CHICAGO – The issue of gender identity, especially for those who are born with a vagueness as to what to call themselves between/beyond boy and girl, has come front and center in the U.S., both with the legalization of gay marriage and the callous repudiation of identity by trying to pass laws dismissing it (the North Carolina “bathroom” laws). The performance companies of The Living Canvas and Nothing Without a Company is currently staging “[Trans]formation,” which presents gender identity art by six performers, who perform most of the play in the nude.
Henry Selick’s ‘Coraline’ an Early Contender For Best Animated Film of 2009
CHICAGO – Henry Selick, the visionary director of “The Nightmare Before Christmas” and “James and the Giant Peach” has masterfully directed a mesmerizing journey into the world of imagination called “Coraline”.
Based on the beloved book by Neil Gaiman, “Coraline” is a nearly perfect stop-motion animated adventure featuring excellent voice work by Teri Hatcher, Dakota Fanning, John Hodgman, Ian McShane, Jennifer Saunders, Dawn French, and Keith David.
|Read Brian Tallerico’s full review of “Coraline” in our reviews section.|
Last year was an incredible one for animation with moving masterpieces like “WALL-E” and “Waltz With Bashir” and crowd-pleasers like “Kung Fu Panda” and “Bolt,” so it’s hard to say that “Coraline” would have been the best animated film of 2008, but it’s also easy to believe that we won’t see one better in 2009. It’s that good.
What immediately distinguishes “Coraline” is the creative team’s understanding that it is okay to honestly scare a young audience. Some of the best children’s fiction from “The Wizard of Oz” to Roald Dahl features genuine fear, something that modern filmmakers often forget. Selick and Gaiman are unafraid to send a shiver down the spine of their audience, children and parents alike.
Coraline (voiced by Dakota Fanning) gets a surprise in the stop-motion animated 3-D adventure Coraline, from LAIKA Entertainment for release by Focus Features.
Photo credit: Focus/LAIKA