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Friday, August 17, 2012

PARANORMAN: A Movie Review!

Last night, my 8 year old son and I had the chance to pre-screen ParaNorman. Let me start off by saying that this movie is rated PG but I would not take young children. Noah at 8 was possibly a little too young for this movie. There were plenty of scary parts and a few bits of humor that I would consider a little too mature for him. Honestly, if I would have screened the movie before Noah, I would not have let him see this movie.

Don't get me wrong. The movie was entertaining and I liked the anti-bullying message that it carried. But, I would say it is best viewed by audiences 10 and older.

Now, with that said, here's a short synopsis of the movie!

ParaNorman is set in the town of Blithe Hollow, whose locals profit from mining the town’s history as the site, 300 years ago, of a famous witch hunt. 11-year-old Norman Babcock (voiced by Kodi Smit-McPhee of Let Me In and The Road) spends much of his days appreciating the finer points of scary movies and studying ghost lore. In fact, Norman is gifted with the ability to see and speak with the dead, such as his beloved grandmother (Elaine Stritch). Most days, he prefers their company to that of his flustered father (Jeff Garlin), spacey mother (Leslie Mann), and deeply superficial older sister Courtney (Anna Kendrick). At middle school, Norman dodges bullying Alvin (Christopher Mintz-Plasse), confides in the impressionable Neil (Tucker Albrizzi), and tries to tune out his blowhard teacher Mrs. Henscher (Alex Borstein).

Norman is unexpectedly contacted by his odd uncle Prenderghast (John Goodman), who floors him with the revelation that a centuries-old witch’s curse is real and is about to come true, and that only Norman will be able to stop it from going into overdrive and harming the townspeople. Once a septet of zombies – led by The Judge (Bernard Hill) – suddenly rises from their graves, Norman finds himself caught in a wild race against time alongside Courtney, Alvin, Neil, and Neil’s musclebound older brother Mitch (Casey Affleck) as Sheriff Hooper (Tempestt Bledsoe) chases them all. Worse, the town is up in arms and taking up arms. Norman bravely summons up all that makes a hero – courage and compassion – as he finds his paranormal activities pushed to their otherworldly limits.

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