While it maintains what made the first one such a hit, and its ending is a remarkably scary and creep, and even does a good job of tying it back to Katie and Micah, Paranormal Activity 2 seems to lack the surprise factor that made the first one a cult classic.
The story shifts to a couple of months before Katie's possessed killing of Micah, and focuses on Katie's sister and her family. As weird things begin to happen in their house, they start to wonder if it is because the demon is after their first born son Tucker. As the creepy stuff begins to happen, and the mom even gets possesed, the father starts to take drastic measures to save his family and more importantly, his son.
For me, the pacing and structure of the first one is lost, as the activities don't build up in momentum, and although you know they are coming the writers have opted for a hurried-along script, unlike the first one, that, although slow-paced, made the anticipation for what was going to happen even more dreadful. Unfortunately, this one throws you right in, and never really gives you a chance to absorb the characters, the activities, and the predicament the family is in. Whoever edited this movie needs to understand that fear is something you have to build, not just throw at the audience.
Paranormal Activity 2 isn't a bad movie, and still remains better than 80% of the horror movies that come out, but the allure of the first one quickly wears off, and it starts to seem as if we are rehashing the same ideas, and doing so in a rushed and formulaic fashion. If you are looking for a good fright, its worth paying the money for, just don't expect a bunch of new ideas.
Oscar Potential: haha