Fantastic Mr. Fox

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(2009) ★★★

Film4: Sunday 12 July, 2.50pm

For the sake of his family, Mr Fox long ago gave up his chicken stealing ways. But he misses those wild old days. And he yearns to get back at the county’s three evil poultry farmers Boggis, Bunce and Bean. George Clooney is perfect voice casting for Mr Fox – sheesh, the man even sounds dapper. Meryl Streep has little to do as Mrs Fox (and nothing funny), while a couple of the other voices – Jason Schwartzman as their son, Bill Murray as Mr Badger – rub the film up the wrong way twice over: both of them emphasise that Roald Dahl’s charming story has not only been wholly Americanised, it’s also been given a precious Wes Anderson tweak. And what kind of rodent is Willem Dafoe’s Rat? He’s as big as the badger. The stop-motion animation looks good, though, even if the russet colour scheme makes England look like Kansas. The evil farmers all have British accents, of course. Michael Gambon’s Franklin Bean is, in fact, the funniest character in the picture. And it’s the way he talks that makes it so. He sounds precisely like the character Dahl wrote.

Certificate: PG

Duration: 83min

Other Showings Time & Date
Film4 Friday, 17 July at 7:15PM