Plenty of films are released each year, yet most of them are throwaways made for the audience to sit back, watch for 90 minutes and have a good time. But a percentage of these movies are made by directors worth following. One of said outstanding directors is Wes Anderson. Anderson’s films are all full of stunning visuals, quirky characters and captivating camera work. Incidentally, I was looking forward to his next project: The Grand Budapest Hotel.
The Grand Budapest Hotel tells the story of the famous concierge M. Gustave (played by Ralph Fiennes) and his adventures with his new lobby boy, Zero Moustafa (played by Tony Revolori and F. Murray Abraham). With a cast of academy award nominees and winners, this Anderson flick pulls its weight in its troupe alone. And even the new comers, like Revolori, do a fantastic job. Yet among the A-list stars and big names there are two that shine brighter than the rest: Ralph Fiennes and Wes Anderson.
M. Gustave is a compelling character; he is a womanizer with an exclusive type of woman—rich, blonde, and old. Beyond his tastes in women, there is a sense of pride in Gustave’s work as a concierge for the Grand Budapest. His loyalty to his job is unquestionable. Fiennes manages to make an otherwise unlikable character into something enjoyable. He portrays Gustave with so much gusto that he seems to be having a blast.
Nevertheless, it is Wes Anderson’s directing style that really hits the nail in the head. All of Anderson’s trademark tricks, from the outdated look yet colorful environment to the use of symmetry in every shot, are all present in The Grand Budapest Hotel. The film is beautiful. It possesses the old timey feel that make all of Anderson’s films stand out.
However, The Grand Budapest Hotel is not all about pretty colors and engaging settings. In a way, it is a coming of age story for the character of Zero, which unfolds before a murder and the last will and testament of the victim. I was thoroughly entertained by everything this film had to offer, yet I’m not sure it is quite as good as Moonrise Kingdom. And even taking that into consideration, it still ranks in the top of Anderson’s work.