the grand budapest hotel – what a nice surprise, bring your alibis

The Grand Budapest Hotelis Wes Anderson‘s latest cinematic endeavor. You guessed it, it’s about a hotel, a hotel in a fictional European mountainous area and the people that inhabit the hotel and it’s surrounding areas. The story takes place in the present, the sixties, and the war ravaged thirties… throw in wonderful music, awkward moments, intense short amounts of violence and colorful set designs and that’s it.

The good; it’s a Wes Anderson movie, you either know what you’re going to get or you don’t. But here’s something new, in a similar fashion to good Tarantino movies, we’re taken through this story in “parts” and different time periods, what works here is that Anderson’s able to make it fresh. How does he do this? He uses different aspect ratios to represent the different time periods. It’s subtle.

This movie is a love letter to old style architecture and more importantly, grand lavish hotels. Much like The Darjeeling Limited was his love letter to India, we get The Grand Budapest Hotel. It makes me want to visit old hotels, and how things used to be, everything that the sixties rejected and covered up.

There’s a chase scene in the snow… it’s ultra staged (fake), yet I found it increasingly enjoyable as the thrill of the pursuit continued. I don’t know why I liked this sequence so much.

Tony Revolori, as young Zero, does a great job. Bravo in finding this young talent. And there’s a lot of familiar actors in this film, simply stunning.

The bad; if I have to put anything here… I’d put there’s more swearing in this film than in previous Anderson films.
There’s also a lack of marketing, might be because this movie is in limited release at the moment.

Overall, I had a grand time. It was a fun ride for sure, and through all the emotions I was invested from start to finish. The symmetry wasn’t as overt as Moonrise Kingdom,yet it was still a feast for the visual arts in a different way. The Grand Budapest Hotel is neck and neck with Moonrise Kingdom for my favorite of Anderson’s body of work. In this day and age, Anderson is one who’s truly an auteur.

Fade out-


One comment

  1. Good review Eugene. Had a bunch of fun with this, as I believe Anderson had intended for me to do so. Just a shame it isn’t more emotionally-engaging as his previous features.

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