Year of Release: 2012
Director: Chris Butler, Sam Fell
Stars: Kodi Smit-McPhee, Tucker Albrizzi, Anna Kendrick, Casey Affleck, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Leslie Mann, Jeff Garlin, Elaine Stritch, Bernard Hill, Jodelle Ferland, Tempestt Bledsoe
Genre: Animation, Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy
Score out of ten (whole numbers only): 7
"ParaNorman" is the joint effort from Chris Butler and Sam Fell, both with previous experience in animation, but who tackle with this feature, the challenge that is creating a stop-motion animated film. The film is simultaneously an homage to the features of Stuart Gordon (who directed the cult horror film "Re-Animator"), but also a heartfelt trip to the memories of the Hammer films (which featured Christopher Lee for instance). The simultaneous existence of the reverence for the familiar horror/suspense structure and the comedy that is distilled throughout the film, make this a compelling animated feature. Though there is the conventional undertone of the young hero coming to terms with his own difference and being accepted by his family, the overall tone of the film is still unique and original. The design of the characters should also be highlighted, and the special effects give an extra dimension to the overall film. A small gem worth watching.