Woodland creatures from your childhood move just 'Fantastic'

Spinnaker

OK, so get this. A movie, yeah, alright, a movie based off of beloved kid-lit writer Roald Dahl’s ink. And the story centers around one of the most celebrated woodland creatures of all time — a fox. All while trotting alongside this loveable redhead’s adventures, bluegrass, Beach Boys and Jarvis-Cocker-turned-campfire-folk marches into your ear canals.

I know, right?           

No, but really, too-adorable director Wes Anderson whipped up an engaging stop-motion film in “Fantastic Mr. Fox” that’s hard to complain about.            

The story, should you have missed the crucial childhood book of the same name, centers around this Ferris Bueller-type of fox (George Clooney) and his kin who brushes off most with the fact, “I’m a wild animal.” 

You see, back in his younger, more daring days, he made his living through “birds,” that is, sneaking into chicken coops and emerging with dead fowl. After discovering his foxy girlfriend (Meryl Streep) was with fox child (his), he hopped on the straight and narrow, switching careers and becoming a journalist (wahoo!).

Eventually, however, once relocated to a swanky tree house looking over a trio of particularly threatening farms, he gets the itch to start swiping again. 

He employs a partner-in-crime by way of a not-too-bright opossum (Wallace Waladorsky) called Kylie to embark on “just one last job,” that of course includes three parts, hitting the Bogus, Bunce and Beans’ farms.

The two execute such ridiculously clever measures to secure birds, only a cartoon fox could’ve dreamt ‘em up. 

Think: sleep-med-laced-blueberries destined for guard dogs.

The dialogue between Kylie and Foxy explodes like total, cuteness dynamite (“You’ve got to kill the chicken in one bite,” “I have different teeth from you! I’m an opossum! [pronouncing the ‘o’ in ‘opossum’]”).

Of course the good stealin’ times don’t last long before the vicious farmers (particularly the perpetually sloshed, ciderman Beans (Michael Gambon)) launch a revenge attack to obliterate the bird bandits.

A couple of stand-out characters I failed to mention include Foxy’s angsty pre-teen son, Ash (Jason Schwartzman) and Bean’s lowlife guard-rat (Willem Dafoe).

One might presume this movie takes place in England, judging from the super-Brit pubs and the farmers’ accents, but as the creatures’ dialects range from Midwestern American to Mexican-tinged Spanglish, there’s really no telling.

The constant movement of the creatures’ fur, as if some omnipresent fan aired them (but more than likely might just be a come-with-the-territory curse of stop-animation) and the disturbing inclusion of Mrs. Fox’s fox boobs (I have no sort of theory on that one), however, struck me as offsetting.Woodland creatures from your childhood move just ‘Fantastic’

Overall, ‘Fox’ affirms itself as a totally worthwhile flick to catch, whether you, too, are a wild animal or totally domestic.