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Wes Anderson - 11/6/2008 11:57:16 PM   

Posts: 2811
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: chester
Brilliant or formulaic?

i'm not sure anymore. Bottlerocket, Rushmore and Royal Tenanbaums, all great films. i recently watched Life Aquatic, and enjoyed it as well (after watching it a while ago and being completely indifferent) and just now, i've watched Darjeeling Limited. I noticed a pattern in his work, and it detracted slightly from my enjoyment of the film. minimalist directorial style, kooky events, a bit of Bill Murray, and some nice music. thats pretty much most Wes Anderson films..i feel like i'm being tricked into thinking they're great because everything looks and sounds so lovely. but then again i could probably watch all his films back to back and have a great time.. i don't know...

any thoughts?


"Now i don't know much about security lighting, but i'm guessing they'll be using 180-degree dispersing halogens with motion sensors"
Post #: 1
RE: Wes Anderson - 12/6/2008 12:57:58 AM   

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Joined: 26/11/2006
I like his films that I've seen (Only have to see Darjeeling Limited and Hotel Chevalier ...), but I do a get a strong sense that some day I'll find his work repetitive and annoying (Not that there aren't already moments in his films that are reptitive and annoying). I didn't get very excited at the prospect of Darjeeling Limited for example and I haven't bothered seeing that yet, so maybe already I'm getting wary.Though his films have charm and personality, he's not a director that seems like he'll make an awful lot of progress, and more and more he'll seem formulaic. Hopefully I'm wrong though!

< Message edited by Lydia_H -- 12/6/2008 12:58:42 AM >


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Post #: 2
RE: Wes Anderson - 12/6/2008 8:21:08 AM   


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Joined: 12/10/2005
As I've said before, Wes Anderson is a man who makes comedies that are (supposedly) too intelligent to be funny.

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Post #: 3
RE: Wes Anderson - 12/6/2008 9:23:33 AM   

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From: Outpost 31 calling McMurtle.
Completely agree. His films use whimsy and oddball quirks in a way that's as calculating and predictable as Michael Bay uses sunsets.



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Post #: 4
RE: Wes Anderson - 12/6/2008 12:59:06 PM   

Posts: 2811
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: chester
wow, i was expecting a lot of love for him.. i think his first 3 are genuinely solid films, and i do think they're really funny - but DL and life aquatic seemed to be the same film in different places. but i didn't dislike that particularly.. i dunno..


"Now i don't know much about security lighting, but i'm guessing they'll be using 180-degree dispersing halogens with motion sensors"

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Post #: 5
Wes Anderson - 12/6/2008 11:47:36 PM   


Posts: 29
Joined: 6/10/2005
I cant believe theres no more Anderson fans! i love his films. I think people just shun his films because hes been crowned some stupid moniker like "king of quirk" or something. His work is absolutly brilliant. And so what if he uses similiar shots, not like hes the only one! It annoys me that he doesnt really get enough critical appreciation when lesser 'indie' films like Little Miss Sunshine gets Oscar Nods.

and for the record, Darjeeling Limited and The Life Aquatic are not similiar

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Post #: 6
RE: Wes Anderson - 14/6/2008 2:04:30 PM   
evil bill

Posts: 6784
Joined: 19/7/2006
From: mordor/ uk

ORIGINAL: matty_b

Completely agree. His films use whimsy and oddball quirks in a way that's as calculating and predictable as Michael Bay uses sunsets.

Very much so,i've given up on this director making anything worth while,i'm sure he has his oddball fans out there but i'm not one.


"You listen to me now,i will find you and i will kill you!"

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Post #: 7
RE: Wes Anderson - 15/6/2008 2:11:20 AM   

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Joined: 2/6/2006
From: Enemies of Film HQ
Well I like him. I'd rather watch one of films over a Micheal Bay one any time of the week.



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Post #: 8
RE: Wes Anderson - 16/6/2008 12:29:20 PM   
Jackie Boy


Posts: 1139
Joined: 2/1/2006
His quirky styling's not gonna be to everyones taste, but what he does he does very well. Any comparisons to Bay are rediculous, Anderson's an extremely competent film director, Bay isn't, fact!


