The girl's parents are preoccupied with their work, and they haven't got free time to dedicate to their girl, that's why she starts the adventure of exploring the new home alone. She finds a small door blocked by bricks. The same night, an unusual mouse, with buttons sewn in instead of eyes, wakes her up. Coraline starts following the strange little animal and in this way discovers a secret passageway behind the mysterious door, which leads to a world parallel to her own, the so called Other World.
There the girl meets unusual counterparts to her parents, who look almost identical to her real ones, except that they have buttons sewn in instead of eyes. They take her on a tour through the Other World which is a lot more luxurious than the real one, even the house in the Other World looks more beautiful and more appealing. Kind "other parents" organise a party because of her arrival, they treat her with most delicious food, take her to a magnificent magical garden and give her all the attention they believe she misses in the real world.
More and more often Coraline visits the Other World. Even the neighbours are interesting there, she likes playing with them and with the other improved version of young Wybie. The black cat, which in the Other World has the ability to speak, at one time informs the girl that her "other mum" and the whole new world are just a big trap, which is meant to lure children who feel neglected by their real parents. Coraline refuses to believe that story. However, when "the other mother" offers her to stay in the Other World, and all she needs to do in return is to sew her eyes with black buttons, things become clearer to her. She refuses to do that and demands to go back to her real parents immediately. It causes great rage of her "other mother" who turns into an unusual lengthened caricature, and as punishment she locks the girl in the small room behind a mirror. There, Coraline finds the spirits of three children who had been trapped by "the other mum" before her, and who had lost their eyes, and at the same time their souls because of her.
With the help of friend, "the other" Wybie, Coraline manages to escape into the real world, but she finds out there that "the other mother" had kidnapped her real parents. With the help of the black cat and the magic stone, which she got from the old actresses Spink and Forcible, Coraline returns to the Other World and rescues her parents and children-ghosts who were trapped behind the mirror. Even though her parents are finally free, and they don't remember what had happened to them, and children who were locked long time ago continue with their real lives, Coraline realises her mission is not entirely accomplished. She knows "the other mother" will try to take her back. That's why she decides to throw the key of the Other World into a well. In the mean time, "the other mother" comes to the real world and attacks the girl in order to get hold of the key. Luckily, Wybie comes to rescue and after a short fight he sets Coraline free. Together they throw the key into the well and in that way end connection with the Other World forever...
It is interesting to mention that the part of mother/"the other mother" was voiced by Teri Hatcher, Golden Globe winner for the role of Susan Mayer in the TV series Desperate Housewives, while the legendary British actresses Jennifer Saunders and Dawn French, famous for their authorial TV show French&Saunders, gave their voices to the unusual neighbours of little Coraline.