Polychrome Interest

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Animation Week: ParaNorman, Frozen and The Secret of Kells

Monday MoviesLast week, I spend my free time watching animations. It’s amazing how I fell so different to other people when it comes to animation, you’ll see what I meant soon.

I watched three different styles of animation…the last one (in my review) is clearly my favorite style since the day I began watching animation. It’s not so easy for me to accept digital animation, I still prefer the old style where people are still using their hand to draw the animation.

The stories are also different. I was planning to watch Japanese animation too but 4 movies will end up in an extremely long post…so the Japanese one will be for later 😉

Let’s begin the review 🙂

ParaNorman (2012)

ParaNorman_posterFrom imdb

A misunderstood boy takes on ghosts, zombies and grown-ups to save his town from a centuries-old curse.

ParaNorman is a 3D stop-motion animated film. I have heard about ParaNorman from a friend but haven’t got the chance to see it till now.  It’s supposed to be a comedy horror tho it’s more to comedy than horror for me. Zombie never frightened me.

I really like ParaNorman because the story turns out to be different from what I expected from the trailer. I often able to predict how American animation (from Pixar, Dreamwork and Disney) will end, none has ever surprised me (not even the movie I am going to review next)…ParaNorman has that element of surprised, there are still predictable characters, but over all the ending is unexpected. It isn’t as great as Coraline but it’s still fun and unpredictable turns of story is always much appreciated.

Director: Sam Fell, Chris Butler
Voice cast: Kodi Smit-McPhee, Jodelle Ferland, Tucker Albrizzi, Anna Kendrick, Casey Affleck, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Leslie Mann, Jeff Garlin, Bernard Hill, Elaine Stritch, Tempestt Bledsoe, John Goodman, Alex Borstein
Rating: 3,5 stars

Frozen (2013)

Frozen posterFrom imdb:

Fearless optimist Anna teams up with Kristoff in an epic journey, encountering Everest-like conditions, and a hilarious snowman named Olaf in a race to find Anna’s sister Elsa, whose icy powers have trapped the kingdom in eternal winter.

I watched this simply because it gets too famous to be overlooked. Almost all the girls in my sixth grade class enjoy it and many people say it’s a great movie. I do have my doubt considering it’s from Disney. But BRAVE had left me impressed and I dare say it’s the best princess animation by Disney. So I dare myself to go and watch Frozen.

…Seriously, Frozen is one of the most overrated movies I have ever watched. It doesn’t life up to the hype at all…it is just another extremely predictable Disney princess movie….and typical characters. My friend told me it’s about sister bond…yeah right!! The sisters don’t even know each other, it is more about Anna and Kristoff. My Neighbour Totoro (makes me want to see it again) has a way better sister bond than Frozen.

I almost drop the movie after 30 minutes of boring singing and all pretty and perfect princess bouncing here and there….but I continued to see what happens next because I was watching it with my friend. I quite like the scene where Elsa create the ice castle…that’s the only best thing on this animation.

Director: Chris Buck, Jennifer Lee
Voice cast: Kristen Bell, Idina Menzel, Jonathan Groff, Josh Gad,Santino Fontana
Rating: 1,5 stars

The Secret of Kells (2009)

The Secret of KellsFrom imdb:

The animated story of the boy behind the famed Book of Kells.

Why is this movie has lower rating in imdb than Frozen is beyond me (although in metascore it’s much higher than Frozen) because it is WAAAAAYYYY better than Frozen in MANY ways.

I have never heard of this animation before until I saw it in Ruth’s blog, Flixchatter and then she recommended it for me through her comment (here). I look for the trailer and I was awed by the art, it reminded me so much of the art on Ghibli animation. The trailer mesmerized me  even though I have no idea what’s the story is all about.

I like the fact that I couldn’t guess what happens next, everything is magical in this animation. I know instantly when I saw the monks that the movie was about Christianity but it didn’t show much of that aspect. It didn’t focus on the religion even though (after doing some research) the Book of Kells was real, it is an illuminated manuscript of the Bible which has since become an Irish national treasure.

The movie highlighted the life of little monk named Brendan; it covered his life inside the wall and his friendship with a forest fairy named Aisling.

Again, I have to mention the stunning artwork..it was truly a delight to see. So beautiful and enchanting, as magical as the fairy. I have never seen such stunning artwork in an animated movies other than animation from Ghibli. The Secret of Kells and Coraline are the only two western animation (so far) which can awed me as much as Ghibli’s.

Check this slideshow to see how beautiful the world of Kells is

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

From this interview in AWN.com, I found out that the animators were indeed inspired by Ghibli and other 2D animation

“The main stylistic influences outside of medieval art that we referenced were Genndy Tartakovsky’s Samarai Jack, which uses so many international filmic and art influences so well, Miyazaki’s gentle early work like Totoro, Michel Ocelots 2D work and of course The Thief and the Cobbler, and Hungarian folktale films from Kecskemet film studio.”

No wonder I instantly fallen in love with the art and the story. You can read a more thorough review at Flixchatter.

