Summary of “Wes Anderson’s cultural tourism undercuts the heart of ‘Isle of Dogs'”

Wes Anderson’s Isle of Dogs has something to say about the ugly allure of xenophobia, the sin of standing by while atrocities are committed, and the importance of protecting the most vulnerable members of society.
Isle of Dogs takes place in a near-future dystopian Japan, where the fictional city of Megasaki has just passed an ordinance exiling all dogs to Trash Island – ostensibly to stop the spread of disease, but really just because Mayor Kobayashi has it in for the entire species.
If there’s some reason Isle of Dogs had to be set in Japan, if there’s something specifically Japanese about the story Anderson is trying to tell or the message it’s trying to send, I don’t know what it is.
Isle of Dogs seems to go out of its way to remove its Japanese trappings from their real-world context.
Watching Isle of Dogs, it’s hard not to think that the U.S. is maybe the last country on earth that should be preaching about how awful it would be if the Japanese carted off an unfairly maligned American-coded population to an internment camp.
Up until Tracy appears, Atari is the closest thing Isle of Dogs has to a relatable human character.
Isle of Dogs insists on the humanity of its dogs at the cost of the humanity of its humans.
In treating Japanese culture like superficial embellishments, Japanese people like unknowable others, and Japan itself like an endearingly quirky playground for yet another white American narrative, Isle of Dogs’ messaging about protecting the vulnerable falls flat.

The orginal article.