Sunday, July 27, 2014

Wes Anderson

I'm starting a new section called "Featured Directors" where I will discuss my ideas on various directors. 

To start, I will focus on director Wes Anderson.

Recently I saw the movie The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014) with Ralph Fiennes, Bill Murray, and Jason Schwartzman, and directed by Wes Anderson. Like other directors, Wes Anderson frequently casts his films with familiar faces, included among them are Bill Murry, Jason Schwartzman, Luke and Owen Wilson, et al.

Until a couple of weeks ago, I had no idea who Wes Anderson was. I had seen Rushmore (1998) and The Royal Tenenbaums (2001) and a few other of his films. I liked Rushmore, I wasn't crazy about it, but I really didn't care much for his others.

Then I saw The Grand Budapest Hotel. I have to say, this was his best so far. I was introduced to the film via Comcast onDemand they've been promoting it for a couple of months and it looked funny so I decided to watch it. And it is great (Full review later). HBO has had three other Wes Anderson films onDemand:  Moonrise Kingdom; Rushmore; and The Darjeeling Limited; which I have since watched as well, several times. And I really like them. In addition, I found Hotel Chevalier (2007 short)  on YouTube. I think I need to watch that one again, because I didn't really like it much the first time. But what each one of his films share (at least the ones I've seen) is that quirky, deliberate sense of humor, sometimes awkward, but really funny. It makes the characters really stand out, and the films really interesting. Sometimes it's kind of subtle, but very well done, and tastefully classy. I've noticed that Roman Coppola, son of Francis Ford Coppola, and brother of Sophia Coppola. You can sometimes see a little similarity in films of Wes Anderson and Sophia Coppola. So it appears that Wes Anderson is "juiced in" or whatever the term is.

So far, these are the list of my favorites:

The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014) 
The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou (2004)
Rushmore (1998)
Moonrise Kingdom (2012)
The Darjeeling Limited (2007)
Hotel Chevalier (2007)
The Royal Tenenbaums (2001)