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Oh, PARANORMAN… you had so much potential.

There’s plenty to like about this quirky horror-driven piece of beautiful animation put together by LAIKA under the direction of Chris Butler and Sam Fell. If there’s a bone in your body that loves old-school horror flicks and appreciates the type of monster movies that used to populate late night cable TV over the weekend or that used to make up those creature double-features even before that, then you’ll get a lot of the homage to those films PARANORMAN pays. From its genius cheap zombie B-movie schlock opening to even the carefully designed opening credits (right down to the font), it’s clear what PARANORMAN is trying to do. I only wish it would have stuck to that the whole way through. What PARANORMAN falls victim to is trying to be different just for different’s sake. I can’t fault Butler (who also penned the screenplay) and Fell for aiming to craft something off the wall and original. Taking those chances means accepting the risk that what you’re doing won’t work. PARANORMAN does work for about the first half. Sadly, it’s when it strays from formula as it heads towards its conclusion that it loses its way a bit.

Norman (Kodi Smit-McPhee) is at the heart of the flick, a slightly odd boy with an affinity for zombie movies and the gift of being able to communicate with the undead. Whether he’s sitting around the house watching movies with his dead grandmother or saying hello to the dozens of ghosts and spirits he crosses paths with on his way to school every day, Norman has a special ability that the town of Blithe Hollow is going to need to save it from destruction fairly soon.

A long-contained Witch’s Curse is about to be unleashed on the town, and only Norman can stop it. The fate of everyone depends on him, and, unless he can keep the Witch in her grave, the dead will rise from their graves. Alongside his pudgy sidekick of sorts Neil (Tyler Albrizzi) and a band of assorted family, friends and enemies that gives PARANORMAN a Scooby-Doo meets THE MONSTER SQUAD vibe, Norman takes on the monumental task… and to this point, everything is going swimmingly. It’s only when PARANORMAN tries to flip the conventions of the genre on their ear that PARANORMAN falls into the rut of having its main character explain everything in preachy monologues, making it easier for the audience to wrap their heads around these types of changes to what felt like a familiar story. Butler and Fell really had something going for them, putting their own spin on a story we’ve seen before, adding plenty of freshness to this horror-comedy hybrid. But the third act just seems to come undone, and that stopped my ultimate enjoyment of PARANORMAN. I still like and respect a lot of what it does, but, as a whole, I just think the movie wraps as okay.

Jon Brion’s 80s-inspired score really helps Butler and Fell convey the tone they’re going for, and the LAIKA animation is the right amount of rough around the edges for a movie drawn from a long legacy of low-budget horror films. Christopher Mintz-Plasse voicing against his usual character type as Alvin the local bully is an interesting choice that certainly works in the film’s favor, and the rest of the film’s cast from Anna Kendrick to Casey Affleck to Jeff Garlin disappear into their roles, so the actors don’t overpower the characters. I just wish PARANORMAN stuck to the script a bit more, as familiarity isn’t always a bad thing. It’s what you do with it that counts. 


-Billy Donnelly

"The Infamous Billy The Kidd"

Follow me on Twitter.

Readers Talkback
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  • Aug. 17, 2012, 3:20 p.m. CST

    For the love of god please stop reviewing movies.

    by Severens_spur

    Your opinion sucks.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 3:23 p.m. CST


    by Astronut

    I admire the old, gay claymation-style approach versus pure CGI. I think all the CG stuff starts to look similar after a while... just not real enough. Anyhoo, I'm seeing this at a drive-in. I probably won't be watching a whole lot of the movie. ha

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 3:25 p.m. CST

    another disappointment for the kid

    by sebas


  • What's the point?

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 3:35 p.m. CST

    Oh, PARANORMAN… you had so much potential.

    by Rakesh Patel

    that line at the top saved me a minute of reading that review.

  • I mean come on now, it's beyond redundant. Why doesn't The Kidd just change his review titles to: The Kidd hates _______ or The Kidd disappointed by _______ Because that's the the entirety of his reviews. Even the movies that he says he enjoyed or liked he picks apart faster than vultures on a decaying carcass. It gets to a point where you're like why are you on site reviewing movies when the majority of the movies you review you hate. At least there's really no point to checking your reviews we already read them previously LOL.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 3:40 p.m. CST

    NewsFlash: The Kidd is a Nolanite!

    by aphextwin

    ...of the (very) extreme kind. Any movie that has NOT Nolan's fingerprints on it is inferior according to his religion. And I quote: "....In Nolan we trust..."

