Anomalisa is written by Charlie Kaufman, directed by Charlie Kaufman and Duke Johnson and stars David Thewlis, Jennifer Jason Leigh and Tom Noonan. It follows a British writer called Michael Stone as he travels to a hotel in Cincinnati to deliver a speech at an event there. However, whilst staying at the hotel, he meets Lisa, a woman whom he instantly falls in love with due to her unique flare and original personality. Honestly, I want to start by saying this film is fantastic. It was one of my favourite releases of last year, even though I only saw it in the cinema in March 2016. It oozes with genius at every moment, never faltering or missing a beat. Heres my take on Anomalisa.
First of all, the stop motion animation style is incredibly appealing, blending puppetry with claymation in a useful and interesting way, and using the animation to its advantage. The voice acting is also impressive, with expressive but realistic vocal work that made me feel like the characters were truly human. What Charlie Kaufman does with voice actors is also a stroke of sheer intelligent brilliance here, but you have to see the movie to understand, as I will not spoil it here.
The character of Michael Stone is one of the most interesting of any 2015 film. We see the whole flick from his destroyed and distorted view of love and humanity, and the movie continuously echoes this idea until the viewer feels like Michael does, alone and empty in a world where he is surrounded by people who love and admire him. The movie makes us understand just how isolated he feels, and it makes for heartbreaking viewing. On top of this, the character of Lisa is also very interesting. The whole idea of her is that she is that one person who, for Michael, differs from everyone else, and the movie does a great job at getting this point across by adding tiny mannerisms and fantastic dialogue for the character. This makes the interactions between the two characters all the more compelling and truly naturalistic.
The script here is phenomenal. With his script, Charlie Kaufman provides a modern look at life and relationships whilst also mixing this with elements of old filmmaking styles that would have been more commonly seen decades ago. The best thing about the script, however, is that it is so damn original. It stands alone and sets itself apart from other modern films to create an excitingly different atmosphere and actually give us something that is like barely anything that has come before it. On top of the script, the direction, editing and score are all masterful and provide more and more pros for the film.
Now this review has been naturally very quick, but this is simply due to the fact that one should go into this movie blind. This was a movie I had seen trailers for, but knew barely anything about, and I was thoroughly and thankfully surprised by every genuinely clever and unpredictable plot point that came my way. The films message was one that you slowly grew an understanding of in your head throughout until it got to a point where you were purely blown away by the ideas presented. Overall, the film is one that more people need to see to understand it's brilliance, and I can certainly that if I had seen it earlier it would definitely be in the top end of my 'Top 20 of 2015' list. It is a short but sweet film with large ideas that are presented in a mind-blowing way, creating an overall flawless piece of pure cinema.
So what did you think? Have you seen Anomalisa? Did you enjoy it? Make sure to let me know in the comments and if you enjoyed this review make sure to come back for more like it in the future or check out the other reviews on my profile, including one for Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice, at http://moviepilot.com/garwoodreviews.