This is one of the best delightfully creepy movies out there. I had the pleasure of reading the book before seeing the film and I think both are fantastic.
From a studious point of view, I’m blown away by the impossible craftsmanship that it takes to make stop-motion animation films. As I was doing storyboard studies, I noticed there is very little blur, if any, in sequences. Each frame is meticulously perfect.
In this post, I’m going to highlight two specific things that really stood out to me – the transitions and angular compositions.
There was a particular transition near the beginning that was really neat.
There are a lot of sideways or off-kilter things within the film and it almost seems to make a point of itself. I assume that this was to keep the audience a little thrown off – they feel something is not quite right, but can’t quite figure it out. A sort of impending doom as Hansel and Gretel eat the candy house. This transition sets that weird tone for the rest of the movie.
There are so many compositions with a slight angle.
I also love the overhead shots – similar to the ones Hitchcock used in his films, presumably to increase suspense and pressure on the main character. Look at how the Other Mother is visually above Coraline in the frame above. So cool!
Speaking of the main character, Coraline herself has a strange angularity in her design. Her nose is slightly curved. I noticed this while doing storyboard studies.
What are some of your favorite things about this film? I am always intrigued by anything involving Neil Gaiman. His stories always inspire me, both in writing and visual storytelling.
Stay tuned for another fun, weird cinema studies next week!