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 3:43 p.m. CST

    The "Kidd"s reviews equal to.....

    by Michael_Jacksons_Ghost

    Ten pounds of shit, in a five pound bag.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 3:49 p.m. CST

    The Kidd vs The Kidd

    by yourebreakingthejacket

    Ohh Kidd, you had such potential. Then you got older and started writing for AICN. The Kidd sounds like a reviewer the morning show on fox ny had on in the 90's. He was some old guy named Stuart Something or other. He hated everything and anything that was widely praised he gave it a Kidd-like Paranorman review. It gets to the point that it is entertaining just to see what they can possibly pick apart.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 3:52 p.m. CST

    Most movies are shit, and as The Kidd reviews a lot of movies...

    by simonred

    ...he's going to be unimpressed with most of them - and rightly so. A critics job is to express their opinion, not jump on the fanboy bandwagon and wave a great big flag for everything that everyone gets excited about in advance. And if you don't like his stuff, then don't read it. I'd take a review by The Kidd over anything by Harry six days a week and twice on Sunday.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 3:55 p.m. CST

    I applaud The Kidd for his honesty

    by Logan_1973

    Harry and co. have been gushing over this film for the past six months.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 3:56 p.m. CST


    by TheMachinist

    Look, I've put up with the negative reviews only because they're mostly right. However, here it just seems like you're holding back praise in order to give it a bad review. Your first paragraph is nothing but "Don't get me wrong, it's fantastic, but...". It's great that you're giving tough reviews, but you need to remember to enjoy a movie every once in a while. Not Harry level fanboy squees, but not every review needs to be bad.

  • I'm fine with him dishing out as many negative reviews as he does, he just doesn't seem to know how to criticize films on their own merits and seems to always go in with a chip on his shoulder. His reviews are typically poorly written, douchey and seem like a device to show how snarky he can be. Hell, even when posting fucking movie posters or trailers, he can't even curb his negativity. Why the fuck did you go into this business, Kidd?

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 4:24 p.m. CST

    Goddamn I miss Massawurm's reviews!

    by Sumatran_Rat_Monkey

    I have yet to read a positive review from this kid. Gads!

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 4:30 p.m. CST

    Enough with the vs. crap

    by Filbakar

    ... old, lame, and not creative. You should be ashamed.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 4:37 p.m. CST

    Another senior high journalism review from the Kidd

    by Andrew

    Is the Kidd actually the nerdy Cobra Kai guy with the high voice who yells "yeah, Johnny! Get him a body bag!!" Because thats who I picture every time I read one of his trying-to-hard reviews

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 5:01 p.m. CST

    have been reading it as Panoramaman this whole time

    by 6000_little_griglets

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 5:42 p.m. CST

    The Kidd is alright

    by ray a

    Stop hatin plus he did give TDKR a good review, but mostof these movies are not worthy of the praise you want him to give.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 5:46 p.m. CST

    I hear what you're saying but...

    by Christian

    as someone above me pointed out: Most movies made today ranges in quality between mediocre to utter shit. Very, VERY rarley do we get a really good movie. So it shouldn't come as a surprise that any reviewer who isn't bought by the movie companies will whine a lot about the movies he sees. Of course, whinig for whinings sake or whining because you think it will make you look funny/cool is boring but I'll take the Kids whining over Nordlings ignorance any day of the week. That guy was hopeless. He started every review with: "I haven't read the book this movie is based on" or "I haven't seen the original this movie is a remake of" or "I haven't seen the TV-series this moie is based on" or... you get the idea.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 6:18 p.m. CST

    Wow, more negativity from Kiddo.

    by Mike

    Make it stop! Will somebody get this guy off this site?

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 6:53 p.m. CST

    What I don't understand

    by unuseddraft

    about The Kidd. Is his reviews are often titled with the Kidd Vs...that already puts in the mind of the reader that Kidd has an adversarial position against the film.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 7:38 p.m. CST

    Leave the Kidd alone!

