Coraline by Neil Gaiman
When a little girl goes exploring behind a locked door in her home, she ends up in an alternate world with a button-eyed “other mother” who wants to keep her there.
CORALINE DISCOVERED THE DOOR a little while after they moved into the house.
After reading Gaiman’s Stardust, I figured I’d better have a go at his other popular book-to-movie — one which I haven’t seen before, basically because in the puppet stop-animation that’s used, even the non-creepy characters look kind of creepy:
What I liked: Well, it was definitely creepy and imaginative. I liked Coraline’s character — she was clever, determined, and smart.
What I didn’t like: Parts of it seemed to move slowly, and other parts were a little too simplistic. Although it was definitely creepy, I never felt like she was in any real danger; she seemed to have the situation pretty well under control and seemed to take it all in stride, which probably isn’t a particularly realistic reaction.
Heads up: Some major creepiness
Stardust by Neil Gaiman
A boy leaves the mundane town of Wall on a quest for a fallen star in a fairy world.
There was once a young man who wished to gain his Heart’s Desire.
I normally am adamant about reading the book before seeing a movie. However, when I’d seen Stardust years ago, I had no idea it was based on a book, much less one by such a well-known and much-lauded author. I’ve been telling myself for years that I’d read the book because I loved the movie, and well, I finally got around to it.
What I liked:
This is a classic adventure tale, with fairies and talking trees and whimsical things that aren’t as they should be and I love the amount of creativity and imagination that went into it. It’s been compared to Princess Bride (another book I have yet to see because I love the movie), and I enjoyed both of these 2nd-world fantasies (though this one is really more magical, and more of a portal fantasy than anything else).
What I didn’t like:
Someone correct me if I’m wrong, but I recall the movie having more humor. I *know* there was more involved in the story of the lightning pirates and the relationship between Tristran and Yvaine. Basically, I was ruined by seeing the movie first, as this is one rare case where I really did like the movie better.
Heads up: This book would receive even stronger ratings than the movie’s PG-13 rating for its sex scenes and graphic/gory violence.