Hammerman Ikon

Hammerman Ikon Film Guide

The French Dispatch

Director: Wes Anderson
Cast: Benicio del Toro, Adrien Brody, Tilda Swinton, Léa Seydoux, Frances McDormand, Timothée Chalamet, Lyna Khoudri, Jeffrey Wright, Bill Murray, Owen Wilson, Christoph Waltz, Edward Norton, Jason Schwartzman, Anjelica Huston

The final issue of The French Dispatch, a fictional magazine in the vein of The New Yorker, features three stories set in a French town of Ennui-sur-Blasé. The Concrete Masterpiece is about a brilliant artist who is in prison for murder, Revisions to a Manifesto is about unusual student protests, and The Private Dining Room of the Police Commissioner is about a chef/police officer who solves a kidnapping. I have gradually fallen out of love with Wes Anderson. While his early works like Rushmore (1998) offered a nice story, well-drawn characters, and inventive visuals, his recent films like The Grand Budapest Hotel offer infuriating and beautiful-looking nothingness, where a famous actor with a twirly moustache and funny name passes as a character. It feels like Anderson squeezed a 400-page screenplay into 108 minutes for this collection of uninteresting vignettes. The visual overkill and non-stop narration certainly kept me busy, but there wasn't one moment when I felt invested in these people. The incredible cast fetures just about every white actor you can think of, and Jeffrey Wright.