Maybe it’s a coincidence that two gifted young filmmakers — Wes Anderson and Spike Jonze (both born in 1969) — have latched on to kid lit and puppets for inspiration in the same year — first Jonze with Maurice Sendak’s Where the Wild Things Are, and now Anderson, having artful fun with Roald Dahl’s Fantastic Mr. Fox and giving the film a palpable texture (fur and corduroy, who knew?) by utilizing stop-motion animation with the skill of a master. (Regarding the controversy that Anderson gave instructions from Paris while the puppets were being moved in painstaking increments on a London set: So what? Anyone who’s seen Bottle Rocket, Rushmore, The Royal Tenenbaums, The Life Aquatic and The Darjeeling Limited knows this movie has Anderson in its DNA.) And the decision to record the voice actors together on a farm in Connecticut instead of in isolated sound booths provides the film with a lively aural kick.
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