The end is near in the first trailer for "Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension," the sixth and -- if producers are to be believed -- final installment of the found-footage horror franchise.
Set for release a week before Halloween, "Ghost Dimension" will follow a fresh family (Chris J. Murray, Brit Shaw and Ivy George) as they move into a new house and find an old video camera and box of tapes in the garage.
Of course, this being a horror movie, the tapes are full of creepy footage, including a curiously interactive clip of two young girls whom fans will recognize as the tormented sisters Kristi and Katie. And, this being a "Paranormal" movie, the camera gets an upgrade: This one can detect spirits invisible to the naked eye, phenomena which will be rendered in 3-D inside the multiplex.
The trailer's intertitles promise that "every secret will be revealed" in the film, and microbudget horror maestro Jason Blum likewise pledged that the franchise is "coming to an end" during a recent interview with USA Today.
"This is it, the finale," the producer said. "We're saying it before the movie opens. We're not going to grind this horror franchise into the ground."
Sticking to that "Seinfeld"-like vow could prove prudent, as the "PA" franchise has been cooling for a while now. The fifth installment, "The Marked Ones," grossed less than "Paranormal Activity 4" domestically and abroad, and "4" was itself a step down from "3."
Other modern-day horror franchises have similarly struggled to churn out new installments while still maintaining their freshness, such as the "Saw" series, which made it to seven films. Then again, in the spirit realm of Hollywood, one can never be certain that what's passed on won't someday return to haunt us.