ParaNorman 3D

Featured In Issue 173, January 2013

3D Picture5
WSR Score5
Basic Information on new release titles is posted as soon as titles are announced. Once reviewed, additional data is added to the database.
Universal Studios Home Entertainment
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Scary action and images, thematic elements, some rude hmor and language
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Single Side, Dual Layer (BD-50)
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Not Indicated
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Sam Fell & Chris Butler
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DTS HD Lossless 5.1, DTS 5.1
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From the makers of Coraline, ParaNorman tells the story of Norman, a boy who must use his gift of seeing and speaking with the dead to save his town from a centuries-old curse about to come true. Caught in a wild race against time, the young ghoul whisperer will find his paranormal abilities pushed to their otherworldly limits as he bravely summons up all that makes a hero—courage and compassion. (Gary Reber)

Special features include commentary with Director Sam Fell and Writer/Director Chris Butler; the Preliminary Animatic Sequences "Walking With Ghosts," "Bromance," and "Missing Ghosts" with optional commentary by Butler and Fell (HD 09:09); Peering Through The Veil, a behind-the-scenes featurette in nine parts (HD 40:49); seven featurettes: You Don't Become A Hero By Being Normal (HD 02:48), A Norman Childhood (HD 02:08), Playing As A Profession (HD 02:23), Making Norman (HD 01:38), This Little Light (HD 01:19), Have You Ever Seen A Ghost? (HD 02:16), and The Zombies Of ParaNorman (HD 02:19); D-BOX® Motion Code™; and an UltraViolet digital copy.

The 2.39:1 1080p MVC 3D Blu-ray Disc™ is absolutely spellbinding. The stop-frame animated motion, shot with 60 Canon EOS SD Mark II SLR cameras, is impeccable. The filmmakers used pairs of the Canon carefully aligned SLR cameras to capture the left eye and right eye images that compose each 3D frame. The result is an impressive 3D animated experience with a finely resolved immersive presentation. Delineation is incredibly refined, with sharp and precise edges and textures. Resolution is extraordinary in the level of refined detail in facial features, hair, clothing, and object texture. The 3D depth perspective is naturally dimensionally enhanced with the occasional positive parallax out-of-screen effect. The 3D treatment of the stop-motion animation is incredibly amazing! The presentation exhibits natural depth, with effective segments that poke out from the screen, to enhance the dramatics. Nothing is forced or seemingly out of place, but completely naturally scaled with impressive perspective. The sequences with the witch display incredible depth perspective. Other scenes exhibit impressive perceptible depth as well, which enhances the sense of scariness. The imagery never displays double image ghosting, which enhances the seamless 3D effect. As with the 2D version, colors are warm and vibrant with deep, solid blacks. The color palette is vivid and naturally hued, with excellent saturation and character. Contrast is perfectly balanced, with revealing shadow delineation. Blacks are incredibly well defined and shaded. This is such a stunning visual experience that impresses, with an imaginative and dazzling parade of eye candy that is absolutely amazing! Without hesitation, the 3D Blu-ray is the preferred experience and a showcase of the finest in stop-motion animation! (Gary Reber)

The DTS-HD Master Audio™ 5.1-channel soundtrack is beautifully recorded, with superb fidelity. Foley sound effects are perfectly rendered, with impressive low-level clarity and definition. The music score is fantastic, with a wide and deep soundstage and revealing instrumental timbre that is impressive. The ADR is excellent and delivers convincing dialogue spatial integration with dialogue directionality. Atmospheric sound effects enhance the mood and provide dimension and dynamic character, even impressive phantom center back surround imaging and height sensation. Surround envelopment is holosonic®, with aggressive localized soundfield delineation. Bass extension sounds perfectly natural and at times extends to sub-25 Hz frequencies in the .1 LFE channel during the more intense action scenes. Pans and surround localizations are heard throughout and enhance the dimensionality of the experience that transverses the entire soundfield and immerses the listener with impressive dynamic contrasts. The sonics seemingly are even better in the 3D presentation, with seamless integration of music, sound effects, Foley, and dialogue. (Gary Reber)