If it wasn't the technique of animation in stop-motion, allowing some narrative achievements like the articulation of the same voice for all characters other than the protagonists as a symbol of their indifferentiation, and this film would be at the same level of its "découpage " and fiction: an atrocious banality. Moreover, with a "indie like" philosophizing speech about loneliness that leads to indistinctness.
Stop animation generally guarantees that I'll give a film a watch-through. I'm nearly always impressed with the level of detail and this one is no different. It did feel jumpier than others I've enjoyed, but the models themselves were really well done - down to seeing a hint of a blue vein in a hand. I was initially bothered with the slowness, but felt it heightened the intimacy of conveying the mundane.
I can't think of a better metaphor for loneliness than everyone sounding like Tom Noonan (even the cast of My Man Godfrey). Weird, sad, paranoid, Buñuelian, beautiful, perfect in its own small way. Kaufman still idolizes ditsy women and has a fatalistic hang-up on life in general, but now he can admit it could just be him. These days, with puppets and Kickstarter, making a movie might be cheaper than therapy.
The creepy feeling we have, looking at these human-like animated puppets (or whatever they are) is deeply connected with the style of voice dubbing. It's the same realistic approach we see in "Dr. Katz, Professional Therapist". It emulates human speech instead of producing perfect dialogue. The most outstanding achievement, though, is the dystopian metaphor. Perfect story, surprising plot. Deep meaning. All good.
(1.5) un film raté au niveau de la mise en scène (& montage), mais que quand même réussit à s’élever un peu de l'insignifiance à partir de la séquence du rêve. Le scénario ressent trop l'origine radiophonique du texte, trop bavarde, qui est bien médiocre dans sa recherche d'un hyper-naturalisme. La technique (stop-motion) méritait un autre réalisateur, avec au moins une idée de plan, de rythme — de cinéma, quoi !
Charlie Kaufman is very lonely. It's a kind of loneliness he wants to share with you. And so he writes. Sometimes he directs too. And at least twice he succeeded admirably (ADAPTATION and SYNECDOCHE, NEW YORK). But with ANOMALISA, his usual grandiosities and yearnings feel...meagre. A few magical moments (the awkward sex and breakfast scenes) and Tom Noonan's peculiar voice keep the novelty from fading too quickly.
Could be one of the best American animations in years if it was just about love and loneliness. A shame that Kaufman burdens the viewer with an out of place pretentious sociopolitical subtext, and that Michael's mental condition instead of Lisa's singularity drive the narrative. Nonetheless, the dolls are essential—they're not a gimmick—along with Noonan's haunting voice acting in setting the film's unique universe.