Michael Stone (voiced by David Thewlis), left, and Bella Amorosi (voiced by Tom Noonan) in "Anomalisa."
Paramount Pictures via AP
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Painstakingly crafted over more than three years with occasional appeals for crowd-sourced financing, the stop-motion animated film "Anomalisa" was, ironically, the easy movie for screenwriter Charlie Kaufman.Starburns Industries, a stop-motion animation outfit formed for a "Community" special, approached Kaufman in 2011 about turning it into an animated film.While Kaufman struggled to find traction for his other projects, the slow toil of stop-motion proceeded.The resulting film is one of the most original movies of the year, a regular of top-10 lists – including this writer's – and year-end honors. "Anomalisa" is itself a rare exception. In a culture that drifts toward uniformity, this film is uncommonly human, written by one of movies' great enemies of conformity. Kaufman, 57, is arguably the most renowned screenwriter of a generation.Whereas most animation is compelled by fantasy, Johnson was excited by the mundane of "Anomalisa". It was a new world for Kaufman, but he's well acquainted with the film's wry customer service backdrop.It's easy to see in Kaufman's movies a great fear of homogeneity: Malkovichs everywhere, Noonan's voice all around.
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