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Movie poster for ParaNorman

Movie poster for ParaNorman

As someone who communicates on a daily basis with those in spirit, I was very excited to be sitting down recently with my family to watch a new DVD release, ParaNorman which was in the theaters this past summer.

ParaNorman is about a kid with the ability to see ghosts and spirits, not only can he see them, he can also communicate with them.

He is the only one in his family with these abilities and at school he is teased and given a hard time for his unique abilities.

The movie centers on a curse that a “witch” had placed upon the town many years ago during a very dark chapter in the towns history, similar to the Salem witch trials.

A group of spirits/ghosts are awoken and pretty soon things in town get really weird and Norman is the towns only hope for dealing with the angry ghosts.

The movie gets a little wild and crazy here and plays very loosely with reality as the ghosts become zombies and go on the attack.

Filmed in stop motion animation by the same folks who do Flushed Away and Coraline, the movie is very well done.

A good way to describe the movie is take one part the Sixth Sense, one part Scooby Doo and one part Diary of a Wimpy Kid and roll them all together into one movie – it works.

Both adults and kids will find this movie entertaining, and the ending is fantastic! I found myself teared up and I was not the only one.

I highly recommend this movie and give it 4.75 stars out of 5 – the only thing that kept it from being a solid five star review was the inclusion of zombies in what was otherwise a fairly realistic take on the paranormal.

Go out and buy it and add it to your movie collection today, you will not be disappointed.

For more about myself and what I do, visit; http://www.charlespeden.com.

-Charles

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The other night my wife and I picked up a copy of “Paranormal Activity” at the local video store and popped it in the DVD player for a relaxing and entertaining evening. We had heard some good things about the film and with several of our friends asking our opinion of it, we figured that we should check it out.

At first we chuckled as a somewhat familiar series of events began to unfold. As in … sensing a presence around the home and being freaked out at the littlest noise or creak in the night. However, once the “psychic” was introduced I was severely dismayed. The person who played the role of the psychic did an abysmal job at best of portraying a genuine psychic, he was a complete hack. Not once when called into investigate a ghost issue have I peppered the homeowner with questions in an effort to learn more about the situation. I prefer instead to describe what I am being told has happened and to bring forward details concerning what has led them to call me in to assist them. Frequently the place is simply old … needs new wiring or windows and there is nothing otherworldly going on, other times it is “haunted” but not by anything scarier than a loving relative who is popping in from the other side to say hello.

A real psychic does not need to ask all the questions that were shown in the movie and a real psychic would not simply throw his hands up and walk out on the situation.

With the movie telling you that the spirit presence is actually demonic and not simply the soul of another human or animal and with the movie portraying the psychic as a hack … it becomes evident very quickly that this is a complete work of fiction and in no way comes even close to revealing the truth about such matters.

In my experience, demons as they are commonly portrayed simply do not exist. Oh sure there are angry spirits and souls of tortured human souls out there, but I am yet to see any real evidence that demons exist. In many ways the movie “Paranormal State” works as a Christian “plant” in that it discredits psychics, exposes spirits as demons and never offers up any solutions allowing “the Church” the ability to point at the movie as a cautionary tale for messing with attempts to communicate with spirits.

The bottom line is that this movie is one great big stinking pile of dung and is a great disservice to those who have had to live with real ghosts and who have need of the use of a genuine psychic who can actually offer real world solutions, advice and most importantly is able to effectively communicate with those in spirit.

If you feel that you have a visitor from beyond the grave … check out www.charlespeden.com to book a reading or to learn more about psychic medium and animal communicator, Charles Peden.

The night before last I sat down and with some anticipation watched a new show about “ghost hunters” on the Discovery Channel, the show is called “Ghost Lab” and appears to be very similar to several other shows on other networks, but because it was on the Discovery channel I thought that perhaps it would be a more respectful and serious approach to the subject, combined with some hard science of course. As a psychic medium myself who has encountered and worked with several ghosts, I really wanted to see what would happen and how they were going to work with the subject.

It opened up looking promising enough, they had selected an interesting location to shoot the episode I watched, Tombstone, Arizona … pretty much guaranteeing some sort of connection, plenty of violent deaths in the past – coupled with offering up the locations of shootout and graveyards as tourist attractions. First they introduced us to the team and I was a bit disappointed that they did not have even one “sensitive” or psychic with them. They have plenty of gadgetry, but nothing that I had not seen before … your standard EMF readers, infrared, camcorders, and still cameras as well as audio recorders and motion sensors. The use of the hand held camcorder footage gave the show a bit of the “Blair Witch Project” feel from time to time, with the HD cameras they were running, it was strictly for effect, for the viewer. When viewing the footage of the individual holding the camcorder I was surprised to see that the lens cap was hanging and not tucked away, straps showing up in shots has happened before where people have confused the close-up of a finger or a strap as an other worldly energy burst … etc.

