10 Scariest Things About Coraline

Widely considered the closest thing to a real animated horror movie, Coraline quickly impressed viewers and became beloved by niche audiences for its unsettling animation style and macabre aesthetic. For this reason, the film was allowed to shine in all its creepiness and may not be suitable for young audiences due to its jarring plot and disturbing visuals.



RELATED: 10 Visually Stunning Horror Movies, From Suspiria To Coraline

With the fall season fast approaching, it’s time to reflect back on the dark fantasy film that boasts a cozy autumnal aesthetic and identify some of its most chilling aspects. In doing so, viewers who grew up equally enamored and horrified by Coraline can begin to understand why it continues to be so scary.

ten Wybie gives Coraline a doll that looks exactly like her

Globally, Coraline has a relatively mundane exposition as it follows Coraline as she struggles to adjust to her new home in Oregon and meets her goofy but endearing neighbors. However, the film quickly turns eerie when Coraline encounters Wyborne (“Wybie”), who randomly gifts her with a button-eyed rag doll that looks like her.

Since Coraline has no way of knowing that the rag doll was sent by the Beldam to spy on her and use this knowledge to become her perfect other mother, she is at first disturbed by the fact that the Grandmother Wybie’s mother had a doll that looked exactly like her – a yellow raincoat and all. The disturbing nature of the ragdoll is revealed later in the film.

9 A fleeting, unsuspecting flash foreshadows the other mother’s gruesome plan

While Coraline has nothing but good things to say about Otherworld for the first half of the film, several disturbing little details hint at the sinister reason why Coraline was drawn there in the first place. One such detail occurs as Coraline’s other parents celebrate her arrival.

RELATED: 10 Things You Didn’t Know About Coraline

As they celebrate, the Other Mother suggests a game of hide-and-seek in the rain; something Mel, Coraline’s mother, would never allow. Shortly after, a lightning strikes. While that in itself isn’t strange, the fact that the lightning bolt resembles Beldam’s claw-like hand foreshadows the harrowing events to come.

8 Coraline’s real parents trapped in a snow globe

Perhaps one of the most disturbing aspects of Coraline This is how the Other Mother traps Coraline in the Otherworld and will only allow her to leave if she manages to find her parents, who had been imprisoned somewhere in the house. Although Coraline has no idea where the other mother might be hiding her parents for much of the film, her sudden realization of their location can be shocking.

In this scene, Coraline has a brief flashback to a vision she had of her parents huddling together for warmth during a snowstorm. Upon closer examination, the fact that the other mother chose to hide Coraline’s parents in the snow globe is incredibly unnerving since the snow globe is one of Mel’s most prized possessions.

seven Mr. Bobinsky’s blue skin is more than just a design choice

Among Coraline’s eccentric neighbors in the Pink Palace Apartments is Sergei Alexander Bobinsky, an older and surprisingly acrobatic Russian who owns a circus of jumping mice. Besides his wiry mustache, one of Mr. Bobinsky’s most prominent features is his pale blue skin.

While many viewers assume his complexion was only meant to complement the film’s dark, muted color palette, it’s implied by the distinctive medal he wears that his skin turned that sickly color after helping cleanse Chernobyl nuclear waste in 1986. This detail may be more obvious to viewers who know Russian and can tell that the medal reads: “Participant in the clean-up campaign”.

6 The years on the candy jars in Spink and Force’s house match the disappearance of each ghost child

Although Miriam Force and April Spink are generally good-hearted and act as helpful voices throughout the film, one detail in their home has some pretty sinister overtones. When Coraline visits them after briefly returning from Otherworld, the older couple pull out their “special stash” of taffy bowls and give Coraline a Sight Stone to help her navigate the Otherworld.

RELATED: Coraline and 9 Other Kids’ Movies Way Too Scary for Kids

Each of the three taffy bowls is labeled with a year: 1921, 1936, and 1960. As fans are reluctant to believe those years are unimportant in a film full of hidden Easter eggs, many believe that the years on the taffy bowls pulls indicate when each of the three ghost children has disappeared.

5 The other mother has portraits of her three previous victims displayed in her home

Another detail that alludes to the sinister and cold tendencies of the Other Mother comes from the three silhouetted portraits in the Other Mother’s dining room. Although little can be seen of the physical appearances of the three portrait subjects, one can glean from their hair that the portraits depict two girls and a boy – a description that fits perfectly with Beldam’s three young victims.

Since this detail is relatively quaint and unassuming since it blends in well with the scenery of the Other Mother’s house, spotting it and realizing that a fourth portrait could have been made for Coraline had she agreed Beldam’s offer is all the scarier.

4 The Beldam left nothing to chance when he transformed into the perfect mother of Coraline

Considering the Beldam strove so hard to become the perfect version of Coraline’s mother, Mel, it’s no surprise that she considered all of the potential imperfections when shapeshifting to become the Other. Mother. So, in addition to encouraging Coraline to do whatever she wanted, the Beldam also took it upon herself to straighten out Mel’s crooked nose.

While such a minor detail is often overlooked when compared to Beldam’s more unnerving ways, like the way she casually bites off the heads of live beetles, it can be deeply unsettling to consider the extremes she was willing to go to. to gain Coraline’s trust. just to succinctly throw it away like she did with the three ghost children.

3 The scene where the other father chases Coraline through the magic garden

As the film nears its climax, it’s inherently much creepier since Beldam’s dark intentions, and the sinister hold on the Otherworld has been revealed. A frightening and tragic example is how the Beldam has complete control over the benevolent actions of the Other Father.

Since it’s obvious that the Other Father wants nothing more than to help Coraline, the scene where he chases Coraline in her mutant pumpkin form atop a mechanical praying mantis is even more unsettling. Much of this can be attributed to the Other Father’s stilted and scrambled speech that he only developed due to his efforts to help Coraline find her real parents.

2 The film’s disturbing, gibberish soundtrack

Since a soundtrack can essentially make or break a movie, it was relevant to Coralineto enhance its unnerving visuals while ensuring it’s not distracting. This balance has been cleverly achieved, and the film’s soundtrack contains an abundance of complementary songs, from the endearing welcome song. The Other Father sings for Coraline on haunting yet imaginative chorus tracks sung in gibberish language.

RELATED: 10 Animated Movies That Are Loved Only For Their Soundtrack

While such gibberish is quickly assumed to be meaningless, the film’s composer has encrypted a secret message in CoralineThe song “End Credits” which alludes to Beldam’s dangerous and true arachnid form. Translated lyrics include “Trapped in the Spider’s Web!” and “The witch will eat you too.”

1 Beldam’s true nightmarish form

Although there are many frightening elements of Coraline, each pales in comparison to the Beldam’s terrifying true form. Given that the viewer had grown accustomed to seeing the Beldam in the image of Coraline’s other button-eyed mother, seeing her in her true skeletal/arachnid form can be disconcerting.

As if Beldam’s true form wasn’t terrifying enough, the way she blindly but stealthily pulls up her cobweb just before Coraline hurriedly escapes makes her undeniably one of the most terrifying antagonists featured in a movie. animated film to date.

NEXT: 10 Scariest Movies Not In The Horror Genre

Comments are closed.