All The Paranormal Activity Movies (Ranked Worst to Best)

Pictured: A still from the Paranormal Activity franchise when Katie and Kristi were younger.

We have all heard of the Paranormal Activity movies. Currently, there are 7, unless you include the behind-the-scenes movie that the streaming service Paramount+ recently put out.

Wonder which ones are worth the time to watch? Keep reading as we discuss the Paranormal Activity movies from the worst to the best!


7. Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones (2014)

Trailer for The Marked Ones 

Pictured: Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones still.

Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones does not have the same feel as the first two movies, or even the first three movies. Of course, they do not all have to be the same. The only tie between the first few movies and this one is that they find the missing tapes from the third film. It also has a parallel of finding old pictures, as they found a picture of Jesse and at some point, ghostly figures of Katie and Kristi were found. It seems like there was a weird stretch to try to tie this movie to the first three.

The estimated budget of this movie was about $5 million. 


6. Paranormal Activity: Next of Kin (2021)

Trailer for Next of Kin

Pictured: Margot from Paranormal Activity: Next of Kin.

Similarly, to The Marked Ones, this does not feel like it quite fits in with the original premise of the Paranormal Activity movies. I had to rate it low because of that. Do not get me wrong, it is scary as can be, but this movie has nothing to do with Paranormal Activity. In the original movies, they were scarier because you could not necessarily see the demon itself, particularly in the very first one.

Many fans were feeling the same way: that it is a good movie worth watching but it should not have been called Paranormal Activity. An interesting, but sad fact: Next of Kin is the first (and at this point only) film of this franchise that did not get a theatrical release due to COVID-19. It is a Paramount exclusive. 


5. Paranormal Activity 3 (2011)

Trailer for Paranormal Activity 3

Pictured: The movie poster for Paranormal Activity 3.

I am ranking this one a little lower on the scale due how unrealistic it seems to me compared to the others. The plot itself is cool, but it does not quite fit in with the first two. The first two were simplistic, but then this one just took a turn, involving more of the supernatural. Which is cool, but again, it is just stretching it from the original.

Something interesting about this movie, however, is that most of the scenes that are shown in the trailer are not in the actual movie itself. This angered fans, which makes sense. I guess they cannot claim that the whole movie was shown in the trailer, like that often happens, though! 


4. Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension (2015)

Trailer for The Ghost Dimension

Pictured: A still from Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension.

This one is like Paranormal Activity 4 in the sense that it has an emphasis on the kids of the family and imaginary friends. I like all the parallels between this new family and the old, including Katie, Kristi, and Hunter. It was a cool reveal with Hunter and Leila being born on the same day. It is also an interesting twist with the young Kristi and Katie being “aware” of Ryan and his brother Mike as they are watching the old videos of them. It is also interesting that there was an alternate ending to this film.

Fun fact: including this movie, the budget for all the movies was roughly $18 million. 


3. Paranormal Activity 4 (2012)

Trailer for Paranormal Activity 4

Pictured: Alex in Paranormal Activity 4.

Paranormal Activity 4 is not like the first two, but I like the plot more of this one than the third. This one is not as farfetched, but this one also has more of an unrealistic storyline. It is revealed what happened to Hunter from Paranormal Activity 2, though.

It deals with two kids being haunted and that is terrifying. Kids having imaginary friends who can talk and play Kinect is just something else, and then to add the possession ritual just spices it up. It is still unlike the first two movies, but it did introduce the use of a laptop to film as well as cameras.

The actors who played the parents in this one were married in real life, but the sad thing is that Stephen Dunham passed away right before the release of Paranormal Activity 4 due to a heart attack. 


2. Paranormal Activity 2 (2010)

Trailer for Paranormal Activity 2

Pictured: A still from Paranormal Activity 2.

Paranormal Activity 2 was more of a psychological thriller, with a few intense scenes dealing with the paranormal. It answers a few questions from the first one, serving as a prequel for the first one. It explains why Katie was haunted in the original.

Fun fact about this movie: Paranormal Activity 2 broke the record for biggest opening for a horror movie of all time, making $6.3 million the first night it was out. I am ranking this as the second best, since it ties up some loose ends from the first one and it blends seamlessly with the first one, as it shows Katie talking about going out to buy a camera. 

1. Paranormal Activity (2007)

Trailer for Paranormal Activity 

Pictured: A still from Paranormal Activity.

Nothing will ever compare to the original. It has such a simple storyline, but it was terrifying. In my opinion, it is the most realistic one out of all of them which makes it that much scarier. It follows a couple, Katie and Micah, and their story with a demon. It is a tale as old as time: a non-believer who mocks the demon, and the demon, well, gets its revenge.

It involves the possession of one of the main characters which is the cause of the death of another. It is horrifying and that is what makes it the best! 

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