Review: ‘ParaNorman’

Paranorman reviewNorman (Kodi Smit-McPhee) is a normal, young boy. He loves to sit on the couch and watch TV with his Grandmother (Elaine Stritch), chat with people as he walks down the street in his small town and play with all of the dogs and cats as he passes them by.

There’s only one problem. They’re all dead.

Ok, so he might not be your typical young boy.

But that’s ok, because when the town suddenly becomes overrun with ghosts, ghouls and zombies, Norman is the only one who can help. But from his disbelieving family and the school bullies, will Norman – ParaNorman – have enough confidence in himself to get rid of the horrors?

The film, from the stop-motion animation studio that gave us 2009’s Coraline, is entertaining and the visuals are outstanding. It’s got humor for young kids – not too young though, there is some creepy stuff going on in the film – and older and a lot of don’t-blink-or-you’ll miss-it moments that someone my age got a big kick out of. The film also has a solid (but not preachy) attitude about bullying and what it’s like to be different.

Kodi Smit-McPhee is wonderful as Norman and as his exasperated sister, Anna Kendrick can do an animated ‘sigh’ better than anyone.

The one problem I had with the film, and this is with all animated films nowadays, were some of the voices: The trend to use name actors in roles where a voice-over actor would be a million times better. In films and TV, I really like Leslie Mann and Jeff Garlin (they play Norman’s mother and father) and Casey Affleck but their voices don’t do anything for animation. They’re flat and just took me out of the film most of the time. With Garlin, he didn’t do anything with his voice. He wasn’t flat like the others, but again, it took me out because his voice is so recognizable to me. Kendrick and Smit-McPhee were hands down great but, I do think they are the exception rather than the norm.

That being said, it will in no way diminish the enjoyment you’ll get from this film.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Latest Videos

http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/bill-hader.jpg
Bill Hader: “I kind of fell into acting” (video)
Bill Hader, starring in the soon to be released The Skeleton Twins, talks about the film and how he fell into acting and then got “crazy lucky” in this quick video from USA Today. Share on Tumblr
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/director-john-carney-narrates-a.jpg
Director John Carney Narrates a Scene from ‘Begin Again’ Starring Kiera Knightley and Mark Ruffalo
Director John Carney (Once) narrates a scene from his new film, Begin Again. Starring Keira Knightley and Mark Ruffalo, the scene shows the first time the two characters meet. I haven’t seen it yet but I’ve heard it’s great.
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/holler-if-you-hear-me-gma.jpg
Watch the Cast of Broadway’s ‘Holler If You Hear Me’ Perform ‘California Love’ on GMA
The cast of Broadway’s newest musical, Holler If You Hear Me with music from Tupac Shakur, performed on Good Morning America this morning. Singing ‘California Love’, the cast (including the teriffic Christopher Jackson – read our interview here), show why they’re the most energetic and inspiring group of actors on Broadway. Holler If Ya Hear [...]
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/behind-the-scenes-of-dawn-of-the.jpg
Behind the Scenes of ‘Dawn of the Planet of the Apes’ with Performance Capture Actor Terry Notary
Actor Terry Notary is 1 of 5 actors playing the apes in the new Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. “When you see armies of apes,” he says, that’s “five of us.” Check out the video where you can watch his performance capture work.
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/melissa-mccarthy-daily-show.jpg
Melissa McCarthy and John Stewart Talk About Terrible Commercial Auditions on ‘The Daily Show’
Melissa McCarthy stopped by The Daily Show last week to plug about her new movie, Tammy. She talked about how she loved working with her husband, Ben Falcone (director of Tammy) and then segued into talking about some horrible working situations. The always hilarious McCarthy then started to tell host John Stewart about a particular [...]