeback, and a creepy one at that.

The theatrical ending, while forcing us to assume that possessed Katie disappears and is still on the loose, still leaves the door open for such a prequel / sequel. Much more creepy than the demon making her kill herself, but consider this......

I think we are meant to believe she was already dead when Micah went downstairs. We hear her scream, and Micah wakes up to come to the rescue. When she finally appears to throw Micah's body into the camera, we see the entire belly area of her top stained with blood, as if she had stabbed herself in the gut or chest.

I, for one, prefer this ending. The throat-slashing would make it a little too cut-and-dried for me.

This may be a little much, but you know what would be really creepy?

Have her throw Micah against the camera, slash her throat, fall dead, then stand up minutes later, and retrieve the knife. Then stand and stare into the camera for hours, as if scanning and studying the audience, then walk downstairs. Then fade to the title of Micah's body being discovered days later and Katie's whereabouts still unknown.

9:56 PM  
Blogger David Marin-Guzman said...

Lacan avec Sartre on why the new ending doesn't work:

"In so far as I am under the gaze, Sartre writes, I no longer see the eye that looks at me, and if I see the eye, the gaze disappears."

12:12 AM  
Blogger Spartacus said...

Hmm, I agree that the current theatrical ending could be improved upon in just about any way.

What I would have really liked, and this is influenced by all the comments I've read here, is thus:

I like the time-lapse possession trick. Very nice creep out and it shows that the situation is out of the characters' control. So start with that as is.. Removing the sheet, and staring directly at Micah for hours. After, she calmly walks downstairs.
Then panicked screaming, possibly with digital demonic influence in her voice to cue you in that Micah's being baited. He wakes, runs down, and you hear screams and a struggle for around 10 seconds. Perhaps a moment of silence, followed by a final scream. Then, once silence has settled in the theatre, and everyone is expecting something to come into the hall, the camera is softly picked up by the unseen force, and carried as steadily as possible down the stairs.
The camera films the bodies for some time. Micah has been stabbed, and Katie has a slit throat. I would see this as Micah being killed during the possession, and Katie's suicide at her realisation of what she's done after the possession breaks.
Then lights go out, and the camera drops suddenly to the floor, ending the recording.
I don't think any text at the fade out would be needed.

This manages to cover a few concerns from the discussion. It shows the demon has a tangible presence (although I feel the rest of the film conveys this convincingly) and has an awareness of the camera and it's potential, similar to if she stared into it while possessed. It provides the cathartic hit of violence some people are keen for, after all that tension crated by the build up. We have the throat-slitting, albiet off camera, and we have the demon leaving on his own free will, now that the girl is useless. So.. the sequel window is left open too. Although of course, that's a lame idea.

As a side note, I interpret the story of Diane as a suicide, as a way of escaping the haunting after it became unbearable. I don't think the demon likes to destroy his own playthings first-hand. That's a cheap victory compared to corrupting them (or their nearest and dearest) into some form of destruction the hard way.

6:51 AM  
Blogger Trouble Maker said...

i think this all real and you shouldn't be playing with this i watched the movie and that IS what happened according to the police.but what happened to the girlfriend?oh,and the last part where the girl smiles at you and comes to us is creepy.

9:52 AM  
Blogger Cris said...

Hah! How about the demon possessing her friend next as another alternate ending instead?

9:56 AM  
Blogger Anomaly said...

The movie, at least, is not real. It may be loosely based on true events, but Katie Featherston and Micah Sloat are actors and you can catch them on the net in an interview about another movie they are in.....

The movie was filmed in the director's home.

12:42 PM  
Blogger JL said...

If we had gotten one of the other endings, minus the knife, I'd agree with you. What I don't like about the knife endings is just that, the knife. Katie coming up the stairs and into the room, covered in blood and holding no visible weapon gave the ending so much more of a demonic feeling to it, ignoring the whole demonface thing.

9:22 PM  
Blogger Stephan said...

The ending where the cops enter the room and shoot Katie. Just before they enter the room you see the lights go on and off in the room directly across the hall. I think it gives the idea that the demon left Katie's body and just leaves her there?

