Madly enjoyable and borderline absurd, The Grand Budapest Hotel is a brilliant, farcical joy that deserves to be utterly relished
In Wes Anderson’s latest, we follow the story of a young lobby boy (Tony Revolori – delivering deadpan at its finest) helping his hotel concierge (Ralph Fiennes) prove his innocence after he is framed for murder.
The Grand Budapest Hotel is brilliant. Fantastically funny, ludicrously fast paced and with outstanding performances from all – and that includes a hellavalot of cameos, mind (is there anyone in Hollywood NOT in this film?). Bill Murray showing up for a solid sub-five minute slot? Yessir. However, chops have to be dished out to the utterly delectable William Defoe as the sociopathic, leather-clad cat-murdering son of a gun. Upon second viewing, I loved Defoe even more. The Grand Budapest Hotel’s cast is just magic.
But the real standout here is Fiennes. He was born to play the zany, ludicrous, womanising, hilarious purple tail coated genius that is Monsieur Gustave H. He is phenomenal in what has to be one of his career defining performances to date. I particularly enjoyed Fiennes’ cheerful delivery of profanity “JUST TELL ME WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON?” Utterly divine. But there’s also a great heart to the performance away from all of his dazzling purple costumes and his rapid dialogue delivery, and this heart manifests itself in the tender, trusting relationship between Gustav and Zero. It’s lovely to watch.
The look and feel of the film is a wonder to behold. Anderson is well known for wanting to be able to manipulate and perfect every frame of his films, and this approach has created an almost dream-like, creamy dessert aesthetic for The Grand Budapest Hotel on screen that is just delicious to look at. It sounds remarkable too, charming even, and your senses are gently lavished with joyous sounds from start to finish. The dialogue is excellent also, as Anderson has penned a script that is witty, sophisticated and staggeringly intelligent to boot.
The Grand Budapest is a masterpiece in fun. And I love that. It has a wonderful, farcical feel to it, but, at its heart, this is a film all about adventure, with murders, prison breaks and scampering mountain chases. The Grand Budapest Hotel is one irresistible dish – tuck in. I did, for repeat viewings. Tasty.