Written by / 4/11/2012 / No comments / , , , , ,

FANTASTIC MR. FOX

Clooney does the Fox
title: FANTASTIC MR. FOX
year: 2012
cast: George Clooney
rating: **1/2

Having grown up with the Rankin/Bass stop-motion animation, there’s an energetic dreamlike quality that brings back FANTASTIC memories when watching MR. FOX. Based on the book by Ronald Dahl, this unique fable centers on a classy group of human-like animals who forget they’re wild beasts. Except Fox, a dapper "family man" who can’t exist without exerting his true nature of stealing chickens from locals – three big farm/corporations owned by greedy cutthroats. The best scenes have Fox on stealthily missions with his dimwitted opossum sidekick: bringing chicken dinners home to his wife, teenage son and visiting nephew. George Clooney’s deadpan voice fits the character well enough (later on imitated by Bryan Cranston for Anderson's next animated feature ISLE OF DOGS); he doesn't falter when his wife (voiced by Meryl Streep) starts figuring the content of his moonlit excursions. It’s too bad the evil farmers also catch wind of Fox, making the last half a bit ponderous. When the bad guys move in, Fox Family and Friends tunnel into the sewers and eventually fight back against the bad guys, which sounds more exciting than it actually is. Director Wes Anderson lets his hipster-laden artistic side, which includes pointless jingles and relentless navel gazing, distract what began as a fun, lightweight adventure. Overall it's like being read a bedtime story but someone half asleep.
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