Directed by: Chris Butler, Sam Fell
Starring: Kodi Smit-McPhee, Tucker Albrizzi, Anna Kendrick, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Casey Affleck, Leslie Mann, Jeff Garlin
Sassi’s Star Rating: 3.5 / 5
OK, now those with kiddies, beware! ParaNorman is a great film, but it is under the genres animation, horror, comedy, family, fantasy and adventure. That’s right, all of those genres! It’s the horror one that worries me for the littlies, you know what it’s like in the big cinema, with that massive surround sound, dolby stereo ‘boom’ that comes out? ParaNorman is a wonderful film with an underlying moral to the story about rejecting bullying, standing up for what is right and celebrating diversity.
As the title suggests, there is an element of fantasy with Norman Babcock (Smit-McPhee) being able to see and communicate with those that have passed on in a small little New England town called Blithe Hollow, Massachusetts. It’s not your fun kind of interaction all the time and that’s where the scary part comes in. He seems to have a fascination with skulls, monsters and scary things, but perhaps because that is a real part of his life.
His friends at school are not so accepting of his ability and they make it known. He’s treated quite badly, bullied and even his own dad gets embarrassed by his talent. His mum explains that it’s not that people don’t believe him, perhaps they just don’t understand him and they might find that a little scary which is a beautiful concept throughout the animation.
Norman does make one important friend though, Neil (Albrizzi), who is an overweight kid that is also bullied. They become allies and really connect when Neil suggests Norman get in touch with Neil’s dog that had passed away. His simplicity in believing him from the outset confirms their friendship and life is looking pretty sweet for the boys.
Blithe Hollow is about to revisit a yearly issue after the death of a previous ‘protector’ of the curse of the witch now puts Norman in charge of looking after the town. Interestingly Norman doesn’t believe his late uncle’s prediction and decides that he cannot help. Pretty soon, the dead come back to haunt the town and Norman and Neil begin to think that perhaps his uncle was right. Can Norman convince the town of his ability to assist in bringing the town to peace? What will happen when he meets the witch? Can he convince her too?
Lots of morals with lots of scares too, so prep the kids and have a great time.
You don’t become a hero by being normal! In cinemas now.
Category: Film & TV