5:49 AM  
Blogger Kevin said...

Great analysis. I think you nailed it. Both the police-ending and the Spielberg-ending aren't satisfying. At least they should bring out a special edition DVD with the third, more cruel ending on it.

7:52 AM  
Blogger jbro1104 said...

Ok, this may be a late post, but I actually like the police ending, and if you didn't understand it, just because Katie was killed doesn't mean the demon was. Katie's soul would've been taken by the demon, I'm not sure what would've happened to Micah's, I think his would've been spared. If this movie really was fake, I'm one pissed off fat guy. And there's only a few things worse than a pissed off fat guy. E.G. a pissed off fat girl??? Really though, great movie, it doesn't need a sequel. PS, all the other endings are way too Hollywood.

8:02 AM  
Blogger VickyJane said...

Please read my whole thing before you judge me :)

Well, I must say, when watching this film, at first i was dissapointed. I seriously could have fallen asleep. But, knowing that it was simular to the 'Blaire Witch' film, i was determined that it was going to get more interesting. Also, everynight, something more happened, and each night got scarier + scarier, So i knew that it WAS actually worth watching after all, and the ending would be scary.

The ending i saw was when katie gets out of bed, stands over her boyfriend for about 3 hours. Then goes downstairs. You hear her scream + micah runs down. They both scream and it is silent for about 10 seconds. Then you hear footsteps coming up the stairs. (Now at this point, i was actually really, really scared. I didnt know what to expect) Then after another few seconds of silence, she throws micah at the camera. (Possibly the scariest split second of my life..) Then jumps on him, sniffs him, licks him or whatever she does, then turns to the camera and glares with her demon face.

I was stunned. The ending made it all worthwhile i think. Like i mentioned, at first it was so boring, then from where scene where she gets dragged down the hallway > the end, i was actually scared xD

Personally, i think the ending where she comes back upstairs, rocks back and fourth curled up in a ball, then the police come and shoot her. IS CRAP. to make that scene way better, what SHOULD happen is:
Katie should be in her room. Then the police come and shoot her several times. Then when they go to the back rooms, she should get up, walk to the camera, smile, and turn it off.
now THAT would be creepy xD

i also really want to see the throat slitting one. it sounds creepy. if anyone knows of a link that ACTUALLY WORKS, please inform me :)!

the BEST ending though would be:
Katie wakes up and walks to Micah's side of the bed. Stands over him for ages. Then goes downstairs. Screams for Micah. He then runs down after her. He then shouts "WTF IS THAT! AHHH!". Then everything goes silent for a few seconds. Then she should walk back upstairs. Throw Micah at the camera. Then she jumps on him and sniffs him. Looks at the camera with her demon face. Then the demon should go out of her and she falls next to Micah. She wakes up and crawls to the bedside. She does her whole Rocking back and fourth thing lol. Then the police come in and see Micah's dead body. Then they shoot Katie, believing that she's just murdered him. Then as they turn their backs, Katie should get up, walk to the camera. smile. then turn the camera off.

There, 2 endings mixed in 1. FTW.
overall rating for me = 7/10.
:) x

5:52 AM  
Blogger sian220 said...

sorry but the ending you describe with the police is wrong. She doesn't go down to kill her friend. Her friend screams [on finding the body of Micah] and leaves.
Which is why the police turn up.

4:11 PM  
Blogger Elle said...

I saw this film yesterday.
In the ending I saw Katie sits upright and walks to stand over Micah for a few hours. Then she walks down stairs and starts screaming his name, which he then wakes up to and rushes after her.
There's then some more screaming from both of them and it suddenly goes silent.
I think there's some footsteps and then Micah's body gets thrown at the camera and hits the ground. Katie is stood in the doorway covered in blood and walks over to Micah's body. She seems to smell it and then looks at the camera. Her face then changes to something demonic and she lunges at the camera.
The writing that follows says something like:
'The police found Micah's body the next day but Katie hasn't been seen since'
Which I think is meant to scare you into thinking she might come after you, she's still 'out there'.

