anomalisa interview

Anomalisa is one of those once-in-a-lifetime movies. It’s a singular experience, a stop-motion animated drama that slowly reveals why it could have only been told in this style. Simultaneously bleak and brutally honest and genuinely hilarious, directors Charlie Kaufman and Duke Johnson have made a movie that touches a nerve. Anomalisa is a stunningly made movie about ordinary people, a visual treat set in the most mundane setting imaginable, and a story that asks you to discover empathy for characters who are painfully human… despite being 3D-printed puppets. As of this morning, it is now an Oscar nominee for for Best Animated Film.

Since it topped my list of the best films released in 2015, I was thrilled to speak with Kaufman and Johnson as Anomalisa expands into more theaters this week. You can read the complete interview, and watch a new featurette delving into the making of the film, below.

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Charlie Kaufman Confessions of a Dangerous Mind

It’s not an accident Confessions of a Dangerous Mind wasn’t shown as last week’s Charlie Kaufman retrospective. Although the Anomalisa writer and co-director received sole credit on George Clooney‘s directorial debut, he had very little involvement in the film, and he wasn’t happy with the end result.

After the jump, read Charlie Kaufman’s thoughts on Confessions of a Dangerous Mind.

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Anomalisa character featurettes

Leave it to Charlie Kaufman to take what sounds like an ill-advised gag and turn it into one of the year’s most affectingly, heartbreakingly human films. Anomalisa is a romantic drama shot in stop-motion with a cast of puppets. But this isn’t Team America: World Police — Kaufman and his co-director Duke Johnson play it completely straight, giving their universe a relatively realistic look.

Anchoring this unusual presentation are two extraordinarily ordinary leads, Michael Stone (voiced by David Thewlis) and Lisa Hesselman (voiced by Jennifer Jason Leigh). A pair of Anomalisa character featurettes get up close and personal with the duo, and you can watch them after the jump.  Read More »

Do Not Miss This Charlie Kaufman Retrospective

Anomalisa

Are you a big Charlie Kaufman fan? Well, you should be, and if you are, you will not want to miss this upcoming Charlie Kaufman retrospective. The screenwriter behind Adaptation and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind has his sophomore directorial effort coming out soon, Anomalisa, co-directed by Duke Johnson. To celebrate its release, Paramount and participating Landmark Theaters are running a Charlie Kaufman retrospective.

Find out more about the event after the jump.

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anomalisa poster

At the risk of sounding like a broken record, Anomalisa is my favorite film of 2015 and one of the most unique and shattering experiences of my moviegoing life. Charlie Kaufman and Duke Johnson‘s stop-motion animated drama is a once-in-a-lifetime work of art. Cynical and beautiful and heartbreaking and hilarious, it is an enthralling, painfully human tour of the emotional spectrum. It’s the kind of movie that sinks its claws into you and leaves a mark. I was lucky enough to see Anomalisa at Fantastic Fest earlier this year and I found myself spending the rest of the festival thinking about, grappling with it, and trying to come to terms with what it had to say about its characters and their relationships. Few films pulverize your soul with such direct, expertly crafted force.

In other words, I couldn’t be happier to help premiere a new poster for the film, which casts a spotlight on David Thewlis‘ character Michael Stone. Check out the new Anomalisa poster after the jump.

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anomalisa trailer

There are still two months remaining in 2015, but I find it hard to believe that I will see a better movie than Anomalisa before the year is out. Charlie Kaufman and Duke Johnson‘s stop-motion animated drama is an unflinchingly real and achingly human masterpiece. It’s a beautiful recreation of what is feels like to fall in love and a bitter, black-hearted portrait of despair and mundane desperation. It’s about as perfect as movies can get. And it’s done entirely with puppets.

Watch the Anomalisa trailer after the jump.

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