Not surprisingly, since this is a Gaiman story, Coraline manages to be cute and funny and creepy and fantastical all at the same time. (I should note here that I have not yet read the book (I know!) so this is just my take on the movie version.) Coraline's adventures start out rooted in an almost boring normalcy, but everything normal quickly begins to go haywire, until, by the end, it's almost hard to remember what normal life was like. There are sad moments and happy moments, and they're all in the proper places to make you leave the movie feeling satisfied, which is as it should be with this kind of story. There are also plenty of creepy scary moments, but in my personal opinion this doesn't make the movie un-kid-friendly. They're not moments full of blood and gore and guts; more along the lines of really satisfying ghost story-type creepiness.
As always, I enjoyed Gaiman's little references to various myths, including the reference to dowsing rods (although *of course* Coraline should have been more careful in what she used - hazel is the most traditional). :) I also enjoyed the clear "moral" of the story, so to speak, regarding being careful what you wish for, and how "normal" life might not always be what you're dreaming of, but it can be all the more precious for being real. A good things to remember, for kids and adults alike. (Particularly those of us who are adults but still enjoy daydreaming.)
The animation in itself was worth the price of admission. The characters are all very unique and well done (Coraline with her blue hair and little hat is cute as a (please excuse the phrase) button!) and several of the scenes, particularly when Coraline is in the Other garden or visiting the neighbors in the Other world, are just amazing in the amount of action and color bursting from the screen. Henry Selick (*please note Henry Selick, not Tim Burton, did this movie*) and co. did an amazing job. And as I said - the 3-D made it even better! (Speaking of the 3-D, Neil tells us that it will only be in 3-D for a little longer, and also that you need to search specifically for "Coraline 3D" to find the theaters showing it in 3-D. So now you know.)
In summary, Coraline is a great film, in character, story, and visuals, and everyone, old and young, should go give it a watch.
And now, for a final word: Thank you, Wonderful Neil, for providing us with yet another great story, but *no* thanks for giving me yet another thing to have an irrational fear of. Because of you, creatures with black button eyes will now forever creep me out. GREAT. ;)
After the movie, vwlphb and I stopped at Hole in the Wall Books, my favorite comic book and used book store, where I picked up my next round of comics and the new Deadpool poster, and shared some of my Comic Con adventures with Edie, who was delighted to hear them (and who also called me "the biggest Deadpool freak she knows," which, coming from a comic book store owner, may be either something to be very proud of or something to be very ashamed of. I'm not sure, as yet). I tried to obtain Wonderful Neil's Batman tale while there, but Edie declared that she's only selling them in sets, so I agreed to wait until the next issue comes out. I did obtain the next Cable, which I have not yet read, but I *can* say that it's the only one so far where I've actually enjoyed the cover - which is Tiny Messiah Girl dressed up in all of Cable's war gear. Heh. I also picked up my Obama Spider-man and some back issues of Runaways. So lots of reading to be done. Hurrah!
Speaking of reading, very exciting news here on the homefront. My sister has just given me permission to announce to the world that she has just become the eleventh winner of the Philbrick Poetry Award!!!!! Congratulations, sister-dear! The award consists of a cash prize and publication of a chapbook of her work this coming May, along with, of course, the excitement of having won the award. So happy for you, Jen!
In other literary-related things, I wanted to note that the anthology of horror stories that my friend ellen_datlow edited, Inferno: New Tales of Terror and the Supernatural, which I reviewed some time ago will be out in paperback on March 31. (I should also note that there's a special deal on the hardcover right now, such that it is only $9, which is a real bargain, if you prefer hardcovers to paperbacks.) Also from Ellen, the Nebula Award Showcase she edited will be out in April, as will Troll's Eye View, the middle age anthology she and Terri Windling co-edited. And Twists of the Tale, her cat horror anthology, is about to be released in a trade paperback by Wildside Press. So lots of good things coming out from Editor Ellen, who we are glad to have back here in the U.S. and recovering from her London hospital adventures!
And now, since I haven't mentioned The North American Discworld Convention here in a bit, I would like to announce that, at present, we have over 450 attendees registered as of February 1 (and Lee tells me he has a few more that have come in since then). This is great news, and everything with the convention is going along very, very well. Among other things, we have just added Bruce and Joann to our programming team - Bruce being the chair of the 2008 UK Discworld convention I attended in August, and Joann being his wife, who also helped with planning, along with doing the Discworld Chronicle. So they will be able to help us add a bit more British flair to our U.S. convention, which should mean even more fun activities for all involved. Hurrah!
(And as Vice-Chair, it is my duty to remind you all that membership prices may go up at the end of March, so don't forget to register!)
And now...back to work.
ETA: vwlphb just called me, and apparently the comic book store she went to today gave her some Coraline promotional stuff they had on hand - so she's giving me a couple of Coraline pins next time we meet. Yay!