The upcoming summer movie boasts some very big, highly anticipated blockbusters, primarily The Dark Knight Rises and Prometheus. With these titans looming on the horizon, it’s easy to forget about some of the small, but promising films also set to release. One in particular is Paranorman, an animated horror comedy from LAIKA, the company behind the hauntingly beautiful Coraline. Unlike its 2009 predecessor, however, Paranorman seems to focus more on action than aesthetics, and a recent poster from only encourages that assumption. [ScreenCrush]

Along with the 3D tag, the image shows the potential for a stop-motion thrill ride. And don’t get me wrong, the artistry of the film looks great, but it carries more of an edgy appeal – watch the trailer to see what I mean. See synopsis below:

When 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, 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 opens in theaters on August 17th.

In the live-action category comes The Babymakers, an under hyped comedy from the Broken Lizard team (Super Troopers, Beerfest). Considering the details so far, the lack of attention seems warranted –it features a cast of second-rate stars, including leads Paul Schneider and Olivia Munn, and the film received a mixed reception at SXSW. Even the newly released poster from Coming Soon fails to wow me. See image and synopsis below:


After trying everything to get his wife Audrey (Olivia Munn) pregnant, Tommy Macklin (Paul Schneider) realizes to his horror that he may be “shooting blanks.” Terrified that his marriage may fall apart, Tommy recruits his friends (and an Indian ex-mobster) to rob a sperm bank where he made a deposit years ago. As with any half-baked scheme, everything can and does go wrong, testing the limits of Tommy and Audrey’s relationship. THE BABYMAKERS is a hilarious twist on the heist film genre, a laugh-out loud comedy showing how far one couple will go in hopes of creating a new life.

But maybe I’m judging Babymakers too harshly – after all, director Jay Chandrasekhar and his fellow lizards managed to succeed with a silly cop film full of unknowns, and all without the benefit of a decent promotional campaign. I guess we’ll see when the film releases on VOD July 3rd and then theatrically on July 27th.

Based on the poster and synopsis, do you think The Babymakers sounds promising? What do you think about Paranorman?

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