Roughly a year ago, I wondered, “What is Wes Anderson up to?” It had been a long time since 2014’s The Grand Budapest Hotel, a movie I love, and I wanted to see what kooky stories he’d delight me with next. I couldn’t have been happier when I found out he was doing a stop-motion movie about dogs starring Bryan Cranston. That’s pretty much one of the best things you can give Pablo. And Pablo is happy to report the movie is an amazing experience.
Let’s start with the animation. Anderson had ventured into the world of stop-motion before, with 2009’s Fantastic Mr. Fox, and his return is just as inventive, intelligent, and Wes Anderson-y as you’d expect. The dogs all move in their own different ways, the humans are perfect, and every time there’s a fight and all the characters get swallowed by the classic animation fight cloud of limbs and chaos, I had to chuckle.
The stop motion part of it is jaw dropping. I’ll include a video about the process of making this movie that everyone should watch. But the real jewel in this movie is a scene where we see sushi being made. It’s one of the most gorgeous things I’ve ever seen on the big screen. And it’s worth the price of admission.
But astounding animation alone is useless unless the story and the characters are good. And luckily, Anderson delivers here too. I have a soft spot for dogs, so I was always going to love this movie, but I thought its depiction of our furry friends captured everything we love about them as well as those few seconds when Doug makes his entrance in Up and states “I have just met you and I love you.” The movie just gets dogs, and any fan of them will surely have a great time and cry multiple times.
Speaking of crying, I did a lot of it during this movie. Most of it was dog-related, but the sushi-making scene made me tear up just out of sheer beauty. My good friend with whom I went to see the movie was basically shaking and vibrating the whole hour and forty-two minutes the movie lasted, and that’s a ringing endorsement if I’ve ever seen one.
Even if for some reason you’re on the fence about going to see this movie, you should still go experience it in theaters for the music. Last time Anderson and Alexandre Desplat worked together, Desplat walked away with the Oscar for Best Original Score, and he has a good chance of getting another one after creating another absolutely delightful musical landscape for the isle of dogs.
I absolutely loved this movie. If you’re a fan of Wes Anderson, of dogs, of good scores, of sushi, of stop motion animation, and/or of ridiculously talented casts, Isle of Dogs is the movie for you.
P.S. Have you noticed the fun thing about the movie’s title? It took me a really long time! If you haven’t, say it out loud and then bang your head against the wall for not realizing it before.
What did you think about Isle of Dogs? Bow wow down below!
Edited by: Kelly Conley