Isle of Dogs: Wes Anderson’s fable is characteristically off-beat and charming; the story, peculiar as it may be (and in spite of the decision to have most human dialogue play without subtitle) is very engaging and touching; the many characters are all relatable in their quirkiness, loyalty and love (even those that are not fully understood, which shows their strength). It’s also thematically relevant without being too heavy-handed or overt about it. The voice acting is spot on: it has conviction on its low-key (except when that’s not what is called for), and all the famous voices are very recognizable and build distinct characters; Bryan Cranston, by virtue of how the narrative goes, owns the voice that comes out on top, but Frances McDormand, Edward Norton, Liev Schreiber, Harvey Keitel and Scarlett Johansson, to name just a few, also leave on their impression. The film is visually endearing and masterful: the dog models are all lovingly made, easily distinctive; the framing and camera movements, as usual, are precise; the whole world design by Paul Harrod and Adam Stockhausen is beautiful, distinctive. Alexandre Desplat’s musical score (which is inspired by Japanese scores in its use of drums) is very fine.