Tuesday, January 15, 2013

ParaNorman (2012) review


I was really looking forward to seeing this one this past year, and I have to say that I got everything I expected and a little more.

PLOT:Norman (Kodi Smit-McPhee) isn't like the other kids; he can talk to ghosts. All the other kids pick on him at school and even his family ignores him and labels him as crazy. However, he is one day visited by his uncle (John Goodman) who tells him that he is now in charge of keeping the witch's curse under control and keeping her from coming back to haunt the town. Norman tries, but fails to keep the witch under control, which in turn raises the dead and trashes the town! Now it's up to Norman, his sister (Anna Kendrick), his best friend, Neil (Tucker Abrizzi), Neil's brother, Mitch (Casey Affleck), and Norman's bully, Alvin (Christopher Mintz-Plasse) to save the town and stop the witch's curse. It's a really good plot executed greatly.

VOICES:The voice acting in here was pretty good. Kodi Smit-McPhee actually played a pretty good part as the young Norman. I say that in this tone because the child actors usually aren't that good. The other shiners would be John Goodman as Mr. Prenderghast, Jeff Garlin as Perry (Norman's dad), Casey Affleck as Mitch, Anna Kendrick as Courtney, Elaine Stritch as Grandma, and Tempestt Bledsoe as the Sheriff. However, some of these performances weren't all that great, or they couldn't live in a live action movie as they did in here.

SCORE:The score was pretty good. It wasn't anything spectacular, but it really went along with the mood of the movie with a nice finishing song from The White Stripes.

ANIMATION:The animation had to be the best part of the movie along with the plot. The animation is from the creators of the great "Coraline", so you can imagine it's going to be really good. The animation in here is very detailed, both in motions and design. I loved how they made everything movie with ease in beautiful claymation, as well as semi-realistic characters.

OTHER CONTENT:This movie was a real treat for not only the horror fan but also the kid in me. This claymation treat seamelessly blends zombie horrors with a child's innocence and comes out with a product worth being made. It's clever, meaningful, intense, and funny. However, aside from the one-track acting, it also has a sense of a familiar formula, like if you had combined "Chicken Little" with a zombie/premonition movie. It's still a great treat overall anyway.

OVERALL,a great claymation movie with a really good plot, pretty good voice acting, fitting score, beautiful claymation animation and design, cleverness, meaning, intensity, fun, and a well-done combination of innocence and horror, but the acting would probably only work for this movie and the formula seems very familiar.

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