Starring: Ralph Fiennes, Tony Revolori, Willem Dafoe
Director: Wes Anderson
Running Time: 99 mins
The Grand Budapest Hotel is an American film about the adventures of Gustave H., the concierge at the famed Grand Budapest Hotel in the Republic of Zubrowka, and his loyal lobby boy, Zero Moustafa, as they evade imprisonment for all sorts of misdemeanours.
This film was odd. Wes Anderson’s films are always completely bizarre, and this was no different. Its visuals are ridiculous, but beautiful, it’s got a crazy, surprisingly dark story, however it’s not actually a very funny film, just fast and enjoyable.
To start with: the biggest disappointment of this film. Sadly, this really didn’t live up to the past Wes Anderson films in terms of its comedy. It’s chock-full of jokes the whole way through, but none of them are really hilarious; just simple, average comedy.
And it’s that that really brings this film down, largely for the first hour. During this period, there’s an establishment of the story and characters for the end, however what should have been keeping it entertaining was the comedy, and it just didn’t, which disappointed me quite a lot.
What you really do have to look past the disappointing comedy is the amazing visuals. If you’re looking for something particularly Wes Anderson-y to look at, this is perfect, with perfect cinematography to strengthen the atmosphere of various scenes, and excellent directing on the part of Anderson himself, which brings up the quality a whole lot.
For the first part of the film, it is quite boring, with little development of the main characters after their establishment along with the lack of good comedy, however at the climax, it completely changes into being quite a dramatic, exciting and strangely dark story.
You’ve got a thrilling chase story, with the main characters being pursued by no less than 3 different parties, one of whom (played by Willem Dafoe) is incredibly chilling to watch, and it’s all rounded up in a frightening and exciting gun battle that precedes the eventual Nazi occupation of Zubrowka, and in the end, it’s this finale that really saves the rest of the film.
Overall, this gets a 6.8, because although it had a surprisingly exciting story, along with fantastic visuals, it’s just that its poor comedy makes it a lot less satisfying to watch for the duration.