Written and directed by Wes Anderson, and boasting a cast which includes Bryan Cranston, Edward Norton, Bill Murray, Jeff Goldblum and Frances McDormand, Isle of Dogs is a stop-motion animated movie featuring, yep, you guessed it, dogs! Set in Japan (in a dystopian future), the story focuses on a little boy searching for his lost dog on an island filled with nothing but canines.
Isle of Dogs arrives in US cinemas next week, before opening in the UK a week later. The film has already been the subject of press screenings, which means there are plenty of reviews doing the rounds, and today on It’s A Stampede! I’m going to take a look at what’s being said.
Below are six review snippets about Isle of Dogs. Before you dive right in, you might like to know the general consensus is very positive.
Here’s what the critics said:
- Jonathan Romney of The Guardian, called Isle of Dogs “scintillating stop-motion” and awarded the movie four stars (out of five). He said: “As with much of the director’s work, you shouldn’t expect a huge emotional payoff, and the one-liners are often as dry as Bonio. But this hugely enjoyable package shows an indefatigably fertile imagination letting rip in inimitable style – and packing an eco-themed, antibigotry message as well. You can rest assured, Anderson ain’t selling us no pup.”
- Nick De Semlyen of Empire also awarded Isle of Dogs four stars (out of five), calling it a “fun and fresh-feeling experience.” He said: “By far an odder proposition than Fantastic Mr. Fox, it’s not exactly for kids, not exactly for adults, but surely pretty much everyone will find something to love. Unless you’re a cat — cats are going to hate it.”
- Geoffrey Macnab of the Independent also served up a four star review, commenting: “Wes Anderson’s latest is quite the treat.” He said: “Anderson is clearly a dog lover himself and his film is bound to appeal to anyone who shares his passion.”
- The four star reviews continued with Andrew Collins of Radio Times calling Isle of Dogs “a stop-motion delight”. He said: “It feels wholly, idiosyncratically unique, while paying affectionate homage to sources ranging from film-maker Akira Kurosawa and ukiyo-e woodblock print artist Hokusai to the children’s animations produced by Rankin/Bass (and made by Japanese artists) which will be familiar to American TV viewers in the 1960s and 70s, when Anderson was a boy.”
- Julian Roman of MovieWeb was also a fan of Isle of Dogs, calling it “a must see for anyone that appreciates good filmmaking and originality.”
- And finally, Guy Lodge of Variety, said: “Wes Anderson returns happily to animation with a Japanophilic canine adventure that is richly imagined, drily witty and, finally, barking mad.”
So, there you have it – Isle of Dogs is one to watch.
For more review round-ups of recent releases, check out past editions of The Great Stampede which have focused on Tomb Raider, Ready Player One, Love, Simon, A Wrinkle in Time, Annihilation, The Shape of Water and Black Panther.