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‘Paranormal Activity 2′ a Hit at U.S. Box Office

A still from ‘Paranormal Activity 2′

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U.S. viewers tuned into the paranormal over the weekend, as the year’s most anticipated horror film shot to the top of the box office.

With over $40.7 million in ticket sales, ‘Paranormal Activity 2’ claimed the highest opening gross for a supernatural horror film to date.

By contrast, director Clint Eastwood’s new drama ‘Hereafter’, which also featured supernatural themes, grossed only $12 million in fourth place.

Like its low-budget predecessor, ‘Paranormal Activity 2’ was shot in a faux-documentary style and continues the story of married couple haunted by unseen ghosts in their suburban home.

‘Paranormal Activity 2’ was also critically acclaimed for a horror film, receiving a rating of 68% on film review site Rotten Tomatoes from over 84 critics.

Ironically, Clint Eastwood’s ‘Hereafter’ also focused on the afterlife, although in a far more sentimental manner.

An adult drama akin to ‘Gran Torino’, ‘Hereafter’ stars Matt Damon as a factory worker who begins a journey of growth and self-discovery after he discovers his ability to communicate with the spirits of the dead.

However, ‘Hereafter’ received mixed reviews from film critics, only achieving a 51% score on Rotten Tomatoes based on reviews from 140 critics.

Most critics criticised the slow pacing and clichéd nature of the plot, with the site’s consensus stating that ‘[the film] fails to generate drama, straddling the line between sentimentality and hokey tedium’.[i]

Among holdovers, ‘Jackass 3-D’ declined over 58% in its second weekend to $21.3 million in second place, although its total gross of $86.9 million still stands as the highest in the franchise.

On the other hand, action comedy ‘Red’ and Facebook drama ‘The Social Network’ both held exceptionally well in third and fifth place, declining just 31% and 29% to $15 million and $7.3 million respectively.

Top U.S. Box Office Hits

  1. Paranormal Activity 2  -  $40.7 million
  2. Jackass 3-D  -  $21.3 million
  3. Red  -  $15 million
  4. Hereafter  -  $12 million
  5. The Social Network  -  $7.3 million
  6. Secretariat  -  $7 million
  7. Life As We Know It  -  $6.1 million
  8. Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole  -  $3.2 million
  9. The Town  -  $2.7 million
  10. Easy A  -  $1.7 million

‘Paranormal Activity 2′ opens this Thursday in Hong Kong.


[i] http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/hereafter/



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