After introducing the crew, and the location that they were investigating, they showed us clips from interviews with residents of the town who claimed to have witnessed paranormal events themselves, including actually seeing ghosts and more. I must say though, that if there was one place in the country where you might find people who believe in ghosts, it would be Tombstone, after all it’s probably good for business.

After sharing some ghost stories from the townspeople, the crew went about setting up for the investigation. They focused on a few locations within the town. The Bird Cage Theater was the first location and they set up all of the gear mentioned earlier. One of the things that was mentioned as possibly being a paranormal experience was an old speaker that though it had “no electricity” running to it, the woman who worked there claimed it would make noises.

During the course of the evening while investigating the room they picked up a very load static/feedback like noise coming from the speaker after they mentioned how quiet it was in there. I was a bit surprised when the employee came out from the back room, why was she permitted to “go to sleep” during the investigation … and stay on the premises, not a very thorough investigation if you want to rule out another human as being responsible for the claims of paranormal investigation.

They ended up climbing a ladder and looking at the speaker a bit closer, the whole time it’s going off, and bear in mind of course that they all have cell phones, radios and cannot determine if the speaker had power going to it or not. They did seem to pick up an EVP in the location which in my opinion sounded a heck more like “you dick” than “right quick”. After all the manner in which the crew was addressing any spirits that may be present was confrontational, rude, in your face and not too friendly.

Later while in the silver mines, some more of the rude, insensitive and at the very least illogical questions were asked prior to an attempt to capture EVPs. The crew was asking if the minors were still down there mining for silver. And the crew was shouting or raising their voices, as if that could help those who read minds “ghosts and spirits” to hear you any better. I did appreciate them commenting on how hard the miners must have worked in order to chisel out the passageways in the mines, that was nice.

During or after the silver mines visit, the sky around the town lit up with lighting as a thunder storm rolled through. This got them onto a tangent about how if you supercharged an area with electricity, it may enable the ghosts or other paranormal events to materialize much easier than in other locations where there is not such a conductive material underneath the ground, possibly holding a residual charge. Nice theory, perhaps there is something to it, but I am not convinced. Think of all the metal in buildings, pipes, buried cables and other conductive materials that exist in other towns and cities around the country and they are much larger than Tombstone, granted they may not get as much lightening, but many place I know do and as far as I know that does not increase paranormal activity.

There was this weird thing they did with a Tesla Coil, and trying to supercharge the energy in the room and they also checked out the Boot Hill Cemetery where a “famous” photo of a supposed ghost was taken several years prior. They set motion sensors up all over the cemetery and then sent the only girl on the team into the middle of the cemetery at night time to sit on a folding chair by herself and take pictures/see what she saw or felt. After a bit one of the motion sensors went off and the team started running around like crazy trying to capture whatever it was.

Later they got back to the “lab” and examined their footage, they had one photo of a “shadow person” but to me, it just looked like a shadow, however I did feel a presence and I must say that if anything they were being laughed at.

Frankly I give the show a D- for the following reasons.

They are rude and aggressive in attempts to make contact.

They are loud and unprofessional.

They do not have anyone on their team who is a sensitive or psychic, how thorough can you be if you do not use every “tool” available to you?

The way the show is edited adds more to the atmosphere, almost more than their “findings”.

This show gives a bad name to genuine paranormal researchers and is simply more entertainment that is cashing in on the popularity of all things paranormal. The only positive side that I see is that it will perhaps start a dialogue among more people, a discussion about these subjects and the nature of life and death it’s self. You got to start somewhere, sure there are some other shows similar to this, but not that I have bothered to watch with a critical eye, I only am paying more attention to this one because someone who I respect, Mike Rowe from “Dirty Jobs”, ended up narrating it, much to my now disappointment and of course because it is on a channel that tends to be more analytical and scientific minded.

To learn more about myself and my work within the paranormal field, visit my web site at www.charlespeden.com.

PS

A quick look at the message boards for the show on the Discovery channels web site shows that I am far from being alone in my critique. This show is horrible!

July 2019
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