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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Norman and the paranormal
The makers of Coraline (2D Version Only) [DVD] bring us another stop motion horror comedy for family audiences. Although this is an original screenplay, rather than an adaptation.

Set in a small American town called Blithe Hollow, Norman is a high school student, and of those who doesn't quite fit in. Not least because he can see and talk to the dead. The bane...
Published on 9 Feb. 2013 by Paul Tapner

versus
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Spookily funny stop-motion
Norman is not normal - he can see dead people. And he talks to them as well. He sets out on a quest to save his home town of Blithe Hollow from a centuries-old curse, and if he fails the town will be invaded by Zombies. Together with unexpected new companions, Norman struggles to save his town, only to discover the horrific truth of the curse.

Made by the same...
Published 10 months ago by OEJ


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Norman and the paranormal, 9 Feb. 2013
By 
Paul Tapner (poole dorset england) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: ParaNorman [DVD] [2012] (DVD)
The makers of Coraline (2D Version Only) [DVD] bring us another stop motion horror comedy for family audiences. Although this is an original screenplay, rather than an adaptation.

Set in a small American town called Blithe Hollow, Norman is a high school student, and of those who doesn't quite fit in. Not least because he can see and talk to the dead. The bane of his family because of this, Norman soon finds he has bigger problems. He has his abilities for a reason. The town faces supernatural danger thanks to a dark secret from it's past. Norman is the only one who can save the day. Can he face up to his responsibilities and be a hero?

Many movies of this type all have the same message: just be yourself. And the main character has to go through a lot on the way to learn that. But Paranorman never lectures it's audience or goes too over the top with that, so it works fine. The stop motion is of extremely high quality. There's an incredible attention to detail, from the looks of all the characters to what happens in the background. And every supporting character in the movie is pretty unique and very well characterised. The burgeoning friendship between Norman and one other character is very nicely done.

There are enough twists and plot developments to keep it moving along at a good pace. Some fun set pieces help with this also. It isn't quite as strong a script as Coraline's, but that's only a minor complaint.

This is a pg certificate because, as the dvd box puts it 'contains mild comic horror and violence, frightening sequences and innuendo', so it may not necessarily be suitable for the very young. Possibly not least for the couple of bits of mild innuendo as well. But that's all a matter of parental responsibility.

Do keep watching to the very end of the credits for an extra little stop motion scene. Which has nothing to do with the story, but is very nicely done. Do watch the beginning of the end credits also, for some excellent artwork.

The dvd begins with quite a few trailers, but you can skip through these via the next button on the dvd remote.

It has the following language and subtitle options:

Languages: English, Arabic, Icelandic, Hindi.

Subtitles: English, Arabic, Icelandic, Hindi.

It contains a flyer which has a website address and a code you can input on that to allow you to download a digital copy of the movie onto digital devices.

There are no extras. And a slightly irksome main menu which uses icons rather than text.

But all in all this is a fun little movie, and well worth a look.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Pleasant Surprise., 19 April 2013
I had pretty high expectations going into ParaNorman, the new stop-motion animated film from the makers of Coraline. I thought the movie looked very good from the trailers and it looked like that this would be a very good one. And, I was totally right. I actually thought ParaNorman was more than just good; it was excellent, funny, and wickedly entertaining. This film is filled with humor and action that references many classic horror movies, and as a result, almost seems ready made for a cult-following.

Norman is a strange kid. He can see ghosts, and as a result he is made fun of by his classmates, disowned by his teenage sister and misunderstood by his parents. However he makes friends with Neil, who gets made of equally because he is fat. The town is celebrating it's 300th anniversary; however, the town has a dark past where an evil witch killed the men that put her to death. Norman's eccentric uncle tells the child that he must put the witch's ghost back to sleep or all hell will break loose. Of course Norman can't do it in time, and of course all hell breaks loose. The seven men that the witch killed come back from the dead in Zombie form, and Norman, along Neil, their older siblings, and the school bully, run through town trying to stop it all before anyone gets hurt. Despite what I just described the film was very lighthearted and very amusing, younger kids will enjoy this as well as adults.

The stop-motion animation in this was simply wonderful to look at. The setting, the characters, and the look of the film were literally spot-on. The characters were really likable, funny, caring and very believable. The story was well-written, really well-paced, funny, thrilling, exciting, at times interesting, and at times emotional. This movie had great themes such as family relationships, life and death, and bravery. Not only ParaNorman had great voice acting, it also had an extremely talented voice cast. Kodi Smit-McPhee, Jeff Garlin, Leslie Mann, Anna Kendrick, Casey Affleck, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, and John Goodman, along with many others were great. So overall I would have to say that Paranorman was the best animated flick of 2012.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Spookily funny stop-motion, 23 April 2014
By 
OEJ - See all my reviews
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Norman is not normal - he can see dead people. And he talks to them as well. He sets out on a quest to save his home town of Blithe Hollow from a centuries-old curse, and if he fails the town will be invaded by Zombies. Together with unexpected new companions, Norman struggles to save his town, only to discover the horrific truth of the curse.

Made by the same creators of CORALINE, this doesn't break any new ground and can't quite match it for fear-factor but it offers more in the way of humour. My daughters found it funny but rather formulaic and a bit of a mish-mash of ideas and concepts seen in other films such as Corpse Bride, A Nightmare Before Christmas and in particular Monster House (their favourite of this quartet). It is of course brilliant animation but since we are spoiled with such high standards with almost every animated film these days, it has to be said that it doesn't stand long in the memory. It's good but it's not exactly unforgettable; watchable for sure but not a Blu-ray film that has been watched repeatedly since we bought it. In fact we've had it a month and it has only been watched the once - for me a reliable indicator of just how this film rates against its peers. Seems harsh to give it only 3 stars for being merely 'okay' but the fact is : my daughters haven't shown any interest in repeat viewings as has usually been the case with other animated films I have bought for them.

