Good Monday everyone! How are we all? I am drowning in deadlines, but my library door is always open, so I can’t forget about you all! I’ve been with Seb (@sebonthesilvermountain) this week, and we decided to have a date night. Both of us wanted to see this movie, so after a very filling Wetherspoons we toddled down to his local cinema and cuddled up to watch. Wes Anderson is one of our favourite directors; we both loved The Grand Budapest Hotel and I really liked Fantastic Mr Fox. So, without further ado, here’s our thoughts on Isle of Dogs!
Isle of Dogs is a stop motion animation, with an all star cast. Set in a dystopian near-future Japan, the film follows a young boy who goes in search of his dog after the whole species is banished to an island due to an illness outbreak… and the fact that everyone likes cats more. The prologue explains the downfall of dogs and the uprising of cats – dogs were only saved by the daring deeds of a young samurai.
The film is split into acts, four if I remember exactly. Most of the film takes place on an island of trash, just off of the coast of Megasaki City, Kobayashi. The humans speak in their native tongue, and are translated by interpreter, machine or subtitles. The dogs have been pre-translated – it highlights the struggle between man and beast when trying to get them to play fetch. As I said before, it’s got an all star cast. The main dogs are played by names like Bryan Cranston, Ed Norton and Scarlett Johansson, whilst there are human characters played by the likes of Frances McDormand.
Overall, I really really enjoyed this film. Like every second of it. I felt like I learned something about the culture of Japan, I found it to be a respectful depiction of such – it wasn’t being forced upon me that this was correct. It also brought up the idea about being environmentally friendly – Trash Island isn’t exactly a sustainable solution. I think it shows Anderson’s worry for the future, a dystopian world who’s leaders get rid of the things that they hate through mass cullings. It shows that if people band together, they can make things better for everyone – and the epilogue shows that. I won’t spoil it for you, you need to go see it for yourself.
The only qualm I had with it was that the man in front was so tall (or I was so short, either way) I struggled to see over his head. It made me remember why I disliked going to the cinema on a regular basis.
Have you seen Isle of Dogs? Do you want to? What’s you views on it’s portrayal of our future? Do you believe we’re heading for a dystopia? What about it’s portrayal of Japan?Leave a comment down below!
[Header Image: Isle of Dogs, Searchlight Studios, 2018]