Coraline: You Do The Review!


Ellen says: I'm feeling much better this week, but my husband is still sick. I haven't seen "Coraline" yet, but given all the publicity, I'm going the first chance I get! Thanks for your remarks here and blessed be... E/

Metacritic Contributors rate the new movie Coraline


MPAA RATING: PG for thematic elements, scary images, some language and suggestive humor

Starring Dakota Fanning, Teri Hatcher, Dawn French, Jennifer Saunders, and Ian McShane

A young girl walks through a secret door in her new home and discovers an alternate version of her life. On the surface, this parallel reality is eerily similar to her real life - only much better. But when this wondrously off-kilter, fantastical adventure turns dangerous, and her counterfeit parents (including Other Mother) try to keep her forever, Coraline must count on her resourcefulness, determination, and bravery to get back home - and save her family.m (Focus Features)

The average user rating for this Movie is 9.3 out of 10 (based on 46 Votes).

Darrel R gave it a 10:
Delight, creative and artfully executed. Unlike most stop action animation, this production left me completely unaware of the techniques used to make the visuals, and focused my attention on the magic of the story, Bravo!

Melanie L gave it a 10:
Fun story and very artfully done- awesome in 3-D!

Tom N gave it a 10:
A brilliant piece of animation. Sets a new standard.

j b gave it a 5:
A good amount of scenes show real beauty and imagination, but I found myself not ever caring for these characters. Not once. Someone else mentioned that the story was reminiscent of a video game, and it is. What a shame. Unless of course your really swept away by video games. Also, paying close to 3 bucks for glasses that belong to a technology that wasn't worthwhile even fifty years ago is quite a shame as well.

Brian S gave it a 7:
A very accomplished, beautiful film.--visually stunning, and the 3D was very effective without being obtrusive. That said, I thought the last third of the film lacked energy. A lot of reviewers have mentioned the "creepy" tone, but I felt that the film never really engaged at an emotional level toward the end, which would have elevated this from a good to a great film.

Thanh-Tam H gave it a 10:
Coraline was fabulous to see in 3D, and possessed a fanciful sort of creepiness that both scares and delights. It's a movie both parent and child can enjoy equally.

Dana M. gave it a 9:
Very enjoyable movie. The 3D effect was worth the extra couple dollars admission. Incredible animation and imagination by the animators. Note the this is not a kids movie, or even a young teenager movie. A lot of the plot would just go over their heads. Bring your imagination, put on your 3D glasses and enjoy!

Noelle B. gave it a 10:
A beautifully frightening story; gracefully rendered. Loved it!

Grady P. gave it a 10:
If this had been released last year, it could easily give WALL-E a run for its money for the Oscar. It's an amazing film that's sure to become a classic, and it easily rivals The Nightmare Before Christmas (which in and of itself is one of the best animated movies of all time). Well worth seeing, can't wait for the Blu-ray release!!

Kirsten J. gave it a 10:
I'm a college student, so for financial reasons and time constraints, I rarely go to the theatres for movies. This one was an exception. I had read the book, and it had blown my mind. I saw the very first tiny clip released online in which Coraline met the ghosts, and I was fairly unimpressed. One line, the last line in the clip, changed that. "We don't remember our names." It sent chills down my spine, and I was hooked. So, I had my father take me to see it on opening night. I was once again swept off my feet. I was a little unsure at first whether the movie would compromise the story in order to play to the 3D clich├ęs as so many had before it, but my fears were put at ease. Only once in the entire film, during the opening credits, did anything come off the screen straight for the audience, and even that was an amazing artistic decision that foreshadowed with its foreshortening. The artistic direction and the cinematography were mindblowing. I had been impressed with Sweeney Todd's artistic direction, but Coraline puts it to shame. One scene explores a garden with plants so exotic and whimsical that one might expect to find them in Willy Wonka's chocolate factory. The 3D made it so tangible that it was almost impossible not to feel the thick waxy petals and leaves. The flawless marriage between Neil Gaiman's incredible story and the meticulously created masterpiece was what made this work so well. The entire reason that the 3D was not a tacky disappointment was because Selick didn't shove it in the audience's faces. So yes, the movie was visually a treat. But Coraline was much more than eye candy. The story was incredibly true to Mr. Gaiman's book. One or two differences obviously existed, but overall, I don't think I've ever seen a more accurate book adaptation. And so it, like the book, was filled to the brim with the odd mixture of characteristics that Mr. Gaiman intended. It was eerie, bizarre, delightful, funny, cute, and downright frightening. Sure, plenty of movies have parts that are scary and parts that are funny and so on... But it's a rare movie indeed that can incur all of those feelings in the same instant. Mr. Gaiman himself put it best, in a sneak peek interview: "If audiences take away terror and joy in roughly equal doses, I will be very happy."

