Coraline – Movie
Directed by Henry Selick

Coraline is a stop motion film directed by Henry Selick. It follows the story of a young girl called Coraline. She has just moved states with her parents, her parents jobs called for the move. As they are moving in to their new home “the pink apartments” Coraline wants to have fun but her parents are busy in their studies leaving Coraline to feel Neglected. Her father tells her to go around the house looking for minute details, it is a very old building after all. Coraline finds a small door that has been planted over and locked. This door leads to her “Other mother” who turns out to be some kind of evil witch spider thing, I’m not 100 percent sure what she really was but thats besides the point. Her other mother offers Coraline all kinds of fun and exciting things at a time that she is vulnerable because her real parents have left her feeling unwanted. This paradise quickly becomes more perverted when her other parents want to sew button eyes on to Caroline. At this point she is scared and tried to leave but her Other Mother resists. It turns out that the other mother wants to eat Caroline just as she did with children before her. The other mother then traps her real parents which forces Caroline to go back to try to find them and get them back. At the end of the day she saves everyone, all is well and everyone lived happily ever after, we have to remember it is a children’s movie all be it a rather creepy one.

Initially when i decided to watch this movie and use it for a wide reading response, based off what i remember from the movie when i first saw it when i was around 10, i thought there would be loads of gothic fiction stuff in there – other then the real creepy story line and graphics, particularly for a 10 year old – and im sure there actually is however im having trouble identifying all of it. Im not entirely sure if this was just due to the fact that is was a visual text and there aren’t really quotes that i can directly look at to derive meaning from or if its just not that gothicy, either way i had a hard time. Despite this initial difficulty i did manage to chock out one or too ideas relating to gothic fiction the first being ‘the super natural’ *insert ghost sounds* another one although harder to describe throughout text as there are no quotes to back it up would be the visuals/appearance of the movies and scenes.

Supernatural is anything that supersede what is natural, is greater than natural. Im sure i could make an excellent argument about how the world in which Carolines ‘Other Mother’ lives in is greater than natural. Carolines natural world is with her real parents who are boring and don’t seem to want to spend much time with her, in her natural world she has weird neighbours and he finds it hard to get what she wants. In ‘the button world’ -other then the obvious unnatural abilities of her ‘other mother’ and the ghosts and such- her parents are great fun and do nice things for Caroline and want to make her happy. She has really cool amazing neighbours and everyone around her seems to want to please her. I would say that that is pretty damn unnatural, The button world does supersede Carolines natural, or normal, world.
Going back to what i said a few lines ago, Carolines other mother has a huge amount of manipulation power, not only emotional and mental but physical as well, id say her ability is unnatural and the apparitions that Caroline sees that tell her about what is going on could also be considered to be unnatural, failing that Caroline may have just been having a bad trip but i highlight doubt that.

The stylistic choices throughout the movie also have a relatively gothic feel to them, particularlay the other mother later on in the movies. She starts to become boney and gaunt. Her clothing starts to get dark and drab, her eyes – or buttons – get darker. She gets taller which gives her a more powerful look.  The weather is often stormy creating a gothic feel. And something about stop motion makes it seem a bit more creepy, however that might just be me. Anyway, All of these stylist choices in videography and costume help to give the film a more gothic appeal then your typical kids movie.

I found this movies pretty damn creepy to be honest, just like i didi when i was younger. I think if it was my first time watching it i wouldn’t have found it so bad but it brought back memories from when i was younger watching it this time. Something about the buttons and how they were stitched one to what i would assume is their eyes underneath made me feel uncomfortable and made me think about how you hear about serial murderers that like to stitch faces together and put them on their face.
but over all its a pretty interesting movie, defiantly different and defiantly enjoyable.

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