Director: Tomm Moore
Voice Cast: Brendan Gleeson, Evan McGuire, Christen Mooney, Mick Lally
Rating: 4,5 stars

I guess you can easily see what kind of animation I enjoy the most…I always enjoy an animation with stunning artwork and beautiful, unpredictable story. I like animations that have imagination beyond real world not so fluffy and childish.

Have you watched any of these animations? I highly recommend The Secret of Kells!!

I am now waiting for The Song of The Sea by the same makers  of The Secret of Kells


I will close this post with a song from The Secret of Kells.


About Novroz

I actively maintained 2 blogs. My personal blog is about things that I love: Turtles, Books, Movies, Music, Larc en Ciel, Muse, Cillian Murphy, The Mighty Boosh and many more. I also help my 3 super cute turtles, Kroten, Papoe and Kurome, to maintain their own blog: http://kamekroten.wordpress.com

16 comments on “Animation Week: ParaNorman, Frozen and The Secret of Kells

  1. ruth
    June 16, 2014

    Hey I’m glad you saw Secret of Kells and loved it! It’s not as well-known which is a shame really, I tweeted the filmmaker about it and his new movie and he retweeted me!

    Haven’t seen ParaNorman but I’m more inclined to see Coraline. Bummer you didn’t love Frozen, I think it’s a lot of fun but if you’re not a fan of Disney stuff then I can see why you’re not as enamored by it.

    • Novroz
      June 17, 2014

      Yeah too bad all the best animation, like Kells, are often forgotten by the easy to digest animation.

      I wish I can like Frozen like everyone else but this kind of movie never interest me since childhood

  2. Reading your post reminds me that I’ve always wanted to watch The Secret of Kells, so nice to know that it is inspired by Ghibli.

    I like Paranorman, but I love Frozen more 🙂 I think it’s because of the sisters story but I find the singing wonderful. But perhaps you are more of a Ghibli fan (I love Ghibli too!)

    • Novroz
      June 18, 2014

      Sister story? No I don’t see it that way, they don’t even bond. Like I said above, totoro has more sister bond than Frozen.

      It’s not JUST Ghibli that I like, I like traditional animation with unpredictable story…and not so fluffy and childish.

      Hehehe I know I am not in agreement with many people when it comes to Disney’s animation. They are just TOO predictable.

  3. Alexis
    June 19, 2014

    I once saw a movie called Ponyo. It’s great. I think it is BEAUTIFUL. I think you will like it. See the trailer >

    – Alexis
    P.S. My turtle Buddy would LOVE to meet yours. To bad we live across the world from you!

    • Novroz
      June 19, 2014

      I have seen Ponyo 🙂
      And yes I agree…the art colour in that movie is gorgeous.

      We can always see each other through the net 🙂

  4. Alice Audrey
    June 19, 2014

    I saw Frozen at my dd’s insistence. Then once we saw it she had the same reaction as you. Major disappointment. I went in with few preconceptions and didn’t really mind, though if not for her I wouldn’t have bothered at all.

    A Ghibli film? I’m there!

    • Novroz
      June 19, 2014

      Finally!!! You don’t know how glad I am reading your comment! Everyone I know seems to love that movie…I feel like I am the only one feeling differently. I am so happy that you and your daughter feeling the same thing as I am. I wouldn’t have bothered too if not because at least I know what the girls are talking about.

      Of you like Ghibli…you would like The Secret of Kells

      • Alice Audrey
        June 20, 2014

        I’m not quite sure how Frozeen got to be such as run away hit. I enjoyed much of it, but I enjoy most of what i watch.

        • Novroz
          June 24, 2014

          I usually turned off what I don’t enjoy (just like I stopped reading a book). I would have stopped the movie if not for my curiosity.

  5. Alice Audrey
    June 25, 2014

    There was a time when I had to finish every book I started, no matter how bad. Not knowing how it ended would eat me alive. Now I’ll happily stop at any point if I get fed up or bored.

    • Novroz
      June 26, 2014

      Me too. Too much good book/movie waiting to be read/watched out there, why bother spending it on book/movie we do not enjoy

  6. Theresa
    June 29, 2014

    Haha, I love Frozen! But, I did grow up with Disneys and liked watching them, I suppose for me it was a return to that childhood, that kind of old Disney that got lost with Pixar. And I do like a bit of predictable, cheesy easy-watching sometimes 😀
    But I have also seen Book of Kells and it is brilliant, I love the artwork too! I shall keep an eye out for Song of the Sea. Have you seen “Spirited Away” by any chance?

    • Novroz
      June 29, 2014

      Of course I have seen Sen To Chihiro Kamikakushi (Spirited Away), that’s why my standard for animation is a bit different. It is always in my top5 favorite animation.

      You should see all Ghibli animation, they are all great and not so easy to predict.

  7. Pingback: Against the Crowd Blogathon | Polychrome Interest

  8. Pingback: I’m Back and Here’s My Top 5 Movie in 2014 | Polychrome Interest

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