The 'Paranormal Activity' Movie Franchise

Demons and Recording Devices Are the Hallmarks of This Series

The "Paranormal Activity" franchise features "found footage" of supposedly real events that happened to a pair of California sisters who are menaced by a demonic force.

Spoilers ahead!

Video camera footage from the fall of 2006 shows a young couple -- Katie and her boyfriend, Micah -- settling into their new suburban San Diego home. Katie thinks she's been haunted since childhood by a ghost, and although Micah is skeptical, he sets up cameras around the house to capture any evidence of the supernatural. After twists and turns, Micah ends up dead and Katie ends up missing. 

In 2006, Kristi (sister of Katie from the first movie) and her husband, Dan, return to their Carlsbad, California, home one day to find it ransacked in this prequel to the first movie in the franchise. Dan installs security cameras throughout the house, and the video cameras catch a series of strange movements and noises that seem to be centered around son Hunter. This film also centers on a demon entity that is connected to Katie. Many characters wind up dead by the end of this one, with Katie once again missing, this time with Hunter along with her. 

This prequel begins in 2005 with Katie delivering a box of videotapes to Kristi's house for safekeeping (which are mysteriously stolen a year later during the ransacking from "Paranormal Activity 2"). Inside are home videos from September 1988 that reveal an ordeal the sisters experienced as girls that they don't fully recollect as adults. This film sets up the stories told in the first two movies of the franchise. Deaths abound here, too. 

'Paranormal Activity 4' (2012)

'Paranormal Activity 4' teaser poster
© Paramount

Five years after the events in ​"Paranormal Activity" and ​"Paranormal Activity 2," Katie and Hunter's whereabouts are still unknown. But they show up in a suburban neighborhood in Henderson, Nevada, where a reclusive single mother (Katie) and her young son move into the house across the street from 15-year-old Alex and her family. More deaths eventually ensue and viewers find out what happened to Hunter.   

'Paranormal Activity 5' (2014)

This film takes place in Oxnard, California, in 2012, where a group of Latino high school students feels threatened by a cult and its demon. This film follows the same pattern as previous ones in the franchise, with recording devices playing a role in the action and a variety of paramormal events involving a demon wreaking havoc to all involved.

'Paranormal Activity 6' (2015)

The latest movie in the "Paranormal" franchise follows a new family that moves into a house in Santa Rosa, California, in 2013 and there they discover a box of videotapes that include the demonization of Katie and Kristi as children, whose stories are told in previous films.​ And then weird stuff starts to happen. ​They have a daughter, ​Leila, who was born on the same day as Hunter in the previous movies, ​and it seems that the old demon is back, this time targeting this ​little girl. As in the previous films, video devices play a role in recording paranormal events as they occur.