Friday, February 13, 2009

Review: Coraline (2009)

Coraline is a movie with a lot of personality. Adapted from Neil Gaiman, the legendary fantasy writer with an attitude, it's witty, pretty, and totally adventurous.

It has an absolute masterful use of stop-motion animation, which is still not widely used in modern cinema. But, that's okay, becuase it makes this film even more unique. In fact, I don't think it could've worked any other way. Director Henry Selick (Nightmare Before Christmas, obviously), you can tell, had so much fun putting this piece together, and it's fun for the audience too.

Coraline is a lonely girl in a new, creepy house, with apathetic parents and dreary neighbors. But then she finds a portal to an alternate reality where her "other parents" dote on her like a princess. She gets swept up until she finds out her other mother is actually evil and plans to steal her away and essentially make her a slave child. Is it all a dream or not? That part is pretty ambiguous, but a child's imagination is more fun than what we normally have to deal with in average day-to-day life.

I think this movie was charming and whimsical. It wasn't too cutesy or glamorous. It had a very distinct air like that of Lemony Snicket. It's mischievous and fun. Really, truly, a terrific film.

Recommended? Yes. For everyone.

Grade: A

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