    by hulkiest

    What is with people ripping on this guy who always comes up with plausible reasons as to why he does or doesn't like something? Most movies aren't that great, you know? Including Oscar Winners. Anyone watched Ben Hur lately? How about Academy Award winner, beat Star Wars, Julia? When's the last time you heard, "Hey, we're having a Shakespeare in Love party!" The movies from 2012, like Avengers and Dark Knight Rises likely won't even be mentioned in 20 years. (Hell, I bet that in 20 years, people won't even remember the LOTR movies, the most unwatchable event movies ever, IMHO. I saw ROTK once and that was enough for me.) Point is, there are some great movies out there, movies that make you want to leap for joy, kiss a girl, etc. etc. The crap that came out this summer ain't it. I trust the Kidd because he isn't among the ranks in army of critical phonies who praises something like Batman and Robin or Transformers and then when its popular to hate them, will act as if he was one of those who gave it a negative review.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 9:17 p.m. CST

    Do you even like movies?

    by james glaus

    What would you do for a Klondike Bar? Well... I'd fuck one.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 9:21 p.m. CST

    My comment got cut

    by james glaus

    Bravo. Real class act. AICN = Comingsoon's retarded inbred cousin

  • ...while others complain about how Harry just seems to love every film ever made in the whole world regardless of how good or bad it is (except INCEPTION). There's just no pleasing people it seems. I genuinely feel for Billy. I've probably seen more than 2,000 films in my lifetime and it is very hard to remain impressed or excited by movies when you've seen all the tricks, all the short-cuts, all the same mistakes made over and over again. Some people question if Billy likes movies, I would imagine he likes movies a lot. What amazes me is that there are people who seem to love movies, but somehow never manage to get cynical about them despite their quality.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 9:41 p.m. CST

    I've learned something reading responces to the Kidds Reviews

    by Todd1700

    Fan boys want to be lied to. Damn, no wonder the studios love your asses. No matter how mediocre or how much a movie sucks they want to be told it's great by some shill for the studio. They just love having a load of false hope packed up their collective asses so they can shit it back out in their seat when reality and truth smack their ass in the face on opening night. Of course by then it's too late and the studio has your money.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 10 p.m. CST

    I saw PARANORMAN today, and I loved it.

    by Bob Loblaw Law Blog

    Sweet, scary, funny and, at times, sad. I really enjoyed it, even more than CORALINE.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 10:26 p.m. CST

    Anna Kendrick

    by Raptor Jesus

    Is adorable. If you could actually see her in this movie, I'd go.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 10:26 p.m. CST

    No fuzzy slippers for you.

    by adeceasedfan

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 10:38 p.m. CST

    Jon Brion did the music?? That IS inspired

    by D.Vader

    I guess he needed something to do now that PT Anderson prefers to go with Johnny Greenwood.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 10:55 p.m. CST

    A different review... mine.