To its credit though, you do get the full works - not just a Blu-ray disc but a separate DVD as well, and not one but two digital formats as well including an UltraViolet copy. UV allows you to add the film to a cloud-based digital collection; a unique authentication code is included to enable the title to be added, and once that has been done you can then download the file onto your computer or portable media player or stream the content directly to enabled devices.
The authentication code has an expiry date rendering the copy invalid if unused before this time.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fun and technically terrific, but lacks the soul of some similar films, 22 Nov. 2014
By 
K. Gordon - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
Wildly creative and technically terrific, there is much to admire in this animated play on traditional zombie films. But unlike “Coraline” – made by some of the same people – or the other Tim Burton/Henry Selick macabre animated works, there’s a certain lack of soul and emotion here that keeps it from climbing to the heights of those films.

There’s also an odd unevenness of tone. While it has a few really inspired visual and verbal gags, it switches a bit awkwardly back and forth between being almost over-earnest, and a kind of hip, ironic distanced humor. And much of the plot feels familiar and/or predictable.

Part of the struggle for me as an adult is that this is really made for ‘tweens. Too scary for little kids, it also limits the film a bit on the older side. It can’t work as easily for adults as some ‘kids films’ (ala Pixar, etc), where 8 years olds can enjoy it while 30 or 40 year olds can get it on a whole different level. I bet 11 year olds would flat out love this, but unlike the films mentioned earlier, I felt a bit left out of the fun. Still, it has it’s moments, both of humor and heart, and I’m glad I saw it. I just don’t know that I’d ever go back for seconds.
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27 of 33 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Abnormally entertaining, 23 Oct. 2012
ParaNorman shares much in common with studio Laika's previous work, Coraline, which was more tonally consistent (i.e. grim) but a batsqueak less fun. Both films centre on a child outsider (here voiced by Kodi Smit-McPhee) who sees the world differently, practically imprisoned by their subjective view of the world; both films are a celebration of uniqueness; and both films are as imaginative, thrilling and mature as kids' animation gets outside Pixar Studios.

There's homage aplenty, from Evil Dead 2's disembodied hand, to Jason's hockey mask, to John Carpenter's Halloween theme (as Norman SMS tone). These are tropes so embedded in modern culture that while their specific origin may be shrouded from young children's understanding, they won't fly far over their heads.

Oddly, the most extended reference, deliberate or not, seems to be with Darren Aronofsky's The Fountain. The climactic encounter is an illusory, existential face-off, at once massively operatic and then ethereally tender. Perhaps this ending feels like a narrative shift too far, given the broad slapstick that precedes it - but it's the sign of healthy ambition that a film for a younger demographic should be as willing to provoke as it is simply to please.

The overarching message appears familiar - Live and Let Live - but there are deeper, more intricate themes under the skin of ParaNorman: forgiveness, tolerance, and the difference between justice and revenge. The similar Frankenweenie might also explore challenging themes, but it's to Chris Butler's and Sam Fell's credit that they've written and directed a film so much wittier, more exciting, and more moving than Tim Burton's mundane monochrome creature feature.

One last thing. The final pay-off for the muscle-headed Mitch (Casey Affleck) is brilliant and refreshing and likely to cause a storm of squeals from certain perennially outraged parents. To which I would respond: Grow up.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great, 17 Nov. 2013
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This review is from: ParaNorman [DVD] [2012] (DVD)
bought it for the grandson and we watched it on hallowean,we both enjoyed it very much, i think he was a bit afraid
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars ZOMBIES ARE PEOPLE TOO., 17 May 2013
By 
The Movie Guy "Movies from A to Z" (United States) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: ParaNorman [DVD] [2012] (DVD)
Norman sees and talks to dead people. He is tasked to stop the curse of the town's witch trail from centuries ago. In his school, kids who talk to dead people get bullied. The characters are stereotypical.

The beginning of the movie has a spoof of "B" zombie films that was very clever, down to the boom mike making it into the picture. I enjoyed this movie more than the famous Tim Burton productions. While there is nothing wrong in this film per se, there are some things parents might want to know. In one sentence, belief in life after death is equated to belief in astrology. Also the hot guy liked by teen Courtney mentions his boyfriend, shades of "Call Me Maybe."

The people who killed the young witch were wrong, they were considered simply afraid. There are no religious elements associated with the witch trial.

If I was gong to improve this film, I would of had Betty White play grandma and written her character appropriately. Comedian Jeff Garlin as the dad did a great voice.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Norm of the dead, 7 Feb. 2013
By 
Mr. R. W. Graham (Lincoln, U.K.) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: ParaNorman [DVD] [2012] (DVD)
While not for very young children, Paranorman is a good fun animated horror comedy for kids about a little boy called Norman who can talk to the dead. There is also a curse on Norman's town made by a witch centuries earlier that leads to Zombies rising from the grave and attacking the town and Norman is the only one that can stop the curse. Animation is pretty good with some neat references to classic horror films for any grown up horror fans watching with a good voice cast this is a different, fresh and original animated film that gets by on sheer charm alone.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great films & HD digital copy included, 30 Jan. 2013
By 
Truman (Manchester) - See all my reviews
A great film, and to cap it all off, the iTunes digital copy downloads in HD! Here's hoping this will become the standard from now on.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars BRILLIANT MOVIE FOR TEENAGERS, 3 Oct. 2012
I saw Paranorman in ths cinema. It was brilliant. I'm 29 and love scary movies. But not a movie for kids. The movie has intense scenes and mild horror. For the full movie I would give it 10 out of 10. Top movie. 10/10
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Paranorman [DVD]
Paranorman [DVD] by Sam Fell (DVD - 2014)
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