Wednesday, 1 April 2009

April fool

I received another package from Bloomsbury today. This time it was three copies of the Japanese edition of Uncle Montague's Tales of Terror. I had one advance copy of the book a while back, but I can't have enough of these: they look so great.

Neil Gaiman is so famous that people have been writing April Fool's pieces just about him. Check them out on his blog (listed on the left). The Guardian's April Fool was so lame this year that I wondered why they felt the need to bother.

Speaking of Neil Gaiman, Coraline the movie is out soon in the UK. I was looking at the trailer the other day and though it looks fun and seems to be very well done, it isn't weird like the book. I mean there are weird things in it, obviously. But the way it is done is not weird in itself. Coraline had a brilliant nightmare feel about it. I'm not sure this movie is going to do that justice.

I think I was seeing something much more like Jan Svankmajer's Alice in my head. Although I can readily accept that it would not have been a very commercial way to go. . .


  1. Hi Chris
    I love Jan Svankmajer's 'Alice'. I saw it first around January 1990 or thereabouts... I can remember that it was serialized on BBC2 at lunchtimes for a week. Very strange. I love that Svankmajer gave the story a nightmarish and claustrophobic atmosphere, with the animated stuffed animals (especially the white rabbit with the popping-out eyes) and skeletons and the close ups of Alice's lips saying "said Alice".
    I really liked Coraline too, but mainly for the amazing scenery (I loved the garden) and puppet design. The 'making of' documentary is worth watching if you get it on DVD.
    Best wishes

  2. Jan Svankmajer is a genius - an absolute genius. His work is genuinely nightmarish. My problem with a lot of modern fantasy is that it is too obvious and safe. I don't think that was true of Coraline the book, but I think it was true of the movie. I would have loved to see it filmed by someone like Svankmajer or del Toro.