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Thursday October 2nd 2014

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The Grand Budapest Hotel

by Clay Bloodworth

“You see, there are still faint glimmers of civilization left in this barbaric slaughterhouse that was once known as humanity.” Wes Anderson is one of them.

His movies can be described in a number of ways, but the word that invariably comes to mind is genius. The writer/director behind films like “Rushmore” (my personal favorite), “The Royal Tenenbaums” and “Moonrise Kingdom,” Anderson has effectively created his own world of quirky characters that resonate with people more than your typical Hollywood escape. And now only two years since the release of his last project, he brings us “The Grand Budapest Hotel,” which proves to be just as delightful and charming as his past work. Chock-full of small but equally memorable roles from actors that we all know and love, it may be the cleverest movie you see all year.

Set in 1932, it’s the story of Monsieur Gustave (Ralph Fiennes) who quickly becomes friends with his new protégé and lobby-boy, Zero (Tony Revolori). Their adventures begin after the death of a wealthy guest who had a special relationship with Gustave. We see him quickly become pinned as the prime suspect and the events surrounding Zero’s attempt to clear his name. Full of slapstick humor that will undoubtedly make you laugh, the film is constructed in a magnificent and elegant manner where all the characters get their chance to shine. Even the smallest roles (the crippled shoe-shine boy and the man with a scar on his face) still have an impression on the movie as a whole, and it never feels too ‘written.’

Fiennes delivers a striking and hilarious performance unlike anything he’s ever done and works well alongside scene-stealers like Adrien Brody and Edward Norton. “The Grand Budapest Hotel” is available on Blu-ray and DVD and will be available On Demand July 1.