••• The International Writers Magazine: Film Review
Isle of Dogs
Written and Directed by Wes Anderson
Sam North review
witty, charming, a grand visual treat
Being a long time fan of quirky Wes Anderson movies I was a tad reluctant to go see Isle of Dogs. I had been undewhelmed by Fantastic Mr Fox and stop frame animation in particular (except Wallace and Gromit) but I love dogs and anyone who can make an animated movie about a dog hating Japanese Mayor expelling all the dogs to a nuclear waste filled island to die is going to have to either have a heart made of stone or have a lot of explaining to do.
It seems all the dogs have developed something called snout fever and there's a suspicion that the disease has been generated by the cat loving Mayor's scientists. Goodbye dogs forever is the Mayor's rally cry. Swiftly delivered by crate to the island the poor dogs are abandoned with no food and not expected to live. We follow the adventures of a small pack of dogs and luckily for us they speak English (which might be why the Japanese don't understand them). Only one small boy, The Mayor's adopted Ward, Atari (Kunichi Nomura) seems to miss his dog Spots so much he is willing to do something about it. He steals a plane and crashlands on the island to find him. The other dogs agree to assist him although there is some initial dispute about this from Chief - the stray.
||Isle of Dogs is funny, charming, visually stunning and despite the grim topic poetic and bound to generate a few tears as well. You don't even notice the clouds are made of cotton wool as the dogs go on a long journey to rescue Spots chased by vicious robot dogs...
Atari is joined on his quest by Duke (Jeff Goldblum), King (Bob Balaban), Boss (Bill Murray), Rex (Edward Norton) and a stray Chief (Bryan Cranston). Not fogetting the sexy Nutmeg (Scarlett Johansson).
A total delight with a great environmental message.
© Sam North April 20th 2018