In the meantime, here is my review of Coraline. I remember buying the book when it came out, and was going to get it signed when Neil Gaiman came to Manchester on his book tour - however, I couldn't make it. Thankfully, a friend took my copy along with him. I think Henry Selick's film version is better - fuelled with so much creative inspiration and intelligent storytelling. One of the best films of my year so far.
The grotesque is something you really don't see in many children's films. Today's big successes - the Pixars, the Harry Potters - deliver broad chuckles, wide-canvas thrills and eye-popping visuals, yet in terms of depth, subtlety and pure imagination come up a little short.
Not to tie oddity with inspiration, but for all their well-crafted charm and brilliance, modern family classics such as Toy Story, or even Wall-E peddle a mundane sort of fantasy, lacking the expressive weirdness found in some of the best children's literature from the 19th and 20th centuries. Coraline, the new stop-motion 3D film from director-artisan Henry Selick, bucks this trend with admirable, awesome skill.
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