Bob T gave it a 7:
An enjoyable film. I'm thinking that even if I hadn't read the book, I'd know where this story was going. The pacing of the story was excellent as were the 3D renderings, i.e. the acting. Now I will have to re-read the book, I seem to remember it as a bit more creepy. I'd warn folks with young (<9) kids that some content may scare the bejezus out of them for the next little while.

Charlie B gave it a 10:
This is one of the best movies I've seen in a very long time. Coraline has stunning animation, and a very original plot. I saw the 3-D version, which was just awesome. This movie is not Bambi 2, so don't bring your three year old to this movie. In short, this movie is fantastic if you like animation, and dark toned movies. I read one review that complains because a character said 'oh my god.' Frankly, that's a very typical and common expression, and is an integral part of the English language. What's funny is that those three words popped into my head about half a second before the character said it!

Logan M gave it a 9:
It hardly comes as a surprise, but Neil Gaiman has done it again! With the help of screenwriter/director Henry Selick and Laika, Coraline has become a major success. For good reason. The star power of Dakota Fanning, Teri Hatcher, and arguably They Might Be Giants add a lot to the film's success, as do their talents, but this is far and away a writer's movie. Don't mistake me, the movie's a visual feast. The modelers, "costumers" and animators at Laika are best in class. The cinematography is astounding. The 3D can sometimes be jarring, but no more so than in any other production using the technology. Many of those effects are just tremendous, however. The organic pixelizations, animated gardens and looms (of all kinds) add a great deal to a feel of enchantment viewers of all ages can really enjoy. As I said, this is a writer's movie, and that's one of the esteemed Mr. Gaiman's great talents; breaking the age barrier. It's a tradition in animation, of course, layering adult humor into child-friendly themes, but this is a writer who doesn't need animation, or even illustration, to accomplish the feat. I haven't read the book. Sorry, Neil. But rest assured I shall! In fact, I may just order it now. While I was tremendously disappointed with the screen treatment of Stardust (2007), I expect less was changed here. It would certainly make sense as Mr. Gaiman's Hollywood clout continues to grow. It's good to see genius and persistence rewarded in such a big way. The merit is clearly visible in Coraline. This movie is so charming I can hardly stand it. There are scenes that melt the heart, and few that make it skip a beat. The imagery is eternal, as are the well-stated themes of love, disaffection and fear. Layer into that timeless story the aforementioned visuals, an excellent musical score, great voice acting and Burton-beating production values and what do you get? A film like the perfect layer cake. A cake with creamy frosting, and the words "Welcome home" ringed in candles. Or a deep forgotten well surrounded by a faerie ring. Either is good. Better than good: superlative. You must not miss this film! I give it 9 of 10 points!

Anna P. gave it a 9:
This was gloriously filmed in 3D, with great depth and astonishing color. Yet it's subtle - not many of the "gotcha, 3D!" moments in this, which was nice. The story is solid, although I prefer the book version to the movie version. Nevertheless, it's a great movie for kids of all ages, and for their parents too. A breath of fresh air compared to the normal kids fare, for sure.

