The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014) Directed by Wes Anderson
We are generally very big supporters of Wes Anderson and his movies here. He is such an original in this time of cinema. And he makes the world a little more bearable by putting everything so beautifully. Yes, he is also repetitive, a little like Woody Allen – making his own trademark once and once again – as Nick said the other day. But he is a visual mastermind. The other day I defended his movie making on FB by mentioning that surface is indeed content. Some people were saying that there is no 'serious content' in The Grand Budapest Hotel.
What then is 'content'? Does comedy by nature undermine the handling of any serious themes? Can candy colours gloss over and drown the deeper current? Do we always need to swim in the deep end? Anderson's characters in almost every movie he has made deal with depression, loss or looming loss, death, war, mental illness, difference and isolation. Yes, he coats everything with colour and there is always a brilliant line of cameos in his work, but calling The Grand Budapest Hotel superficial is plain wrong.
|Adrien Brody as the dastardly Dmitri|
It's not my most favourite Anderson film, like The Royal Tenenbaums or Moonrise Kingdom – maybe because TGBH lacks some strong and interesting female characters – but it's very entertaining and good in any context really.
It's Wes Anderson time again. I do love it. This time Anderson delivers a fable which possesses his usual themes: secrecy, trust, family, tradition, hearsay and love (amongst a dozen other things). Welcome to The Grand Budapest Hotel. His color aesthetic is as strong as always, set design ingenious, visuals arresting, these are all sumptuous minor miracles. He brings back F. Murray Abraham to the mainstream (it's been a long time since Amadeus, and oh the neglect) and more importantly reveals to the world that, yes, Ralph Fiennes does comedy and rather brilliantly thank you very much.
|Fiennes (centre) as Concierge M. Gustave|
|Jeff Goldblum (and cat)|