Rated: PG for action, smoking and slang humor
Theatrical Release:Nov 13, 2009
Starring: George Clooney, Meryl Streep, Jason Schwartzman, Bill Murray,
Owen Wilson, Wally Wolodarsky, Michael Gambon, Eric Anderson, Willem
Dafoe, Jarvis Cocker, Helen McCrory, Wes Anderson
Director: Wes Anderson
Screenwriter: Wes Anderson, Noah Baumbach
Producer: Wes Anderson, Allison Abbate, Jeremy Dawson, Scott Rudin
Composer: Alexandre Desplat
Studio: 20th Century Fox
Fantastic Mr. Fox
Review by Jason Donner
There is something wonderful about
old-fashioned stop motion animation. Sure, you might count
things like The Corpse Bride or Coraline into that category, but when
I talk about "old fashioned" I mean the uneven and jittery OLD
fashioned stop motion before computers figured into the mix.
Stuff like the Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer special and the
Claymation Christmas. Seeing these kind of television
specials and movies are literally like seeing toys come to life and
the imperfections only add to their quirky charm.
Fantastic Mr. Fox, for example. Based on a book
I've never read, Fantastic Mr. Fox only benefits from being an
I am no fan of Wes Anderson's works
because I like to be entertained when I watch a movie, but this one
has got something special to it. While still boasting the cry
and sardonic dialogue of all of Mr. Anderson's opuses, Fantastic
Mr. Fox has a charm lacking in his other movies. Perhaps
it's just the fairy tale presentation or the charm of the rough stop
motion. Who knows? All I do know is that this movie about
a fox is my favorite of Mr. Anderson's overrated body of work.
But, oh... how I loved this movie.
It is everything that Mr. Anderson tries to be in all of his movies:
quirky, funny, and heartfelt. The vocal cast really nails it and
the characters are all crafted with superb attention to detail and
painstakingly animated bit by bit until they become living and
Fantastic Mr. Fox is a movie that
will speak across ages. Forget about this movie being aimed
exclusively at kids, this is a movie that has something to say to all
age groups about growing up, growing older, and growing outward.
I just adored this movie! The
characters are wonderful and you care about every single one, the
dialogue is clever, and the story is always entertaining. Even
the seemingly throwaway and clichéd subplot about the non-athletic son
trying to win his father's approval is done so well that it's a winner
when it had no right to be.
Wes Anderson's style and this joyously
cozy story are such perfect fit with each other.
Fantastic Mr. Fox is just fantastic all over and, while some of
the sarcastic dialogue and understatement might be off-putting, this
is hand down my favorite Wes Anderson movie in that I was entertained
and not put to sleep.