[Anonymous] gave it a 10:
Brilliant, dark, adventure movie. Strong plot, wonderful characters, and beautiful visual effects. Coraline is an instant classic.

Ted U. gave it a 10:
Best use of 3D ever. You really can't grasp the quality of the experience on a flat screen. And the creepiness is profound. Like E.T.A. Hoffman animated by Miyazaki.

kairi C gave it a 9:
It was really visually stunning, the 3d was a little distracting in a few places, it was really spot-on the spirit of the book, even with the changes. It was fun and creepy and me, my husband, and my 12 year old daughter all enjoyed it. Amazing stop-action like I've never seen.

Billy gave it a 10:
Excellent. Incredibly creative and one of the most entertaining and fun films I have been to in years. The stop motion is incredible. A must see at a theater, I wish my area had 3D, it would have been amazing. 2D was incredible enough.

Otto O. gave it a 10:
Visually stunning and ultimately the best what 3D has brought us so far. Some say it's dragging at times, but I beg to disagree. Everything is so well crafted is mind boggling. Wouldn't chance a thing. I newer knew stop motion animation could be done this beautifully. It's gonna be a classic. No question.

david k gave it a 9:
Excellent animation and story... I saw it in 3D and was blown away by the quality of the imagery...not for the little ones...but for teens and up it's a great film going experience.

Paul K. gave it a 10:
This is a beautifully brilliant film. So much thought, time and labor went into this, it's mindblowing. It's stop-motion animation at it's finest and the 3-D puts the whole thing over the top. If you find time, stay through the credits for the last 3-D sequence!

Jason H. gave it an 8:
I REALLY enjoyed watching this movie, and my only gripe is a strange one: About half way through the movie, it starts seeming like it's a video game.

Steve O gave it a 9:
One of the most visually entertaining experiences of my life. It's a strange, fun trip!

Jim S. gave it a 10:
The extra money for the rich 3D is absolutely a must. I was sad when the movie ended that's how much I enjoyed my experience.

Rhett R. gave it an 8:
This rating is for the non-3D version. Parent section: First off, I would not recommend taking children under 8 to this movie. The plot is a bit complex and too deep to keep the attention of younger children, and it is borderline too scary for children 6 and under. My children (8,6,3,3) love Nightmare Before Christmas. But I think this movie hits a bit too close to home since the main character is a young girl and story a twisted variation on her reality. NBC is fantastical. I regret bringing my younger children. Jury is out with the 6 YO boy. There are also a few scenes completely inappropriate for children. During the theater scene with the old ladies. one of the old ladies is in pasties and a thong. They sing about breasts, coraline points out how naked they are and even blurts out an OMG. The innuendo and nudity is completely unnecessary and adds nothing to the story. I was very taken aback that this HAD to be in the story. Once again, a perfectly good family movie (albeit for older children) is ruined by a disconnected and ignorant writer, director, producer. why does hollywood find this necessary? It only creates an awkward moment for parents and children. Of all the money spent on marketing and demographic, where is the market research on this subject? OK stepping off my soapbox. Movie section: As far as the movie goes. The stop motion is unbelievable. You will have a hard time comprehending how Selick and team accomplished what they did. And the textures and shadows created by the tangible medium cannot be matched with CG (I draw a similar comparison of the original star wars trilogy to the recent prequels. The magic and artistry of stop motion cannot be matched). There were a few choppy spots in the film (i.e. framerate) but perhaps it was a prob with our theater. The story is exquisite. it evokes thoughts of other stories of childrens' twists on reality (Alice in Wonderland, Wizard of OZ, Pan's Labyrinth) Here are my gripes: Character development is a bit rushed, but not so much you don't feel a connection with them. The story development is bit rushed also, but at the same time, the movie feels a bit stretched out at some points. All in all a great movie for adults and older children. Fans of Selick and the like will not be disappointed. Those not interested in the genre will be impressed with the technique, but the story will not change their opinions.

February 10, 2009