Directed by Henry Selick
Screenplay by Henry Selick
Based on a novella by Neil Gaiman
Voice acting by Dakota Fanning, Teri Hatcher, Jennifer Saunders, Dawn French, Keith David, John Hodgman, Robert Bailey Jr. and Ian McShane
Release year: 2009
IMDB Rating: 8.0

Based on a novella by Neil Gaiman, Coraline is an animated stop-motion 3D film directed by Henry Selick, director of The Nightmare Before Christmas and James and the Giant Peach.

The horror-fantasy-themed Coraline begins when Coraline Jones and her parents (Mel and Charlie Jones) move into the Pink Palace Apartments. As her parents get too busy with their works, Coraline wanders around and outside the house. She meets Wybourne Lovat who lives with his grandmother, and then she encountered The Cat which later in ‘the other world’ can speak with her. She also meets with her other neighbors such as Miss Spink and Miss Forcible – both are retired actresses – and also a retired gymnast Mr. Bobinsky.

Her adventure starts when she discovers a small door covered by wallpaper which turns out to be bricked up. Later that night, upon following a mouse which appears in her room, she finds out that the door is no longer bricked and it actually leads to another world of her life. There she meets her Other Mother and her Other Father, as well as her other neighbors.

Life in the other world is so perfect for her, just the opposite of her real world where her parents just got too busy with their activities. In this other world however, the characters have buttons instead of eyes. Coraline later encountered The Cat which can speak in the other world. After some visits to this other world, she is offered the chance to stay forever there on one condition: to have buttons sewn over her eyes.

A captivating movie, Coraline is full of wonderful scenes. In addition, the theme is rather unusual for a child movie. Yet, the story is impressive despite its similarities to Alice in Wonderland. The difference is that Coraline has a darker settings that sets an eerily spooky atmosphere throughout the film. Its plot is based on the real-life fact that there are many Coralines out there who feel neglected as their parents got too busy with their jobs. Some venture away to find their perfect world to live in but only face great risk in the end. In the end, the moral of the story is that there’s no better place like your real home and there are no better parents than your real parents.

With its beautiful scenes, unique atmosphere, and great plot, this is a must-see movie. I give it a 10 out of 10 for the final rating.