Wednesday, December 2, 2009

The Wonders Of "Fantastic Mr. Fox"

This is one of the topics we'll be talking about on our weekly podcast tonight, so be sure to check it out by going to the link on the right hand side of the page.
Last night, Grant and I got a chance to see the new Wes Anderson film "Fantastic Mr. Fox," based on the story by the great Roald Dahl.
If you're not familiar with his work, perhaps these titles will ring a bell: "Charlie And The Chocolate Factory," and "The Witches" are just two more of the late author's stories.
We're lucky, because Anderson decided to bring this movie to life using a technique that has all but become extinct when it comes to motion pictures. He and his crew put it together using stop motion animation, meaning you take a picture, move the character a tiny bit, take another picture, and so on, until you get something that looks like it's actually moving in front of your eyes.
The results are, well, fantastic, and the behind the scenes work is truly fascinating.
Check out some of the work that went on to make this movie by watching below.

Many "mini documentaries" have been put together on all of the work that went into the project.
As is true with his live action work, Anderson assembled an all star cast for the voices that includes George Clooney, Meryl Streep, Jason Schwartzman, Willem Dafoe, Bill Murray, Owen Wilson, and others to play Mr. Fox, his family and friends.
Over the last couple of days I watched an interview with Wes Anderson that appeared on Charlie Rose. You can see it on, just search for Wes Anderson.

You might think that this movie is just for kids. Not so. I would recommend it for all ages--it holds up well, and there are plenty of laughs for the whole family. While I don't think it will suit everyone's taste, the visuals alone are enough to keep you asking, "how'd they do that?"
And while it might not be the CGI-fest that "2012" is, Wes Anderson and his team of experts have proven they don't need computer animation or even 3D to make this work, and work well.
He has expressed interest in doing another movie in the same way, and I hope he does in the not too distant future.
If you do miss it on the big screen, be sure to check out "Fantastic Mr. Fox" when it comes to DVD sometime next year.

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