‘Isle of Dogs’: An animated film for adults

Wes Anderson’s latest soars on real humor and heart

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Separating a boy and his dog is a dangerous idea, but always makes for good entertainment. Isle of Dogs is an animated film that is best suited for adults-and it’s a wonderful time at the movies. First, let me tell you a little bit about the movie.

Writer/director Wes Anderson’s latest explores the lengths at which a 12 year old boy named Atari (Koyu Rankin) will go in order to find the dog assigned to protect him, Spot ( voiced by Liev Schreiber), who was dumped on a island by his vicious uncle. Mayor Kobayashi (Kunichi Numora) fears that his city is becoming saturated with sick dogs (infected with a flu-type virus), so he signs an order that pulls every single dog out of their homes and assigns them to an abandoned island. Thus, the isle of dogs.

In a film stock full of political satire and inside jokes, it’s best to appreciate the little things, because this film has so many wonderful details. Continue reading “‘Isle of Dogs’: An animated film for adults”

‘Last Flag Flying’: Road trip film with heart, humor, and pathos

Without preaching, Linklater’s film has a subtle power and lightness

What if I told you there was a road trip film about three Vietnam buddies that would make you laugh out loud as well as make you feel something?

Richard Linklater’s powerful ode to veterans young and old, Last Flag Flying, is that movie. A film that gets the job done by throwing three great actors together in a car and watching the sparks fly. Instead of pouring melodrama over the experience, Linklater and co-screenwriter Daryl Ponicsan (who wrote the novel the film is based on) go for the lightness that is often trapped in a dark situation.

Larry “Doc” Shephard (Steve Carell) has a mission ahead of him that ranks higher on the toughness scale than anything he did in Vietnam 30 years ago. He has to bury his 21 year old son, who has just perished in the war in Iraq. In order to keep it together, he recruits his Vietnam veteran buddies, Sal Nealon (Bryan Cranston, stealing every scene he’s in) and Reverend Richard Mueller (Laurence Fishburne). The only problem is, these men haven’t seen each other in decades, but that’s what the ride is for. Continue reading “‘Last Flag Flying’: Road trip film with heart, humor, and pathos”