07/30/2013 01:32 pm ET

The Least Believable Found-Footage Horror Films

Artisan Entertainment

The found-footage horror genre has become more ubiquitous over the past decade, even though it dates back to 1980's "Cannibal Holocaust." Some of its movies have met critical acclaim, including "The Blair Witch Project" -- which celebrates its 14th anniversary on July 30 -- as well as the original "Paranormal Activity" and this month's "The Conjuring."

Each of these movies bills itself on a sense of believability, but some are too far-fetched to be truly terrifying. Here are six of the least believable found-footage horror films.

"Europa Report" (2013)

It's like "Gravity" without the budget or the A-list cast. "Europa Report" finds six astronauts traveling to Jupiter's moons on a privately funded mission to detect life on the planet. One crew member dies and the remaining space troopers can't re-establish communication with Earth, yet they find a way to transmit the "found" footage back home before the rest of them meet their doom.

"The Bay" (2012)

"The Bay" centers on a Maryland town where the water suddenly contains a deadly toxin. The plague spreads thanks to a parasite that turns those who come in contact with it into mutants. The film received mildly positive reviews but plays out as a "faux eco-documentary," as Roger Ebert called it, more than a horror film.

"Hollow" (2011)

An evil tree is the thing of lore in "Hollow," a low-key supernatural film that took more than a year and a half to make its way from Montreal's Fantasia Festival to the U.K. and U.S. Four friends explore the town's spooky legend, which revolves around a large shrub that prompts young couples to commit suicide.

"Apollo 18" (2011)

Largely eviscerated by critics, "Apollo 18" purports that the canceled 1974 mission of the same name actually did happen, with the crew never returning. Here we see the "lost footage" from the moon expedition, and it "reconfirms that most entries in the 'found-footage' horror subgenre should remain lost," according to The Village Voice.

"Monster" (2008)

Two American journalists documenting earthquakes in Tokyo capture what turns out to be a gigantic octopus that's remained dormant for centuries and is now unearthed. "Monster" was a direct-to-video Japanese flick that intended to capitalize on "Cloverfield," which was released three days later and brings us to...

"Cloverfield" (2008)

While the production values on "Cloverfield" are of much higher quality than most found-footage films, no one's buying this New York City-rampaging monster. Plus, why does the poor Statue of Liberty always have to play the part of the victim?



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