Director: Henry Selick
Writer(s): Neil Gaiman, Henry Selick
Cast: Dakota Fanning, Teri Hatcher, Jennifer Saunders
Awards: Nominated for Academy Award and Golden Globe for Best Animation
Running Time: 100 Minutes
A young girl walks through a secret door and discovers a parallel reality that is eerily similar to the life she already knows, yet deeply unsettling in a number of ways, in director Henry Selick’s animated adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s international best-seller. Eleven-year-old Coraline Jones (voice of Dakota Fanning) is fearlessly courageous, and perhaps far too adventurous for her own good. Coraline and her parents (Teri Hatcher and John Hodgman) have recently relocated to Oregon from Michigan. Bored in her new home since her parents are distracted by work and she has yet to make any new friends, Coraline passes the time by exploring her new neighborhood with an annoying local boy named Wybie Lovat (Robert Bailey Jr.). But after paying a visit to her eccentric neighbors Miss Spink (Jennifer Saunders) and Miss Forcible (Dawn French), a pair of aging British actresses, and crossing paths with the outright weird Mr. Bobinsky (Ian McShane), the precocious young girl becomes convinced that her new surroundings are just as dull as she’d initially suspected. Shortly thereafter, Coraline discovers a hidden door in her new house, and decides to investigate. Venturing into the eerie passageway inside, Coraline emerges into an alternate version of her own reality. At first glance, this strange new world seems even better than the real thing; there her parents aren’t distracted by work, and Coraline is always the center of attention. There’s even a mysterious Cat (Keith David) that’s fascinated by her every move. But when Coraline’s button-eyed Other Mother (also Hatcher) attempts to make her stay permanent, the frightened young girl must summon her resourcefulness and bravery in order to find her way back home and save her real family.
“A gift to imagination.”-David Denby, New Yorker