    by nonsensical

    Gotta say, going into ParaNorman I really didn't know what to expect. I mean at best or even at worst it could have been just like Coraline. Depending on how you felt about that movie that's either a good thing or a bad thing. Thankfully, this is nothing like Coraline and even though I liked Coraline there are definitely some problems with the film. Poorly mixed audio and a weak story anyone? In the case of ParaNorman, Laika has done some brilliant work here. There are very, very few problems with the film. Only one really comes to mind and it's more of an artistic choice that I would have made differently. The audio is well balanced and you can actually hear everything that is said this time. Especially during the climax of the film. You know, when it's important. The story is pretty tight except for a few transitional areas and maybe with one throw away line about a character that never really goes anywhere. Now, this film is animated beautifully and having seen several behind the scenes talks this past week at Siggraph. Many on the process of blending the CG and Stop-Frame aspects of the film. As well as the creation of the puppets. You almost never know when a character is CG or a puppet. It's that damn good and if Laika can turn out more great films like this in a time frame that is faster than one every three or four years then they will definitely have a major impact on the animated film market. ParaNorman is a fun adventurous film that reminded me of the Goonies at times. It's really a great film and one I found to be highly entertaining. If you were on the fence on this one, don't be. It's totally worth seeing. Now from here I will get into the story and so I guess this is where I say, SPOILERS. Again SPOILERS AHEAD ParaNorman starts out with us watching a Zombie movie. Norman is actually the one watching the movie, but we aren't watching him watch the pulp film. No we are watching this film. At first I thought this was odd, funny, but odd. When we see Norman watching the movie he's sitting there with his grandmother and at first we don't know she's dead. Norman gets called into the kitchen and there is some genuinely funny parts where we are introduced to his parents and older sister. Especially where we find out that his grandmother is dead and that Norman can see and talk to her. Then we follow Norman to school. Now, if you happen to be unlucky enough to have the name "Norman" you might be drawn back into middle school where you will find all manor of bully and taunting awaiting you. Norman is the freaky kid at school that talks to dead people. All the time. Not that you didn't know that from the trailers but it's there. Everyone knows he talks to dead people, but they don't like it and they don't have a problem letting him know that. Norman is harassed, bullied, and generally shunned and picked on. Though the fat kid, Niel, that also gets picked on sees this and figures, what the hell. We can be friends. Then Norman has visions and things start to get worse for him. After school Niel tries to make friends with Norman, but not before his Uncle Pendergast (the bum played by John Goodman) shows up alive and tells him that it's his destiny to prevent the witch's curse. Turns out Uncle Pendergast and Norman share a family trait. They can both see ghosts and talk to them. So, it's their duty to read from the book and prevent the witch's curse every year on the anniversary. Laika does a great job here explaining the story and keeping it light and funny while also making it feel a little creepy and uncomfortable. Definite sense of stranger danger even though Norman knows that the bum is his uncle. After Uncle Pendergast is scared away by Niel and his spicy hummus the two go build on their friendship a little and Uncle Pendergast goes back home for the book. Where he dies... hilariously. The next day in school Norman is visited in the bathroom by his Uncle and gets more explanation. Not much of one, but enough that Uncle Pendergast moves on. Norman starts to struggle with what he should do and ultimately decides to go and get the book and do what his Uncle asked. Unfortunately he doesn't know where the witch was buried and with the interference of the bully sort of unleashes the witch's curse. It's pretty intense and might be a bit too scary for younger kids when this happens. Zombies rise the town panics. There's a hilarious bit with a vending machine that I think Laika did perfectly here. Most of the jokes in the film are well crafted and executed and the funniest ones are NOT in the trailer thankfully. Oh yeah, back to Zombie chaos. So the town deals with Zombies like you would expect villagers to when going after Frankenstein's Monster. Chaos breaks out all over but not quite the way you would expect and given that there are only seven Zombies it seems like this town over reacts just a little. Especially when it comes to Norman, who is just trying to stop the curse and get the Zombies back in the ground. Okay, from here I get into the ending of the film... or at least I would if I didn't think you should go and see how it ends for yourself, and I do. Seriously, ParaNorman is a great film. The more I think about it the more I like it. This is easily the best thing that Laika has ever, and I mean EVER, done. It's way better than Aardman's Pirates Band of Misfits film from earlier this year and it makes me less excited for Frankenweenie which honestly looks pretty weak now after seeing ParaNorman. I can't wait to see what Laika has in store for audiences next.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 10:58 p.m. CST

    Kidd, you didn't do a good enough job explaining your position

    by D.Vader

    Your conclusion comes from.... Norman giving a few too many explanatory monologues? That's the deal breaker for you? Sorry, I'm going to need more than that. This review feels incomplete. A throwaway.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 11:29 p.m. CST

    I agree with the review

    by jimmy_009

    The movie was good, but it could have been better. I think they missed an opportunity to do a stop motion Monster Squad meets Romero style of movie, which would have been pretty epic. But they made a choice to go in a different direction. What they did was well done, just a little predictable and safe..... SPOILERS.... I thought a lot of the setup wasn't really used. In the beginning of the movie, Norman can see ghosts pretty much everywhere, but once he gets the instructions from his uncle ten minutes in, they're pretty much no where to be seen till the end of the movie. The kid is also really into horror movies, but that fandom and knowledge is never used. I agree with the Kidd that the first act is a great setup, they just went a different direction. Again it wasn't a BAD direction per se, and it was funny and well told. I just don't think it will be one of THOSE movies that sticks with you and you just HAVE to see again.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 11:40 p.m. CST

    I also agree about the explanatory monologues...

    by jimmy_009

    ... SPOILER ... the end monologue where he's talking to the girl is way too wordy. I also don't get how Norman is suddenly an expert on psychology. That doesn't feel earned, it feels a little like they felt they had to explain to the audience a bunch of back story. I do like the message, I just think it could have been delivered a little more succinctly. While it's not at all a bad movie, I feel like the Kidd... this could have been Goonies with zombies, or Monster Squad or something. Light and breezy, but awesome and highly watchable horror comedy. Instead it's more of a "message" movie.

  • Aug. 18, 2012, 2:09 a.m. CST

    Kidd, i truly understand your stance on the film but...

    by Balkin Flabgurter

    will the kids like it?