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Post #: 9
RE: Wes Anderson - 26/6/2008 6:08:31 PM   


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Wasn't too impressed with the Dajeering Limited, sort of touch over old ground and really copped out at the end, the characters were a bit of a mixed bag for me also.  Still had it's moments and was better than the Life Arqtic.... his worse film to date, while for me Rushmore and the Royal Tenenbaums are his masterpieces.

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Post #: 10
RE: Wes Anderson - 28/6/2008 7:06:48 PM   


Posts: 304
Joined: 12/11/2005
He's a brilliant writer, director and producer.
I like him very much a wish their were more like him.
He has a nack of getting interesting performances from actors and a keen eye.
I can appreciate why some dont like him, there is no bang for your buck with a Wes Anderson film, but his films have moments of sheer genious on a dramatic level. In my opinion he has not made a bad film yet.

(in reply to ElephantBoy)
Post #: 11
RE: Wes Anderson - 1/7/2008 1:40:53 PM   


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Joined: 13/4/2006
At this stage I'm still a fan, it's just that his last two films have been far to light for me.  On a different note really enjoyed the short film which was shown with the Dajeering Limited.  His next film will be key for me.

(in reply to kdawg)
Post #: 12
RE: Wes Anderson - 1/7/2008 3:43:30 PM   

Posts: 151
Joined: 28/2/2006
From: Norway
I think Wes Anderson's films are superficial and all the characters he writes are behaving like cartoons. I've seen Rushmore, The Royal Tenenbaums and turned off Life Aquatic... a couple of minutes into the film. These films are easy to watch, because they offer me nothing but stereotypes of characters in cool clothing which Wes Anderson wants to reach me with, showing their vulnerable sides during cheap verbal humor and unstoppable jukebox music in order to not  'bore' me. Yet I AM bored because there is nothing beyond what I see. Wes Anderson insists on making me feel for the characters by music and watching charismatic movie-stars play unusual roles. In The Royal Tenenbaums, I find it difficult to distinguish between Ben Stiller as himself  and Chas Tenenbaum which is a copy of all the typical roles he plays. This is a film about family, but after viewing it I am much more uncertain if Wes Anderson says something I have not seen in other family-films about parent and children relationships, I feel for example Mike Leigh's family portraites gives me much more to think about and feel for than Wes Anderson's gallery of weird/blown-up personalities. I'd rather watch something from Fellini for this type of humor's sake.

Anyway, what does the word 'quirky' mean exactly, that everyone uses so gently in this thread?

(in reply to ElephantBoy)
Post #: 13
RE: Wes Anderson - 1/7/2008 4:56:12 PM   

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Joined: 26/11/2006
It just means unusual and unconventional, all the characters must have their little quirks so they stand out from everyone else.

Quirky Indie film are abominable when they're trying too hard to find identity (Little Miss Sunshine for example ), and Anderson's films walk a fine line. But generally I think there is an honesty and nonchalance in his filmmaking which means for the most part they feel natural, even if the blueprint for those kind of films is there and isn't really open to any significant adjustments. I suppose there are other films which have a negative impact on Anderson's work because quirkiness is becoming increasingly sterile and predictable

Leigh is definitely a different class of director to Anderson though


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Post #: 14
RE: Wes Anderson - 3/7/2008 1:48:02 PM   


Posts: 9030
Joined: 13/4/2006
As John Peel would say there's two types really good and bad, his early films were good, his most recent not so good.

(in reply to Lydia_H)
Post #: 15
RE: Wes Anderson - 3/7/2008 3:54:52 PM   
JJ Holiday

Posts: 403
Joined: 4/10/2005
From: Baltimore
I think that he is brilliant to be honest, producing works that are original, earnest, and effortlessly enjoyable.

