Generally favorable reviews - based on 33 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 219 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: In ParaNorman, a small town comes under siege by zombies. Who can it call? Only misunderstood local boy Norman, who is able to speak with the dead. In addition to the zombies, he’ll have to take on ghosts, witches and, worst, of all, grown-ups, to save his town from a centuries-old curse. But this young ghoul whisperer may find his paranormal activities pushed to their otherworldly limits. (Focus Features) Expand
  • Director: Chris Butler
  • Genre(s): Adventure, Fantasy, Horror, Comedy, Animation, Family
  • Rating: PG
  • Runtime: 92 min
  • More Details and Credits »
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 26 out of 33
  2. Negative: 0 out of 33
  1. Reviewed by: Lawrence Toppman
    Aug 16, 2012
    It's freakishly funny, suddenly tender, gleefully macabre, genuinely scary, and full of a moral – fear turns weak people into bullies – which is dosed out so gently that it never tastes like medicine.
  2. Reviewed by: Lou Lumenick
    Aug 17, 2012
    ParaNorman is probably the year's most visually dazzling movie so far, and the stunning climax centering on an 11-year-old witch (Jodelle Ferland) is too good to spoil.
  3. Reviewed by: Betsy Sharkey
    Aug 16, 2012
    It may be the most fun you'll have with ghosts and zombies all year.
  4. Reviewed by: Peter Travers
    Aug 16, 2012
    My advice? Just go with ParaNorman. There's magic in it.
  5. Reviewed by: Bilge Ebiri
    Aug 18, 2012
    In the end, perhaps the most touching quality of this film is its low-key, but sensitively rendered portrait of a young, awkward child who hasn't quite managed to figure his way out in the world yet.
  6. Reviewed by: Rene Rodriguez
    Aug 16, 2012
    None of this is all that engaging. But the art design of the movie makes up for the slack story.
  7. 40
    ParaNorman is easily one of the most charming, imaginative and quirky comedies to come out of Laika Entertainment (Coraline), but for all its cleverness and urbane wit, it's in no way appropriate for kids.

See all 33 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 45 out of 67
  2. Negative: 14 out of 67
  1. Aug 20, 2012
    Simply an amazing movie. It's like a Tim Burton movie, but it isn't. The art style is just fantastic and innocent, and the message of the movie is even better! This is probably my favorite film now, no joke. ParaNorman focuses a lot on tolerance and the movie never bored me: the visual effects were so great and so was the voice acting! It was definitely entertaining start to finish -- although it did start off weird, it quickly got to the point and surprised me!! I loved the characters and just the movie itself! DEFINITELY a must see, whatever age!!!

    Seriously people? You're giving an amazing movie a ZERO because of a gay reference? Calm down, and stop being immature. It's not that big of a deal.
  2. Zal
    Dec 14, 2012
    When I first saw the trailer, I wasn't sure if I would like this film and when I saw it, I didn't like it. I LOVED it. I love stopmotion, but that's not why I love this film (well, it's one of the reasons). All the characters are very likable. Even characters like the sister, the best friend's brother, and the school bully were lots of fun. They started out as stereotypical jerks but there's a little more to them then that.

    I also like how there's actually atmosphere in this movie. A lot of kids movies are afraid of being too scary because it's "dark," but ParaNorman, for the most part, is not scary. The scene that freaked me out was the climax (same thing with Coraline, but I think Coraline's climax was scary as %$@*). I won't say what happens but even if you don't think it's scary, it's still a great scene, especially if you love animation since it combines stopmotion, computer, and hand-drawn animation.

    While it's not scary, there are a lot of elements of horror. If you like watching old grindhouse movies, you might find this interesting since the writers have incorporated their love of the genre into this film.

    I realize this movie won't be everyone's cup of tea and that's okay. I went with a friend who thought it was going to be a cute, Tim Burton-y type of movie and she ended up not liking it. I love Tim Burton's stopmotion films, but I don't know how his fans will feel about this movie. ParaNorman is more for Coraline fans. Since I am a Coraline fan, I recommend this. But I also recommend it because it was creative, funny, and touching.
  3. Jan 13, 2013
    ParaNorman is the best animated film of the year that I have seen. It gives out good messages, it is funny, sweet, and emotionally depth. I never was once bored with it. I give this film 90%. Expand
  4. Dec 9, 2012
    A brilliant film. It really nails the horror scenes well. They're genuinely scary and imaginative. I wouldn't let a young kid watch this lol. It has some classic, retro type music play when the zombies appear too, giving it a kind of grindhouse feel. The animation is really unique and quirky, the dialogue is funny too. A family film on a didn't level, an old school level. Expand
  5. BKM
    Feb 2, 2013
    ParaNorman never quite finds the right balance between goofy comedy, creepfest and parable, but it's still a visual treat with a good heart and one of the more genuinely moving finales of any film released in 2012. That alone puts it a cut above the increasingly homogenized crop of family friendly animated fare being churned out at an alarming rate. Expand
  6. Sep 19, 2012
    Wow has this movie caused a lot of drama from critics. Personally i am torn on this movie. I found it to be a movie with an average plot, great art design and a very good message. Being 19, the controversial gay statement really did surprise me and give me a good laugh at the end of the movie, but seeing as this is a PG, i can see the issue parents have with it. Overall, its a cute movie with a little bit of adult humor to spice it up a bit, don't take your kids to this movie if you feel they aren't mature enough to handle a bit of crude humor, but do give this movie a shot. Expand
  7. Nov 30, 2012
    The number one reason why this movie is bad is lack of a good story movie, it doesn't exist. The scary atmosphere isnt there either. The movie is very boring at times. Animations are very well done, but thats not enough Expand

See all 67 User Reviews


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