Review: Anomalisa (2015) and Don’t Think Twice (2016)
If you remember, I did retrospectives on either all the movies I saw in theaters last year or all the movies that came out last year that I didn’t get the chance to see. However, there were two movies I forgot to mention. It’s not that they were forgettable (they were both pretty good) but because, in trying to remember all the movies I saw last year, it was hard not to skip a couple by accident.
The first one I want to mention is Anomalisa. I saw this in theaters back in January 2016. In fact, I think it was the first movie I saw in 2016. It’s definitely not a movie for everyone but, if you like or can tolerate more artsy fare, it’s definitely an interesting watch. The movie uses some interesting techniques to show how the main character, voiced by David Thewlis, feels lonely and isolated in the world, including having mostly every character voiced by the person, as that shows that he feels like everyone blends in together. It gets even more interesting when he finds another girl, voiced by Jennifer Jason Leigh, that he does find intriguing, which having her voiced by someone different from anyone else really helps highlight. The character designs, with the ridges around the characters eyes, is a little weird at first but it kind’ve really helps show how broken and awkward the characters are. In other words, this definitely isn’t a movie for everyone but if you like movies like this, you like Charlie Kaufman, or you want to see more adult-based animation, I’d recommend it.
The second movie I’d like to mention is Don’t Think Twice. Starring Keegan-Michael Key, Gillian Jacobs, and an ensemble of other comedic actors, it’s about an improv group whose world is shaken down when one of the cast members gets cast on a Saturday Night Live-esque sketch show. The cast has good chemistry and it’s easy to root for these characters wanting to hit it big by being on this show. It’s also relatable-after all, who hasn’t wanted to become the top dog in their profession? If there are complaints I’d have about it, though, it’s that it wasn’t particularly funny for a movie about comedians, though I get the feeling they actually weren’t really trying to be funny, and the name for the SNL-esque show is a bit too much like Saturday Night Live for me (instead of Saturday Night Live, it’s Weekend Live). It does kind’ve seem like the screenwriters came up with the name of the show at the last minute. Otherwise, this was an enjoyable look at hitting it big in show business.
Now you might want to know, would these movies make my top 10? To that I say…maybe Anomalisa would replace Captain America at #9 and bump it up to #10. As for Don’t Think Twice, while it’s a good movie, it’s not quite Top 10 good but it’s not too far.
Of course, next month will be my first year anniversary on the site. Will I do a retrospective on what I’ve seen in theaters so far this year? I said I might not do it this year but I have seen more movies than I thought I would but I’m still not sure. We’ll see…