5:49 AM  
Blogger alan miah said...

Are you lot watching the same film as me? The ending is different to what I saw. According to my version. Katie kills Micah then comes back upstairs and sits rocking back and forth. The clock ticks. Her friend enters the house and gets killed (not by Katie) as she is still sat down. Then the cops back in and kill Katie.

1:49 PM  
Blogger royz said...

@alan miah.

that's the original police ending. but i think the woman that went inside the house the next day didn't die. she went inside and saw mica's dead body that's why she screamed. went out the house and call the police.

4:16 AM  
Blogger Vince said...

I don't agree at all. Why would the demon keep her alive all these years just to have her commit suicide now, that makes no sense, and any explanation of this would be a stretch to "make it fit". Also, why does she have to "put on a show" for the camera while she does it?? Yes, it's too much of a stretch to say "the camera is now the demon's eyes", that's just ridiculous, IMO.

The cop ending is the best by FAR, because it keeps true to actually what would probably happen if this were real, although I really don't think she had to be shot dead by the police. Then again, I see why they had to do it that way, since otherwise she'd be alive after it ends, and require further "follow-up" details.

10:44 AM  
Blogger SoloLover said...

I look at horror films not of how they make you feel during them but after it. The movie did not scare me...after the movie did. I felt myself scared beyond belief. The feeling someones watching you. After the movie was done it was around 1am. The ending i saw was the cop one...did not like it all that much. I've been reading for about an hour now and no luck finding other endings... one I have seen though is the one were she kills her boy friend then slits her throat. It was okay but defeats the purpose of the whole movie, as some of you have pointed out (sorry for repetitive response to that but my point of view xD). They could pull off a prequel, they don't have to use the camera sort of thing...if could work to do that to but i wouldn't advise it. You can show story plots of the chick before Katie slowly drove to the point were the exercisim took place. If they wanted to and i dont know about they could make it into 2 parts one of the girl before her and then Katie's childhood.... Just giving ideas. sequel probably wouldn't be a good idea because you have to make a whole new you include Kate? If so how would you include her? I really hope there is a prequel though because i enjoyed the film. Peace xD

4:16 AM  
Blogger daniel john said...

The female friend comes to the house and the possessed Katie walks down again and kill her friend. Katie walks up to the bed again. Counter records more days passing. THEN police comes to the house and shot Katie.
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11:19 PM  
Blogger Lanthanum said...

i think i should watch the entire movie...

3:57 AM  
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6:05 AM  
Blogger Kayleigh said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

11:45 AM  
Blogger Kayleigh said...

Loved this review. But as other people have stated I also got a slightly different version of the police ending.

After the couple sleep for a short while Katie gets up, turns around and stares at Micah from her side of the bed for a few hours. Then she slowly walks downstairs. After a few moments blood curdling screaming is heard from downstairs and Micah urgently trundles out of the room and darts downstairs, calling for Katie.

More screaming is heard as I think a panicked Micah tries to ask her what's wrong. Then silence.

Katie heavily, almost stomping, walks upstairs with the large knife in her hand as seen at the beginning of the movie when Micah is chopping vegetables. She simply sits down on the floor with her back to the bed and rocks back and forth. She does this for several days during which the morning alarm goes off and a worried answer phone message is left, neither of which seem to affect her state at all. Eventually Katie's friend arrives and is heard calling for Katie from downstairs. It sounds like she's searching all around the downstairs floor until she finds, what I thought would be Micah's dead body but it sounds like something much more strange happens. When the friend's screams begin to be heard from downstairs Katie stops rocking. A scuffling sound starts like a physical struggle where it sounds like she is being attacked. All the while Katie sits upstairs, beside the bed, in her paused state. Once the screams stop with a concluding bang Katie resumes her rocking. The rest carries out with the police ending as described before.

I found this ending very strange. I was left wondering what on earth could have attacked Katie's friend downstairs? Was it Micah? Was it the demon? It couldn't have been Katie because she was sat in front of the camera the entire time.

