Last Update: Wednesday, July 16, 2014

REVIEW- 'ParaNorman' Doomed by Script Demons PDF Print E-mail
Written by Jake Coyle AP Entertainment Writer   
Thursday, 23 August 2012 04:11


This film image released by Focus Features shows the character Norman, voiced by Kodi Smit-McPhee, in the 3D stop-motion film, "ParaNorman."

The stop-motion animated "ParaNorman'' unfolds tragically: So much drawing for such an unworthy script.

The labor necessary to create a film like "ParaNorman'' is colossal. Tens of thousands of facial expressions were drawn. 3- D printers (a new advancement in stop motion pioneered here) ran through 3.8 metric tons of printer powder. One scene alone took a year to shoot.

So it's tempting to applaud the 3-D "ParaNorman'' politely, sympathetically simply because of the admirable work. No one wants to tell 60 puppet makers that their months of toil were ill spent. But though "ParaNorman'' is impressively crafted, the frequently wondrous and whimsical visuals far surpass the disappointingly slipshod story of an 11- year-old boy named Norman (voiced by Kodi Smit-McPhee) who can see and speak to the dead.

While stop-motion animation has largely gone out of favor with the rise of computer animation, the Portland-based studio LAIKA has carried the flame. The studio, which is owned by Nike founder Phil Knight and run by his son, Travis Knight (a producer on "ParaNorman''), previously made 2009's "Coraline.'' "ParaNorman'' bears some of the same fantasy-horror spirit of "Coraline,'' which was based on Neil Gaiman's novella. It also has some of the elements of the British studio Aardman Animations ("Wallace and Gromit''); "ParaNorman'' is directed by Sam Fell (who co-directed Aardman's "Flushed Away'') and Chris Butler, who also wrote it.

With a thick forest of rigidly spiked brown hair, Norman appears as if in perpetual fright. But he greets the paranormal with casual familiarity, talking to his grandmother (Elaine Stritch) while they watch TV and greeting invisible passersby while he walks down a seemingly empty street.

He's an avid horror film watcher with zombie posters in his bedroom and a cell phone ringtone of the "Friday the 13th'' theme. His parents (Jeff Garlin, Leslie Mann) and older sister (Anna Kendrick) have little patience for Norman's eccentricities and the kids in school call him "Abnorman'' and worse.

Norman is contacted by his uncle Prenderghast (John Goodman) who shares Norman's gift. He tells him that the myth of their town, Blithe Hollow _ that it was cursed by a witch 300 years ago _ is true, and that it's now Norman's duty to keep her at bay with a ritual. Prederghast, who promptly croaks, also appears to Norman from the bowels of a school toilet. It's the scene that took a year to shoot, and it's when "ParaNorman'' is at its best: brilliantly textured, comical and bizarre.

After Norman fails in the ritual, he and an improvised gang _ his round redhead friend Neil (Tucker Albrizzi), Neil's hunky and dimwitted older brother (Casey Affleck), a bully who resembles the one that preyed on Calvin from Calvin and Hobbes (Alex Borstein), and Norman's sister _ flee from a septet of zombies, with much shrieking and plan making.

The running around town takes up what feels like two thirds of the film, robbing "ParaNorman'' of pace and setting it on a tiresome and frantic trajectory before enough character development has taken place. Some awkward rhythm and poor sound design (outside of the score by Jon Brion) also prevent "ParaNorman'' from the smoothness of a major studio animated film.

The setup is promising and film has its charms _ Norman responds to a demand to "swear!'' with hesitance: "Like, the Fword?'' _ but it never quite finds its tone, and sometimes seems lucky to have avoided a PG-13 rating. "ParaNorman,'' blessed with otherworldly animation, can't escape the demons of story.

"ParaNorman,'' a Focus Features release, is rated PG for scary action and images, thematic elements, some rude humor and language. Running time: 92 minutes. Two stars out of four.

Last Updated on Thursday, 23 August 2012 04:15

Team members care for thousands of the region's sickest children with heart conditions, including fetuses, newborns, infants, children, adolescents, and adult, long-term patients with pediatric cardiovascular conditions. At Children's families experience coordinated, next-generation care, delivered by a compassionate, multidisciplinary team of leaders in the pediatric cardiology field. One of the largest pediatric cardiovascular programs in the region. Studies have shown that high volumes are associated with high quality and better outcomes, because experience is a major factor in quality of care. Wort was traditionally prescribed in parts of Europe for depression (in addition to use as a general-purpose tea), and Chinese medicine developed elaborate lists of herbs and preparations. With the scientific revolution in Europe and the United States, the use of traditional herbal remedies fell out of favor with the mainstream medical establishment, although a few people continued to use and maintain knowledge of traditional European herblore. In the early 20th century, scientists began reassessing this rejection of traditional herbs in medicine. Vorzüge eines intakten und lebendigen Gemeinschaftslebens bewahren. Dafür sorgen nicht zuletzt gut 120 lokale Vereine. Als wichtiger Faktor im Kulturleben haben sich die zahlreichen Museen und einige Kunstgalerien erwiesen. Descriptive and quantitative transcriptome analyses are important for interpreting the functional elements of the genome and revealing the molecular constituents of cells and tissues. It is known that sperm function can be affected by ASG proteins, including the processes of capacitation and the acrosome reaction, as well as canadian pharmacy accutane sperm motility, DNA integrity and interaction with the oocyte. BSPs (bovine seminal plasma protein, unigene 64,588 and unigene 69,768), fertilin (unigene 17,270 and unigene 27,136), ACE (Angiotensin converting enzyme, unigene 7,164 and unigene 21,069), GPX5 (glutathione peroxidase, epididymal secretory glutathione peroxidase, unigene15860), Spermadhesin-1 (Acidic seminal fluid protein, aSFP). The reproduction-related transcripts identified in the ASG and testis transcritptomes in E. This interaction of PDC-109 with the sperm cell membrane results in an efflux of cholesterol and choline phospholipids, that appears to be important for capacitation. The main changes in spermatozoa that occur during epididymal maturation are the ability to move, recognize and bind to the ZP, and to fuse with the plasma membrane of the oocyte.. Oct 2004, Adelaide, Australia. Ziaian T, Augostinos, M. Relationship Between Acculturation and Mental Well-being Among Young Persian Women Living in Australia. Paper presented at the Educational Research conference, 18th November 2004, Adelaide, Australia. Ziaian T, Stress Management: an introduction of holistic coping strategies. A Four day Course for the higher degree students. Targeted molecular therapy for advanced epithelial ovarian cancer. Minimally invasive surgery for gynecological cancer. Pharmaceutical Sciences from Shizuoka College of Pharmacy (1976, Japan). He has completed his B. Prophylactic removal of nevi without clinically worrisome characteristics is not recommended. The reasons for this are practical: many individuals in these families have a large number of nevi, and complete removal of them all is not feasible, since new atypical nevi continue to develop. In addition, individuals with increased susceptibility to melanoma may have cancer arise de novo, without a precursor lesion such as a nevus. The disadvantages of screening include the limitations of available noninvasive testing methods and the risks associated with invasive screening procedures. ERCP is the gold standard for identifying early cancers and precancerous lesions in the pancreas..