ParaNorman scrapes the bottom of the zombie barrel

Posted by CB Droege

Animation studio Laika recently released its first full-length trailer for ParaNorman. The film is about a young boy, Norman, who can see dead people, Sixth Sense style.

When zombies invade his town, he must enlist the help of the spirits around him to fend off the attack and save the town. 

This doesn’t sound nearly as compelling as Laika’s last feature, Coraline, which also a story of the supernatural, but was writen by fantasy master Neil Gaiman, and proved to be simultaneously touching and exciting.

ParaNorman mostly just looks silly, but there is always the chance that it’s just a poorly cut trailer. We might be seeing the worst parts of the film here to appeal to a certain childish audience. Still, I think we might be scraping the bottom of the zombie barrel with this one.

Either way, I would expect lots of horror flick parodies and trope subversions to take the place of regular jokes.

Here’s the official synopsis, which includes a Ghostbusters joke:

In the comedy thriller, 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, moronic 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.

ParaNorman is directed by Chris Butler (who also worked on Coraline) and Sam Fell. Notable voice performers include Casey Affleck, Jeff Garling, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, and John Goodman.

The film is set to hit theaters August 17, 2012.