Keep It Reel Reviews

Reel People. Reel Reviews.

ParaNorman (2012)


Rated: PG

1 hr 33 mins

Staff Writer: Nathaniel Brayton


This is my favorite animated film of the year, hands down. But lets be very clear, this film is not for very young children. It’s creepy, scary, and at its core, a love letter to the horror genre. The style of ParaNorman does not hold back, and that works quite well. The movie stars a young boy, Norman, who can see ghosts that have unfinished business or have died in horrible, sudden ways. Of course, the town and his family think Norman to be a freak until one day when the town witch comes back to seek her vengeance. 

There are many things to love about ParaNorman. First, it is both an excellent parody and full-blown horror flick. It has a unique way of making you laugh and five minutes later, creeping you out, which is an astonishing feat. The characters start out as very stereotypical, but by then end the audience sees the multiple layers each characters posseses. ParaNorman also does a hilarious job at poking fun of society and their rash judgements and actions. I think what makes those jokes extra funny is that the audience probably has irrational, crazy neighbors similar to the town members. The animation and voice actors are both phenomenal. But the best thing about this movie is its message to all young people, which is don’t be afraid to be yourself, and to think before judging. ParaNorman uses the living dead to challenge our humanity.

In the end, I want ParaNorman to win the Oscar. There are so many emotions that this animated film conveys better than any live action film. It deals with childhood loneliness in such a creative way that many young adolescents can relate to.


out of 10

“There’s nothing wrong with being scared Norman, so long as you don’t let it change who you are.”


11 thoughts on “ParaNorman (2012)

  1. I’ve did a Quick Review of it on my site but I’ve never gave it a full review treatment.

  2. Nice review! I have to say that i preferred 2006’s Monster House, they tread similar lines but Monster House held abit more weight with me…i dunno why. ParaNorman was great though.

  3. I am not a big horror fan so I did not see this till it came out on iTunes and to be totally honest I loved Frankenweenie better. As a fan of movies like Arsenic and Old Lace, Frankenweenie is more up my alley then Norman. I was not impressed, as you say in your review, with the over used tropes for the characters. The voice acting and animation were superb but the story fell flat for me. I would have to agree with the Annie awards on the Wreck-it-Ralph win

    • I rented Frankenweenie tonight because of your comment! I thought Wreck-it-Ralph was awesome as well but not as imaginative as ParaNorman. I wish Wreck-it-Ralph would have done more with the arcade, instead of staying in one game the whole time. They had so much to work with.

      • Enjoy Frankenweenie, my dad and I liked it because of all the science and the connection to the really old b&w horrors of the silents (also we are Dog owners). If there is anything Disney is good at it is making sequels I would not be surprised if they did more with the arcade in a sequel.

  4. Nice review. Unfortunately, ParaNorman was a disappointment for me – I still did enjoy it though.

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