  • Aug. 18, 2012, 2:52 a.m. CST

    I'm ashamed to share your last name, Kidd

    by DukieMichaelNamondRandy

    Oh, PARANORMAN… you had so much potential.

  • Aug. 18, 2012, 5:01 a.m. CST

    There a few movies I love with no reservation at all.

    by higgledyhiggles

    Perfection is not that simple to achieve. It`s far too easy to give films you `enjoy` a pass to the halls of cinema purity these days. Just because it appeals doesn`t make it a classic and no amount of modern superlatives will fix that. I guess it`s modern thing and especially an American one that everything has to be at 100%. Spare a thought for the other 99 (ooh political..nah). Some of my favourite movies are also pretty stupid. Guilty Pleasures they`re called. I for one am glad there`s at least one reviewer who doesn`t give movies a pass by rambling on about some childhood bollocks or a sandwich he once ate. To each his own. Now berate me until I enjoy it.

  • Aug. 18, 2012, 8:18 a.m. CST

    I always hear Kidds reviews in Eeyore's voice from Winnie the Pooh

    by Col. Tigh-Fighter

    Or possibly Droopy. Poor, poor Paranorman.

  • Aug. 18, 2012, 11:10 a.m. CST

    87% at Rottentomatoes


    Give the Kidd a break! Someone has to be the 13% minority, right? We can't have any movies with 100% at Rottentomatoes, that would be a tragedy.

  • Aug. 18, 2012, 11:41 a.m. CST

    Have the people bashing the Kidd even seen the movie?

    by jimmy_009

    It's by no means a BAD movie at all, in fact it's pretty darn good. There's a LOT to enjoy. I think he's simply saying it could have been more, which I agree with. What's wrong with that?

  • Aug. 18, 2012, 12:06 p.m. CST

    I wonder who...

    by firstxavenger

    Takes a dump in The Kidds cereal bowl every morning and where can I sign up? Even in his e-mails to people he is a total douche.

  • Aug. 18, 2012, 12:11 p.m. CST

    kids in the movie house

    by Mark

    There were lots of kids laughing in the theater I went to last night. Spoilers of sorts... The zombies were really funny but had a sadness to them that fit the story. I think they could have shown Norman talking to different types of ghosts to explain some of his knowledge, but the "dimensional" flashbacks worked pretty well, and if they went to far with that you would be going into Neil Gaiman's "The Graveyard Book" which I heard Laika might be doing. Growing up in Massachusetts we visited Salem a couple times and I could see bit's of Salem in where Norman lived. Who the witch was and how she came to be were really well done. I actually think the running time of the movie actually hurt it, an other 10-20 minutes would've really brought you in just that much more and "fleshed" out the edges. Hope to see it twice. Mark

  • Aug. 18, 2012, 12:35 p.m. CST

    I love how the Kidd's apologists/sock puppets defend him by...

    by Andrew

    saying "well he's right - all movies DO suck!" - so why read/write reviews at all? I'm pretty sure this site revolves around a genuine appreciation for film, so why be a part of this? Its cool if you hate all movies, but for fuck's sake, stop trying to sell your bias here. I think I'm right in stating that not many of us share that opinion - and if we do, how pathetic is it to hang around a site like this JUST to complain about fucking everything?

  • Aug. 18, 2012, 12:40 p.m. CST

    The movie is flawed but beautiful.

    by Mono

    And by the way -- what movie isn't flawed? In general, I thought it was terrific. Other talkbackers have pointed out a few issues: Could things have been fleshed out just a bit more? Yes. Could the humor have been slightly sharper? Yes. Does it make sense that Norman stops seeing ghosts as soon as it becomes convenient for the plot? No, it doesn't. But Christ, the animation was really, insanely, beautifully well-done. And this movie has more feeling and atmosphere than most grown-up movies. One thing I really appreciated is how grounded and realistic they made the sets. Sure, there are things there for comic exaggeration. But the town seems like a run-down kind of place where real people struggle to get by. One of the many things Hollywood deserves to get nut-punched for is the fact that movies no longer resemble what the real world looks like. Everything is slickly-designed. 20-somethings in Hollywood movies live in 1200 square foot apartments in Manhattan that look like they were designed by teams of gay decorators. Landscape workers drive beat-up trucks but live in million-dollar houses filled with fucking antiques and clay pots. Even characters who are supposed to be poor (you know they're poor because their perfectly maintained houses are slightly smaller than the homes of the other characters) have taken the time to paint the walls of the rooms different colors. You don't see dry, stickery grass in a Hollywood movie. You don't see a chain link fence. You don't see broken glass. The working class doesn't exist for Hollywood, and filmmakers seem to be under the impression that your average American movie goer will never relate to a character whose home isn't roughly six times more costly than would ever make sense in any universe. I love it when a movie character buys a beat up old house in the woods for a song to fix it up so the audience will understand that he works with his hands, and the house is some columnated 8,000 square foot monstrosity with claw foot bathtubs and huge windows, and the only way you know it's run down is that a rain gutter falls down at some point during the film. Anyway. Paranorman takes place, at least, in a world you will actually recognize. And that's a small thing, but I appreciate the fuck out of it.

