Visuals steal the show.
I don’t usually make a b-line to see anything animated, but this being a Wes Anderson film, I made an exception. I knew to expect extraordinary attention to detail and boy did I get it. Each frame has been painstakingly put together, as if you could press pause at any moment and it would be a work of art. The rest, though? Meh. Sure – it’s charming and quirky, but falls short on depth.
Isle of Dogs follows the story of a prefecture in Japan whose a leader who is hellbent on eradicating dogs, transporting them to an island of trash. His nephew Atari ventures to the island to look for his beloved canine companion.
The main pack of dogs in the story are voiced by a who’s who of the funnest actors around, including Bryan Cranston, Edward Norton, Bill Murray and Jeff Goldblum.
The story has a good flow to it, and has some amusing moments, but isn’t very touching or emotionally deep. I missed that extra element to pull at the heartstrings and make you care a lot for the characters. Moments where you ought to be concerned about their wellbeing end up being dull instead of being full of anticipation. I guess this stiffness is typical of Wes Anderson films, though – nothing out of the ordinary. I have given a higher rating on account of the gorgeous visuals and graphic design.
Isle of Dogs premieres in Sweden on 4 May.