The Fantastic Mr. Fox: Wes Anderson Defiantly Ventures Deeper Into His Own Style

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  • on August 1, 2009
  • Filed in: Film

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With the release Wes Anderson’s The Fantastic Mr. Fox trailer he simultaneously released a declaration of commitment to his own vision. In recent years (first with The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou then more-so with The Darjeeling Limited) the critical establishment has began to sway against Anderson. The same  style he forged and developed with Bottle Rocket, hepatitis Rushmore and The Royal Tenenbaums was at the tail-end of a paddy-wack by a growing number of finks who claim that he has built his own stylistic universe that he rarely strays from. I could understand this attack on repetition of style if it wasn’t for one large footnote to consider:

HIS STYLE IS FUCKING SWEET.

That is an obvious opinion fashioned by my own past experiences so it’s entirely subjective, cystitis but it is very troubling to me when people complain about a filmmaker who makes the same types of movies when those movies are fantastic. To me it is painful to read condemnations of this “Wes-world” he has created when that universe is composed of touching scripts, fantastic performances by stellar casts and soundtracks that appear tailor-made to fit the top-tier art design and shot composition.

I am a fan.

This is why it greatly pleases me to see him try his hand at animating a Roald Dahl book. Here is the first taste of the footage:

This is the thought process I imagined Anderson had when deciding on this project:

So, they say I am a perfectionist who meticulously creates worlds instead of making one that feels true to life? Is that what they say? Do they want me to make a “real” drama? One with a handheld camera and a plotline that services at least three of the most current social issues? Hmm. Instead of doing that how about I get rid of humans. How about I create every movement of every character and fashion a set by hand so that the connection to your “reality” is even more tenuous than before and imagination and vision will run rampant. Will that work?

This probably doesn’t resemble the man’s thought process, I imagine Anderson just follows whatever inkling he has that inkles the strongest and doesn’t pursue projects as means for retaliation against unjust jabs at consistent greatness. Regardless, I’d like to believe it was intentional.

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