  • Aug. 18, 2012, 12:49 p.m. CST

    Billy should give the talkbackers what they want:

    by buggerbugger

    His next 10 movie reviews should say how super-fucking ridiculously AWESOME and BADASS each movie is and everyone should run out and see them immediately. Battleship? YOU WON'T BELIEVE THE KICK-ASSERY ON DISPLAY! The Watch? I BROKE MY LUNGS LAUGHING! The Devil Inside? I LITERALLY CRAPPED MY PANTS IN FEAR! The Tall Man? BEST MOVIE TWIST EVER! I'd give it several minutes before the first person complains that they've just wasted their money on a shitty movie Billy gave a glowing review to and how this guy's reviews can't be trusted because he loves everything, even super-shitty movies.

  • Ahh, that explains all the 'Twilight' reviews...

  • Aug. 18, 2012, 1:04 p.m. CST

    mono, well put

    by jimmy_009

    The animation was superb, and it really does feel like a world I know. I saw little bits of that everywhere. The sets are immaculate, and the characters were extremely well designed and imaginative. One thing that really struck me was the tone when you see Norman walking to school. The music and cinematography was almost Gondry like. I also loved the final revelation about the older brother at the end. Most of the audience laughed, but of course there were a couple of "Oh come on!!!" like their kids were suddenly exposed to a horribly corrupting agenda. Couldn't help but smile at that.

  • I know dumb people hate smart people and all, but lay off him. You are dumb and like everything. He has over a 100 IQ and sees how retarded most movies are that you like...just deal with it. Or go watch another Transformers movie and jack off to the cinematic brilliance..whatever.

  • Aug. 18, 2012, 3:38 p.m. CST


    by Rupee88

    yes well said. These people never learn. They buy into the hype and buy the ticket and sit there and watch a bad movie, and ensure that more bad movies will be made for the rest of us. They are the problem and the cause of all the shit films...not the "evil" studio heads or poor directors or anyone else. It is the people who pay for crap and then pay for more the filmmakers create more of it to get more money from the people with poor taste and low expectations..ok end of rant.

  • Aug. 18, 2012, 5 p.m. CST

    You're right Rupee, you're fucking brilliant

    by Andrew

    because it takes a massive IQ to hate on every movie. Not appreciating anything is a sign of intelligence.

  • Aug. 18, 2012, 5:55 p.m. CST

    Do you even like movies Kidd?

    by Quin

    Just wondering because I have rarely seen a positive review of any film by Kidd.

  • Aug. 18, 2012, 7:54 p.m. CST

    It has nothing to do with liking or disliking the film

    by Rgold717

    The dude simply can not write a well written review, plain and simple. Just read his "The Tall Man," review. It's an absolute horrid read and just about the worst I've seen from this site.

  • Aug. 18, 2012, 9:02 p.m. CST

    Loved it...

    by Lord Elric

    I get what The Kidd is saying, and it sounds like he liked it more then what's being read into. But really, I didn't notice the explanatory monologues so much. At least not enough that I felt they dragged anything down,. They're there due to today's audiences,especially in the U.S., being perceived as having to have everything explained for them. It's a bad perception, but there it is. There's more love for horror films here then in any of the last big horror franchises, like SAW or the sleep inducing PARANORMAL ACTIVITY movies. The 3d was decent, when it was there, the animation is great, music has lots of nice little John Carpenteresque cues, there's jokes for kids and adults,and I thought the whole thing worked out great, especially for a kid's film.

  • Aug. 18, 2012, 9:23 p.m. CST

    just got back

    by drave117

    I feel the opposite about it compared to the Kidd. I felt like the first half, while clever and beautifully crafted, was par for the course, and then the last act kicks into high gear and delivers something surprising and sublime. Speaking of which, does anybody know what song was used in the credits? I forgot to look for the name of the song, I was in such a daze at the end of the movie.

