Prof. Westengard | O628 | Fall 2022

Jyzbeth Vargas Week 9

There are a large number of gothic characteristics in the movie “Coraline”. Some of the characteristics include things that surround Coraline’s house like the fog, branches, statues, gates, and tall pillars. Coraline’s new house being in the middle of the woods also gives it some sort of a creepy, dark look. The doll that looks like Coraline is a gothic piece in the movie as it was made by the evil beldam (the other mother) to spy on Coraline while she was in the real world. Additionally, the little door is a gothic characteristic because it works as a “portal” for Coraline to get to the other world. The ghosts that help Coraline towards the end of the movie are also gothic, as they are spirits. Lastly, the other world, or parallel universe, is a gothic characteristic in itself. It is a dark place filled with evil, although it may not look like it at first. One similarity between Coraline nd the reading is that in the beginning, the speaker in the story is very intrigued by a house he hears about, the same way Coraline is intrigued to enter the little door when she first discovers it. Neither of them can contain their curiosity, and end up going in; Coraline goes through the little door, and the speaker enters the mad-house. Although they are both warned, they proceed to enter their places of interest. Another similarity between the film and the reading is that even though everything seems nice where they are, they are both hesitant at some point due to the fact that they can feel as though something is off. The speaker in the story states, “…but a long acquaintance with the metaphysics of mania, had taught me to put no faith in such evidence of sanity, and I continued to practice, throughout the interview, the caution with which I commenced it”. In a similar way, when Coraline visits the other world for the first time, she is presented with a great meal and a cake that says “welcome home”. She loves everything, but is very hesitant to stay longer, so she tells the other mother she will go to bed, choosing her words carefully as to not upset her. The beldam reminds me of the woman in “Carmilla” who would lose her temper easily when something did not go her way. She would be very sweet, but when she sensed something off, her character would change in an instant.

1 Comment

  1. Laura Westengard

    Welcome back to the blogs! This was a fantastic analysis of the Gothic elements of Coraline and an intriguing comparison between the movie and Carmilla.

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