30 Nights of Paranormal Activity With the Devil
Fox // R // $22.98 // January 15, 2013
Review by Aaron Beierle | posted March 14, 2013
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Graphical Version
Review:

Movies like this make me sad about movies. While I thought the parody genre had realized that there's only one Zucker Brothers (well, there's two, but you get what I mean) after the failures of "Date Movie" and "Epic Movie" (and how could I forget, "Meet the Spartans"), not only are these movies still being made, but they're made in increasingly cheap, knock-off fashion.

"30 Nights of Paranormal Activity with the Devil Inside the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" is depressing not just because it's bad (it is), but because it's wholly and completely "product", to the point where the same director has created a little industry in it - Craig Moss was also behind "The 41-Year-Old Virgin Who Knocked Up Sarah Marshall and Felt Superbad About It" and "Breaking Wind" (a parody, of course, of "Twilight: Breaking Dawn".)

People know the parodied movies (well, less so with some of the ones here), the movie costs a few bucks to make and the studio may make a decent little profit on rentals (and maybe a sale or two.) It's a mentality that unfortunately continued even as there's less and less "direct-to-DVD" and more and more "direct-to-digital."

"30 Nights of Paranormal Activity with the Devil Inside the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" ("30 Nights" from here on out, because it's not worth writing the whole thing again and again) focuses on Dana (Kathryn Fiore) and Aaron (Flip Schultz), a pair of parents (they met on "The Bachelor" - ha. ha. ha...) who move into the house that was once owned by Dana's family. It was also the site where her father murdered the cast of "The Artist".

The majority of the picture follows the "Paranormal Activity" route, but there's also bits of "Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter", "Girl With the Dragon Tattoo" (the daughter has a lot of tattoos) and other references, including "Storage Wars", Adele (an awful bit), "Black Swan" (not funny, just apparently needed to reference something) and a bizarre reference to Super Mario Brothers. The whole "Artist" aspect doesn't make any sense, given the time frame, but it's a comedy, right? Yeah, that's true - and maybe if I was laughing I wouldn't be pondering such things.

It's entirely a matter of throwing things at the wall in the hopes that something sticks and little of it does. It's mainly fart gags, sex gags (the parents dress up in bondage gear and tell their daughter to order pizza when she walks in on them.) The worst efforts from the Wayans Brothers would be preferable to this - I'd rather watch "White Chicks" for 24 hours straight than have to sit through this again.

The performances aren't very good, but to their credit, they're working with material that feels like it was written by a 10-year-old. "30 Nights" is lousy, but it's particularly depressing because it doesn't feel like anyone involved really cares - it's a paycheck for a product (apparently these lousy spoof movies still find an audience.)

VIDEO:
Fox presents "30 Nights" in 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen. Sharpness and detail are unremarkable, but satisfactory and consistent. Some minor artifacting was seen on a couple of occasions, but the picture otherwise looked clean. Colors looked a tad on the subdued side, but that appears to be by intent.

AUDIO:
The Dolby Digital 5.1 presentation is dialogue-driven, with limited involvement from the rear speakers. Audio quality was fine, with well-recorded dialogue.

EXTRA: "Behind the Scenes" documentary where everyone congratulates themselves for being funny. I'd like to see the movie they're talking about.

FINAL THOUGHTS: I hate this kind of thing - it's total product. I suppose I was hoping in the back of my mind that there would be some small chance that this picture would be "so bad it's good", but it wasn't even that. Skip it.


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