  • Aug. 18, 2012, 10:25 p.m. CST

    Ever wonder why Rupee88...

    by Red_Right_Return

    always shows up to defend The Kidd's reviews? Go look for yourself. Any negative review has a Rupee88 comment defending this joker's excuse for movie reviews. Always the same thing too. How everyone else is stupid and he and The Kidd have this cosmic intelligence the rest of us can't understand. I bet he didn't even see this movie. Oh wait, maybe he did and he is actually just The Kidd himself?

  • Aug. 19, 2012, 4:21 a.m. CST

    I bet


    if the Kidd ingested antidepressants he would like the movies more. Or in Paranorman's case, smoke some weed.

  • Aug. 19, 2012, 4:37 a.m. CST

    drave, the song was little ghost by the white stripes.

    by Mono

  • Aug. 19, 2012, 6:45 a.m. CST

    thanks, mono!

    by drave117

    Son of a bitch.. there is a White Stripes song I like... My world is crumbling...

  • Aug. 19, 2012, 3:08 p.m. CST

    At least Kidd's reviews balance out Harry's!

    by jackofhearts29

    Not that two extremes make a perfect mix, but... it's nice to have a cynic to balance out Harry's "5-year-old retarded child" viewpoint. It isn't much of a balance, though, when it's 100 Kidd reviews per Harry review.

  • Aug. 19, 2012, 4:19 p.m. CST

    Sorry to say

    by oregontrail

    I don't post often, but anyone who says this films 'works well' needs to see some good films. It is painstakingly slow. In the first 5 minutes I was worried. The rest was a talky mess. Beautiful? Yes. Great animation? Yes. Good film, heck no. It's boring, messy and presents us with no reason to care about anything or anyone. It's setting in the east goes completely wasted. How about visiting an old New England town and recreating that feeling? How about some accents? How about some kind of local color? It's all so generic! I saw a post somewhere where they asked why they didn't read any Stephen King. Not a bad point. Get a point of view with particulars. Why not set it on the coast, an old haunted new england town...And why make the kid a monster lover if in fact, he has to actually face monsters? Why mix up zombies with ghosts? Why would a kid that into scary stuff be that freaked out? Give me a character who is not into models of zombies and vampires and put HIM into a situation where he has to rise above his fears and solve a problem. It's a truly horrendous waste. The work of a studio that badly needs to look beyond the block they live on to see the larger world. I'm all for DIY attitudes, but let's be honest when what is produced is bad. This is a bad film with amazing potential.

  • People need to get more passionate about the neccessity for NON CGI 2D ANIMATED FILMS made by artists, NOT CORPORATE ENTITIES. I'm sure this movie is PRETTY, Coraline was PRETTY, but it seriously lacked the depth of the book it was based on. These films, with their artistic pretenses, aim squarely for mass suburban tastes, just like 150 dollar orange Nikes do. People need to stand up and fight Pixar and Laika- these are companies who are stealing from the underground and moving us farther and farther from the rich history of real handmade animation in this country. Even the Hensons are doing CGI now. Even the Muppets are owned by Disney, Sesame Street, which used to have cool animated interstitials, those are all made by computers, flick through the kids cable stations on Saturday morning EVERY SHOW LOOKS LIKE SHITTY PLAYSTATION GRAPHICS Kids are being cheated and we need to stand up and fight. Will Vinton, who invented Claymation, was fired from his own studio, AND NO ONE SAID A THING.

  • Aug. 19, 2012, 9:11 p.m. CST

    it's the "Vs" and "100% infamous" shtick that bugs me

    by snaredrum

    after that, he could write the most well informed, insightful review ever and he'd still look like a dumbass.

  • Aug. 20, 2012, 5:38 a.m. CST

    snaredrum, exatcly

    by sasquatch_with_a_swatch_watch

    The Marlboro smoking badass schtick wears a little thin. I always thought it was pretty immature, a throwback to the backwards red baseball cap on Fred Durst, Fight Club, Boondock Saints... the whole "WHO HERE IN SOUTH FLORIDA WANTS FREE TICKETS TO AMERICAN REUNION!!!" you just know this guy owns a bowling shirt with flames up the sides. and the only reason The Kidd doesn't give good reviews is because Fight Club came out 15 years ago... "cinema" has been for wussies since then