Rushmore is my favourite of his films. Comprising of a brilliantly inspired love triangle, that is joyfully realised with some great acting and writing. The sub-plots and supporting cast also are deftly handled. The marriage of comedy and tragedy is a fine art to attempt, and at times in this little film it's incredibly poignant. Seymour Cassell as Max's father is just a joy to behold.

The Royal Tennenbaums is lovely also. A brilliant musical comic of redemption and family, I believe this to be one of his more complete works, everything seems just right. Although the seen with Luke Wilson in the bathroom is brilliantly jarring from the rest of the film (in terms of lighting/music/tone/acting) in a way that makes it all the more affecting.

He may not reach for some grandiose poetic heights with some warbled, willowed actress barking for an Oscar in each one of his films. But just because something isn't said very loud does not mean that something isn't said at all. Furthermore, as a director of actors I think that he is as good as it gets right now. Adrian Brody in The Darjeeling Limited turned out one of my favourite performances in a long while, and Hackman's Royal Tennenbaum will also live long in the memory.


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Post #: 16
RE: Wes Anderson - 5/12/2008 6:04:30 PM   
Mason Verger

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Interview: Wes Anderson from


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Post #: 17
RE: Wes Anderson - 28/10/2009 2:27:15 AM   


Posts: 3
Joined: 22/1/2008
I think most things I could say in defence of the mighty (shhh) Wes have been said in this thread already but... Rushmore and The Royal Tenenbaums were, in my opinion, things of absolute beauty. Although maybe that description in itself says a lot about why I enjoy them; his visual style, soundtracks (yeahh, I know everyone's already said it). But not even just that - I find his humour extremely funny, and think some of the performances he teases out of his actors are just brilliant. Jason Schwartzman's Max in Rushmore was the best thing he's ever done by a long shot - haven't seen him shine as much in any of his other films, although I've still enjoyed 'em. A little thanks to Anderson, perhaps?

And yeah, I guess the whole 'odd/dysfuntional family/characters' thing is a very much recurring feature, but hey, I think it works for him, and how many other directors out there seem to re-use formulas that work?  At least if you don't like the stories, I don't see how you can't at least appreciate them aesthetically - as I said, I find them things of beauty when I watch 'em.



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Post #: 18
RE: Wes Anderson - 2/11/2009 3:05:24 PM   


Posts: 9030
Joined: 13/4/2006
I'm starting to have the feeling that FMF is the film will turn me off his work.  FOr him it's an intresting choice, but i have a bad feeling going in, if he pulls it off, it will go so way in marking him out as a geunis.

(in reply to rielala)
Post #: 19
RE: Wes Anderson - 4/11/2009 11:45:28 AM   
Rich Empire


Posts: 900
Joined: 6/12/2005
From: London
Ok, I haven't seen all of his films, but I'd like to think I've given him a fair chance.
I liked Rushmore alot. And I liked the music used in the Life Aquatic.
However for me personally ever since The Royal Tenebaums, I personally haven't really found his films very rewarding.
In fact more annoying and perplexing.
On occasion they really feel like someone's just trying to make a cookey Coen's film like the Big Lebowski with larger than life "oh so krazy" characters.
The rest of the time it just strikes me a pretensious thumb sucking emo bullshit.
It's as though people stick up for his films to pretend that they are in touch with themselves and are really deep and emotional people. Often using replies like:

"Like, let's all just sit down and think about this man..."
"It says so little and yet so much...."

I did however quite enjoy The Dahjeeling Ltd, but yet again what the hell was the point of that short before it all?
Total self indulgence!
Oh and I did like his American Express ad. Funny!
: )

He's not talentless, but please he's really not worthy of some of the gushings that people give him.

Right ranting over, I'm going to go and sour some milk now.


The Dude abides...

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Post #: 20
RE: Wes Anderson - 4/11/2009 9:02:05 PM   


Posts: 1294
Joined: 11/7/2009

Love the guy. I think he makes some of the most captivating flicks with some of the most endearing characters you could want in a film. I actually loved The Darjeeling LTD and any film with Jason Schwartzman is gonna rule.

(in reply to Rich Empire)
Post #: 21
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