I came up with different theories that entertained my thoughts long after the movie finished. When Katie stopped rocking perhaps that was the demon leaving her body momentarily to enter Micah's body. Or perhaps the demon actually manifested itself in front of the friend as the dark mass that Katie describes having seen when she was 8 yrs old near the beginning of the movie. All of these possibilities were swimming in my mind of what could have happened, which I think would allow any audience member to use their imagination to come up with a version most satisfying to them.

11:46 AM  
Blogger Kayleigh said...

However, I really like the sound of the third ending that was described in this review. Katie slits her throat in front of the camera without looking into the lens. That seems like it would have wrapped up the movie nicely.

Also, it references the first time we see the knife at the beginning. When Micah is, I think, talking about people coming over to help. Talking to the camera he says something like "and they'll (slit throat motion with knife) take care of it". Very haunting. From what I've read about demon possession, referencing past actions is apparently always what the demon does. Which is why I feel I have to appreciate this ending more.

11:46 AM  
Blogger Namdnal Siroj said...

For me, the horror of this movie is in the concept of "inviting evil in by giving it attention".
That idea is closely tied with with my idea of what fear is, and with why I'm interested in horror in the first place: psychological amplifier interference.
The emotion of fear can be very hard to deal with, because the very nature or purpose of fear is to make you avoid knowing it.

Paranormal Activity seems to be an evolution off of the video-tape from The Ring, where the audience is a "witness".
In PA, the action of watching the movie places the audience in the position where it is forced to confront and empower the evil, as an "accomplice".

The boyfriend wants to see and confront the evil, but that effectively makes him a catalyst for the evil actually taking place.
The audience is forced to identify with the boyfriend, but in a very intelligent way: the boyfriend is almost "just another audience member".
It makes you imagine how much the entity might be empowered by many people watching its manifestation, and it makes you feel as if you're inviting evil by watching the movie.

The audience is almost an actor in this movie. The horror is in the audience imagining what might happen after seeing it, because they saw it.

4:32 AM  
Blogger Lyndon said...

I've just been reading through some of the comments regarding the ending that has the police show up.

In the version I saw Katie kills Micah downstairs then returns to beside the bed rocking back and forth for a day or two. The girlfriend is heard entering the house and finding Micah's body at which point she leaves the house terrified and supposedly alerts the police who turn up shortly after. In this version Katie did not kill the girlfriend as I have read in other people's accounts.

Now, remeber the light that they used down the end of the upstairs hallway to provide that little bit of light down there? I seem to remember in the version I saw that at the time the police can be heard downstairs discovering Micah's body and Katie is still sat beside the bed, that distant hallway light turns off (and maybe back on?). This would suggest that at the time the police came upstairs the demon had left Katie's body. She gets up utterly confused and she moves towards the police with genuine concern for Micah and is sadly killed because she still carries the knife.

I kind of liked this ending as it gave Katie, at the last moment, her innocence back to suffer a fate devised by the evil demon. It was almost like a jealousy killing masterminded by the demon.

What it also did was to leave the door wide open for a sequel as we know the demon will now find someone else.

5:49 AM  
Blogger Desi said...

I liked the movie. Kinda spooky but... Does anyone know how I can see the 3rd ending? The one with the police? What is the site?

10:22 AM  
Blogger brendan said...

I think it would be cooler if we see the thrown boyfriend scene, along with Kate slashing her own throat. The time-lapse of her female friend calling to check up on where she has been. Then maybe she comes to check up on them, and then goes upstairs looking for signs of life. From the camera's view we would see her come in, have a shocked and scared look on her face, and then back out of the room. As she turns around, we see demon footprints from walking through the blood follow after her and the door slam. Although this would open the gates for a sequel with Kate's friend possessed by this demon, I would rather not see that happen. I find it better to think that it just latched onto another victim in a totally arbitrary manner rather than some pre-destined kind of deal where the victim lives knowing they have a demon following them around all of their life. This way seems like it could happen to anyone and would fit (in an eerie way) with why normal, functional people sometimes do randomly crazy things like kill their loved ones or commit suicide with little or no reason.

