Friday, November 20, 2009

Movie Review: Fantastic Mr. Fox

 I'm not sure how cool it was to have this song playing during this scene. Seems a little dark. (Yes, I'm joking.)

Wes Anderson’s (Rushmore, The Life Aquatic) long awaited adaptation of Roald Dahl’s children’s novel, Fantastic Mr. Fox, opens in wide release next week.  With witty dialogue mixed with the charm and nostalgia of classic stop-animation, Fantastic Mr. Fox is a silly, smart, sweet and truly fantastic tale of existential angst.  Slightly irreverent and touching on some adult themes, it still retains oodles of kid's appeal, though it’s probably the adults who will have the most fun.  Beautifully understated, muted, even drab landscapes are inhabited by exceptionally voiced and meticulously crafted characters. As Mr. Fox struggles between his wild animal urges and the demands of being a "domesticated" family man, the film maintains a loose and whimsical tone despite the years of planning and production that went into it.  Music, composition and tone keep it firmly in Anderson's oeuvre, but stop-animation combined with a sophisticated contemporary script elevate it from retro homage to something very special.  Fantastic Mr. Fox is simply wonderful.  And the animals wear clothes and have cell phones, and that is always fun.