Fantastic Mr FoxMikey 2 comments
Before I start this review, let me say for the record I unequivocally love Wes Andersons' movies. My two favourites are and , but I honestly couldn't decide which I rank over the other.
So here we have Andersons' latest, Fantastic Mr Fox based on the Roald Dahl children's book of the same name. The film is entirely a stop motion effort with most of the usual cast from his Andersons' previous films, lending their voices are Bill Murray, Jason Schwartzman, Owen Wilson, Willem DaFoe and first time Anderson movie participant George Clooney as Mr Fox.
The story is about the life of one Mr Fox and his family. Long since retired as an expert chick catcher, Fox now lives a regular married life as a family man with a child. But the thrill of his past life is too much to ignore, and he secretly gets back into his old habits by stealing from the three neighbouring farms.
It's not too long before the farm owners start to fight back and Foxs' luck begins to run out, putting both the lives of his family and other neighbouring wild animals in danger.
This is basically an comedy adventure movie but like every other Wes Anderson movie the real story is with the characters. However this unfortunately is where I think FMF falls over. I'm not sure why. Maybe because it's hard to get a sense of any real emotion from stop-motion puppets? I can't put my finger on it.
Anyone who has seen Life Aquatic, Tenenbaums or even The Darjeeling Limited will no doubt appreciate or at least acknowledge the complexity of the characters and how they interact with each other. I didn't get any sense of that in Fantastic Mr Fox, and can honestly say I found it difficult to care for any of the characters well-being.
Stylistically the movie has Andersons' signature all over it, and is easily recognisable even in the stop motion format. The settings are fabulous and the characters are well animated.
That said, it's not a bad movie, but it's not a great movie either. Curiously it's gained amazing critical acclaim already and at this time of writing even has 93% on Rotten Tomatoes, so clearly I'm in a minority here. Which is a shame because I went into the cinema with the right attitude and really wanted this to be amazing.
So when all is said and done I am a little disappointed with Wes Andersons' latest offering, and would much rather have seen him deliver another extraordinary story surrounding the lives or ordinary quirky people.