Wes Anderson’s genius: “Isle of Dogs”, Eye’ll Grab Ya

I’m no artist, but a few times when I’ve attempted to draw or paint a person’s face, I’ve noticed, even in my lame limited effort how striking you create eyes to be. Wes Anderson surely knows and it’s the eyes of all the characters in Isle of Dogs that are so riveting.

In addition to not being an artist, I’m also not a dog person. HOWEVER, at my grandma’s 95th birthday party (Go Florence, Go Florence!), I fed a visiting dog a carrot (after being encouraged by its owner that he liked such food) and out of a circle of 8 folks, my lap was then chosen for the pup’s nap. Guess I should write a parody book, “If You Feed a Dog a Carrot” (rip off of “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie”). My point is, if a dog is sweet and calm, I could be convinced to own one.

My second point is, due to the eyes of the dogs in Wes Anderson and Roman Coppola‘s (yes, son of that Coppola), I could have teared up, that’s how good this movie was.

But as Wes Anderson (and perhaps Roman, too) is want to do, he often goes one step too far in making his plot so darn intricate, that I lose the wonder and awe of his creativity to say, ‘ok, enough’. It could be a gender thing, sorry men. Often men go one step too far, one too many text messages, one too many comments to impress, tickling a minute too long where I want to scream, “OK, enough!” I always think of the Billy Joel song, “Leave a Tender Moment Alone,” (aside: am listening to a live version on YouTube right now and damn, can I just say I love Billy Joel) or as a tried to tell someone recently, just stay on the boat, stay on the boat (aka don’t go overboard).

I can forgive Wes Anderson though, the guy (AND Roman) are true geniuses and while if you looked at the basic story structure of Moonrise Kingdom and Isle of Dogs and would find the same basic core story, because he dresses it in such a new funky outfit, it’s fantastically novel at the same time.

I should mention some of the stand out voices in this stop motion animation: Bill Murray, Ed Norton, Jeff Goldblum, and Bryan Cranston, all of whom I’ve had a crush on at one time or another. And for the gents, you have Scar Jo’s sultry voice as the show dog named Nutmeg. So how can you go wrong? Go See Isle of Dogs, it’ll warm your pet loving, or even loathing, heart.

Anomalisa: Marc Maron Podcast Recommended as a Preview

Definitely go see “Anomalisa”, but first, listen to Marc Maron’s WTF podcast with directors Charlie Kaufman and Duke Johnson. Then, you’ll have more appreciation of the stop animation craft. Every minute of the film took one week to shoot which breaks the record for difficult actresses (AND actors, step down ladies).
http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=anoalisa&view=detailv2&qft=+filterui%3alicense-L2_L3_L4_L5_L6_L7&id=218F3A4F6CC0D700E9EB67A53410B2A52EBADACE&selectedIndex=7&ccid=HL6vKiwW&simid=608039732148833508&thid=OIP.M1cbeaf2a2c16003e839f507a836ec7bfo0&ajaxhist=0

Was it “A Masterpiece” as one of the poster quotes foretold? Ah, no, BUT it was a contender. What’s missing is the following: As stated previously, unless you precede the film with a 10 minute documentary about the process, no normal American is going to understand the art work needed to achieve this film. (I really should have been in marketing and P.R. My other big tip of the week would have been a shoe to Trump’s groin when he said he wanted Sarah Palin to endorse him, “What are you crazy?”)

The other difficulty with Anomalisa is that there’s got to be a scene left out between Michael Stone’s re-connection with his old girlfriend and his shower scene. My guess is he called an escort service OR assumed his old girlfriend had second thoughts and come up to his room. Without either of those scenarios, the film lacks a continuous thread. If a character is suddenly mentally ill, his or her untrustworthiness is a significant flaw.

So maybe ‘Masterpiece’ should be changed to “Highly Admirable” because even though the film lacks story, there is something incredibly human about the eyes and skin of the claymation figures. Or perhaps that’s more of a depressing statement of how plastic real humans have become. Certainly the message is spot on since many men (or women) can spend countless Saturday evenings together (or even one special one) and discard the other human interacted with like a disposable tissue. The character Michael Stone wasn’t able to communicate, like so many humans who prefer to be mum, resulting in a passive aggressive expiration of human connection.