If the summer heat has you longing for the autumn season, specifically the atmospheric trappings of supernatural October, then a quick escape to the world of ParaNorman
should tide you over until the leaves turn (or, in this reviewer’s case, until the palm tress are no longer self-combusting). Full of traditional ghouls, and contemporary understanding, ParaNorman
is a solidly packed animated adventure that calls to mind teen movies past. It’s got style, some neat bells and whistles, and a show of beautiful craftsmanship that nearly makes up for the pacing pitfalls.
Norman’s a likeable young boy, withdrawn and imaginative, sullen and stubborn as befits both age and situation. He’s got an inherited gift he doesn’t want; he can see, and freely communicate, with the dead. His discussions with unseen spirits make him the laughing stock of the town, but his powers come in handy when a long-dead witch’s curse unleashes the undead, and a fierce neon-lit hurricane, on blasé Blithe Hollow.