The trailer for the 3D animated movie Coraline is out:
My thoughts? I hope that it'll make loads of money for Neil Gaiman (the author of the "Coraline" novel (and a former favourite writer of mine) who has a history of becoming involved in interesting movie projects that fail miserably, both in the financial and artistic sense), and it looks really nice - in that Nightmare Before Christmas puppet-esque way (Henry Selick is the director of both), but without all of the Tim Burton affectations that we've come to expect from it - which is very good. From the look of the trailer, however, it seems that the movie glazes over what was one of the more interesting things about the book - that for a book geared mainly towards kids, it was really fucking scary. The story created a sense of dislocation and dread, which, when combined with illustrations such as these
made it into an actual horror story, rather than just a light Goosebumps-like adventure.
As you can see from the trailer, this atmosphere doesn't really hold in the movie - it's more of a straight forward young adult adventure story. This might not be coincidental. I remember reading somewhere, perhaps on Neil Gaiman's blog, that the only ones who actually consider Coraline to be a scary book are adults who are trained to be uncertain as to how stories with horror elements end (perhaps she'll die, or be trapped forever, etc.). Kids, when they read Coraline, see it as a pure adventure story which will have the same ending all adventure stories have - the restoration of order and the triumph of good over evil. So perhaps the film-makers wanted to emphasize this perspective of the book, rather than the potential horror elements of it. Anyways, you be the judge.