Title: Isle of Dogs
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Director: Wes Anderson
Starring: Bryan Cranston, Koyu Rankin, Edward Norton
Runtime: 1 hr 41 mins
What It Is: When Mayor Kobayashi (Kunichi Nomura) of a Japanese commonwealth Megasaki City has banned all canines to a former trash island. When his ward, young Atari (Rankin) seeks to find his guard dog Spots (Live Schreiber) who’s his best friend. Following a crash landing on the island and with the help of a pack of dogs lead by stray Chief (Cranston), even if he says there’s no leader. With their help, they’ll try to find Spots and foil the sinister plans of Atari’s uncle.
What We Think: Anderson playing once again in the stop-motion world was awesome! I’m a big fan of The Fantastic Mr. Fox and this film has a similar charm. Anderson’s methodical style is prevalent in every frame of the picture. Tristan Oliver’s deft cinematography works rather well with Anderson. All of the voice acting is just spot on. I love the fluidity of each of the acts. I suppose that’s worth mentioning that the film has a four-act structure. Each playing into the overall narrative and doing so quite well. I don’t think they’ll be a time when I don’t enjoy Anderson’s attention to detail and meticulous devotion to his craft.
Our Grade: A-, Thus far in 2018 Anderson’s latest stop-motion masterwork is tops for me. If I can recall correctly I don’t think anything else as sniffed an A of any sort. I had such a fun time with this. Its witty script, its fun narrative, and once again Alexandre Desplat’s score is just so good. A refreshing film that breaks the year’s mold of rinse and repeat. Fun, funny and smart enough to keep you interested. I’d caution parents in taking their children as it probably won’t keep their interest. Huge recommendation.