The Grand Budapest Hotel has the distinction of being the only fun film nominated for Best Picture this year. The film is a whimsical and funny story of how a lobby boy came to own a hotel. Its not only beautiful to look at but the characters are likable and interesting, some would say a huge improvement over Wes Anderson’s previous films.
Wes Anderson is one of the few current American director who has a consistent vision and style. He is the definition of an auteur. He has a directing style people love, hate or just don’t get. His quirky characters and centered framing have been mocked and lauded.
I’ve always been a fan of Anderson’s even if I haven’t always liked his films. The Grand Budapest Hotel has all the key aspects of a Wes Anderson film but the more straightforward caper story has made this his most popular and highest grossing film of his career.
Ralph Fienes and Tony Revolori as M. Gustave and Zero, respecitvely, are a joy to watch and they bring a lot of heart to their central friendship. The film is a story in a story in a story of The Grand Budapest Hotel, in the fictional Republic of Zubrowka. With a murder, a stolen painting, a war, young love and a jailbreak, you’d think the story would get muddled but it just gets more delightful with every twist and turn.
There are too many famous actors in the film to name but Tilda Swinton as an unrecognizable elderly woman and Adrien Brody as her mustache twirling bad-guy son are hilarious.
The Grand Budapest Hotel is actually quite violent and has serious undertones that add depth to the film without weighing it down. You’ll watch it the first time for the impeccable costuming and set design but keep going back for the great characters, fast-paced plotting and the feeling of odd comfort that this fully realized world of Wes Anderson will bring.