Writer/director Wes Anderson has a close relationship with the wonderful folks at the Criterion Collection, and now one of his films that previously got the Criterion DVD treatment has finally gotten the Blu-ray upgrade. When The Royal Tenenbaums opened in 2001, it marked Anderson’s first major film as a “known” director. He burst onto the scene with 1996’s Bottle Rocket, but it was Rushmore that really launched his career. As such, The Royal Tenenbaums came with some pretty lofty expectations. Anderson honed the script with his partner Owen Wilson and went about assembling a truly remarkable ensemble cast. The results are kind of a mixed bag of humor, drama, and wit, but the film works more often than it doesn’t.
Hit the jump for my review of The Royal Tenenbaums Criterion Blu-ray.
I’ve really enjoyed the lists I’ve posted this week and I hope you have too. I keep notes year-round on everything I feel is worth noting about particular movies so I don’t forget and I can compile it into what (hopefully) makes or an informative read. However, this list I’ve been dreading. Unlike the other lists, there’s no real recommendation at work here. It’s a list designed to highlight mostly beloved and established films. It’s also difficult to factor in films of 2008 and 2009 because I don’t know their staying power. Finally, it’s a list that will ultimately please no one because there’s no way I can narrow the hundreds of great films that have come out over the last ten years into twenty that I’ve determined are better than all the rest. So why am I doing it? I have my reasons. They’re not very good ones, but I have them.
The decade is ending, these films left an impact on me, and so I’ll call them out for their greatness and accept that there were plenty of other movies that could have filled in just as easily.
Hit the jump to start the countdown.
I absolutely loved director Wes Anderson’s Fantastic Mr. Fox. The film is his first foray into stop-motion animation and it’s like he brought the genre to him rather than attempting to adapt to the genre. Trust me; if you’re a fan of his previous work like Rushmore, The Royal Tenenbaums, and The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou, you’re going to love this movie.
As most of you know, Fantastic Mr. Fox is based on the best-selling children’s book by Roald Dahl (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, James and the Giant Peach) and it features the voices of George Clooney, Meryl Streep, Jason Schwartzman, Bill Murray, Wally Wolodarsky, Eric Anderson, Michael Gambon, Willem Dafoe, and Owen Wilson. But unlike some animated movies that cast famous actors to help sell tickets, everyone who provides a voice is perfect in this film. Again, this is a great movie that you should check out this weekend.
To promote the film, I recently participated in a group interview with the talented filmmaker. We talked about how the project came together, stop motion animation, voice casting, future projects, and a lot more. It’s a great conversation worth checking out. As always, you can either read or listen to it after the jump: