Isle of Dogs Review

26 Mar

Wes Anderson is a very consistent filmmaker, but this is unfortunately one of his weaker efforts because he makes a structural miscalculation that renders the film inert for large portions of its runtime. Namely, his continued focus on the subtitled humans gets old after a few scenes, and aside from a hilarious sushi preparation sequence, those entire sections of the film feel dull and largely pointless. I get why they’re part of the script, but I have a huge problem with the execution of the themes and the ways in which the human storylines undercut the character development of the dogs. Anderson could’ve easily said everything he wanted to say, political or otherwise, without resorting to using the humans as mere dispensers rather than natural embodiments or expressions of certain ideas. Gerwig’s character in particular is a grating mess, and the film’s third act completely loses any of the tightness, emotional resonance, or childish wonder that Anderson brought to some of his other films.

He certainly brought it to the first act of this film, which is extremely promising for a long period of time. The world-building is immaculate, the production is flawless, the stop motion is beautiful, and the voice acting is great. It has wit and a special kind of energy to it. It in fact has a good thing going with its “boy and his dog” storyline. Disappointingly, a lot of that gets stopped in its tracks so many times throughout until the film sputters to the finish line. By trying to do too much, it does too little in the places that count. Sometimes the best world-building is in fact less expansive and more fleshed out from a specific perspective. Lots can be revealed through the eyes of talking dogs, but the film is simply too distracted to realize that.



One Response to “Isle of Dogs Review”

  1. MovieManJackson March 30, 2018 at 9:52 pm #

    Damn. There’s something that just hasn’t interested me from the jump with this movie. Hope to catch but my excitement is muted.

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