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Author Topic: Wes Anderson's new one
The Moral Animal.
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It's unlikely to win over any non-fans, but I enjoyed the trailer:

The Darjeeling Limited

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jason voorhees
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zzzzzzppppp (Sound of the zipper being zipped on my lips.)
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The Moral Animal.
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Hehe, let rip jv.

Anderson's films are strange - I can see exactly why people wouldn't like them, but I always end up loving them all the same.

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goldstone97
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I can see exactly why some people would like them, but I always end up hating them all the same.
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jason voorhees
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Not a fan. To say the least. Opposite of Inca. Many discussions in the past.
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Inca
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quote:
Opposite of Inca. Many discussions in the past.
Yes. JV reads news of a new film and zips his lips, while I start wiping the drool away from mine.
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Reed
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What goldstone97 said, although I did like the one about the family of geniuses, whatever that was called.
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The Horse
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As OTF’s self-appointed Number One Wes Anderson Fan, I have to report that The Darjeeling Limited isn’t up to much.

It starts well, with a prologue billed as a “short film to be shown before the main feature”. It’s a two-hander between Jason Schwartzman (as the same character he plays in the film proper) and Natalie Portman (who isn’t in the main feature), set entirely in a Paris hotel room. He’s in the familiar Anderson early mid-life crisis, and she’s clearly the cause, but during ten minutes of stylised dialogue we never quite discover why. What we do get, though, is all Anderson’s directorial tics flourishing within this new style, as he adds sexiness to his usual formula thanks to a commanding performance from Portman. The shot where Anderson pans across the room to find Portman leaning on the sideboard, nude but for her white socks, made me drop my popcorn. Anderson also puts a twist in his habitual reliance on 60s/70s guitar pop by giving the piece an ironic-or-is-it soundtrack: Peter Sarstedt’s Where Do You Go To (My Lovely), in its entirety, twice.

The film itself, initially, seems like a return to form after The Life Aquatic, which was fine as a curio but not the sort of indulgence you can really get away with twice in a row. Owen Wilson is as funny as ever in a similar role to the ones he played in The Royal Tenenbaums and The Life Aquatic (overbearing but vulnerable, mysterious), while as his younger brothers, Jason Schwartzman is all grown up since Rushmore as an oversexed wannabe novelist, and Adrien Brody is a fitting addition to Anderson’s repertory, with his cartoon depressed-raven face that does all his acting for him. The trio’s relationship is skilfully, understatedly drawn via a series of comic set pieces, and the setting, a long train journey in India, allows Anderson both to enjoy a radical change of scenery, and to pull off some nifty manoeuvres when cooped up in the boys’ sleeper car.

After a while, though, two things become apparent. First, the brothers’ story isn’t really going anywhere. Almost every scene is superb on its own without being essential. It’s as if Anderson and his co-writers, Schwartzman and Roman Coppola, were so (justifiably) pleased with their creations that they couldn’t stop coming up with “Wouldn’t it be cool if . . .” moments, and then couldn’t bring themselves to edit enough of them out to give the film any real emotional impetus. This feeling, that The Darjeeling Limited is an impressive but pointless exercise, is exacerbated by its second problem: this is Anderson’s second film since his masterpiece, The Royal Tenenbaums, but he still can’t let go of those trademark moves. If anything, his technical trademarks (bright colours, actors in the dead centre of shot, the camera pivoting through 90 degrees exactly, slow motion, the Kinks and Stones on the soundtrack) pop up more frequently than ever and are actually irritating. Cameos by Bill Murray, Kumar Pallana and Anjelica Houston confirm that this is just The Tenenbaums On Holiday.

When the brothers get off the train the film collapses, losing what focus it had and becoming a complete shaggy-dog story. The ending was so inconsequential, I’ve clean forgotten what it was. Anderson's given his fans plenty more of what they want, but after a while people stop wanting what they wanted before. Or at least, they want a real film to go with it.

[ 04.01.2008, 21:07: Message edited by: The Horse ]

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Inca
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They showed Hotel Chevalier before the movie? It was originally just a free download on iTunes.
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The Horse
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Yeah, from what I can gather it was there if you saw Darjeeling at festivals, then in was on iTunes but not in US theaters, then it was off iTunes and back with Darjeeling. I'm glad I saw both; it was the best bit, and without it the references to Schwartzman's "ex-girlfriend" would be a bit odd.

Have you seen Chevalier/Darjeeling?

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harrycaul
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quote:
The Tenenbaums On Holiday
Now this I like.
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mafu
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Havent seen this yet, probably because i saw the trailer and thought it would be pretty much as the Horse describes it. and because i was a bit pissed off by the life aquatic and really wanted to see him try something else rather than just tread over the same ground (albeit in a superficially different setting)

he's now working on an animated fantastic mr fox i believe. whatever happens there, (and i'm apprehensive about what he might do with it) i think a change will do him good, if only to give him some breathing space before tackling another feature. I can't believe that people he knows and respects haven't pulled him up yet and told him to do something other than try and rehash the same film each time.

ps - third film since the royal tenenbaums? did i miss one?

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The Horse
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Oops, no you didn't.
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mafu
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okey doke. also - do you really see the royal tenenbaums as the masterpiece? i get more and more drawn towards rushmore myself.
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The Horse
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Yeah, I do - especially in terms of what I was talking about up there. When his style was fresh it was amazing, and that's where it peaked. I just get the feeling that Tenenbaums was the film he always wanted to make, and now he's made it he's a tiny bit lost.

Tenenbaums v Rushmore is a bit like a band's second album that they made after they got big, which has got orchestras and stuff on it vs their cheaper-sounding debut. Some people will always prefer the debut album. (I know Anderson did Bottle Rocket before them both but that's quite different and spoils the analogy, so let's ignore it for a sec.) I think Rushmore and Tenenbaums both succeed at everything they attempt, but Tenenbaums attempts more.

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