In fact, it would be interesting to end with news footage of the exorcist/adviser guy being called into question for having been in contact with multiple people who committed atrocities (killed their boyfriends, drowned their kids, or anything else that was against there nature) assuming that he was associated with some type of cult or conducting weird hypnotism experiments. I think that would be cool because it would like the demon's "jumps" to other victims.

Maybe I'm going way to deep into this. Just an idea. I really liked the film and liked the thrown boyfriend ending as well. Like most, I was disappointed in the CGI demon face. It seemed to cliche. I was totally ready for this, which made it just seem corny to me. It would have been more of a psychological mind-f*ck had it been more subtle and disturbing. I don't necessarily like the idea of the slit throat without knowing the demon jumped to another host. Otherwise it seems like the demon died with her. I liked the idea of hours of her standing over the camera looking at us. Even though it smacks of "The Ring", it would makes us feel like the demon has finally turned it's attention to us. It turns us from just being the voyeur into the one being watched. Since the demon was intent on killing the last person it stared at like that, it would be creepy to think of ourselves as the next victim.

3:20 PM  
Blogger Darb said...

Hello Everyone

I have studied religious malevolence for a while now and would like to speak of the superb research the writers and director did with this film. The general idea here is that this evil spirit has become fixated on Kate, but to totally possess Kate, the spirit must first cut off emotional and spiritual support from Micah. It is generally speculated that demons and the like feast off of negative energy and negative experiences, so Micah taunting it and any relationship fighting further fuels the demon's lust for Kate.

As the movie progresses and Micah becomes foolishly more brash with the spirit, the hauntings become more physical and more blunt. The scene indicating that the spirit seemingly punched the photograph and left marks on Micah was a warning to both the audience and Micah.

I suspect that Kate's captor had wanted to eliminate Micah early on in the movie as depicted as the first time she stood up staring at him for hours. It was probably the young girl's will that kept the demon at bay or the demon didn't have a large enough hold over her. There have been case sutides of possession (if that is your cup of tea) where people can become trasnfixed on something for days.

It has been speculated that slitting her own throat would somehow damage the movie's integrity. I would like to point out that in the case of Kate and Micah, Micah was the focal point of Kate's emotional attachment. For all the pain he brought her with his idiotic ideas, she loved him very much and he obviously had a deep devotion for her. A demon exists to purely cause pain, torment, and evil. There is nothing more evil than having a hand in the destruction of something or someone you love.

I think this is the reason the demon chose to come to Kate again, after burning her house down yearly earlier. He also had some business to attend to in the form of Diane as well. The bottom line is that to a spirit like this, murdering Micah using Kate's hand would have been a sense of enjoyment for the demon to the equivalent that you or I just gor a promotion or a new car. Killing her at the end would have satisfied the lust for total power, over her mind, body, and soul.

But also killing her sister would have been in keeping with the basic agenda. Very good movie though, and I'm glad that I got the experience.

5:39 AM  
Blogger Tamandro said...

The one with the cops kept it more realistic to me. Slit throat ending left me like...."thas it?" The one where she does the Criss Angel cam swallow was too soon on some M. Night Shyamalan, it was an alien the whole time type shit.

DOES ANYBODY KNOW anything about the ending where Mich kills Katie? Ive seen screen shots of the ending and people were saying Mich ended up killing Katie.

1:31 AM  
Blogger salvador said...

I love the movies and what not BUT, i see a prob...with the endings ONLY ONE goes with the second one..

because in the second one you get a message after the movie ends that katie and hunter are not yet found.. and also the daughter with the boy friend is alive.. so that goes to show that katie killing her self or getting shot would cancel the second one.. unless katie gets back up and kills the cops.. now i havent rewatched them both and see how the Dates go because i dont have them but i would love to see how they connect if anyone knows... and does anyone know a link to watch all the endings to the first one since no one really knows which one is the "original"

11:43 PM  
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