SYNOPSIS: THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL recounts the adventures of Gustave H., a legendary concierge at a famous European hotel between the wars; and Zero Moustafa, the lobby boy who becomes his most trusted friend. The story involves the theft and recovery of a priceless Renaissance painting; a raging battle for an enormous family fortune; and a desperate chase on motorcycles, trains, sleds, and skis - and the sweetest confection of a love affair - all against the back-drop of a suddenly and dramatically changing Continent.
For a lack of a better word, cute is the easiest way to describe Wes Anderson’s The Grand Budapest Hotel. Probably Anderson’s most accomplished and ambitious movie to date, the feature contains enough talented stars and genres to fit into three different movies. Yet Anderson who juggle writing duties never let the entire spectacle go to his head and the end product truly deserved repeated viewings.
It started as an arthouse drama with an author (Tom Wilkinson) narrating how he came to learn about the Grand Budapest hotel located at a remote mountainside when he was a young man. The author now played by Jude Law met the elderly owner, Zero (F. Murray Abraham) and he began to recount his humble beginnings as a lobby boy working under the hotel’s devoted concierge, Monsieur Gustave (Ralph Fiennes) to the author.
Before Ralph Fiennes even warm up his appearance onscreen, Anderson’s script starts to turn into some goofball crime caper involving a priceless Renaissance painting which was bequeathed to Gustave by a wealthy clientele, Madame D (an unrecognizable Tilda Swinton). At the same time, Madame D’s son, Dmitri (Adrien Brody) and his cold-blooded assistant, Jopling (Willem Dafoe) are determined to get it back from Gustave.
As per any Anderson’s movie, this one is jam-packed with his trademark eccentricities and outrageous gags. There’s a ruthless murder, a witty prison escape, a chase through a snow-covered terrain and much more. It’s a whole lot of fun and entertainment as you follow Zero and Gustave on their adventure all thanks to Anderson’s wicked scribing and direction.
Newcomer Tony Revolori and Saoirse Ronan make an affecting young couple while Ralph Fiennes is born to play Gustave however it doesn’t even matter if Anderson’s regulars, Owen Wilson, Bill Murray and Jason Schwartzman appeared only briefly or the fact that heavyweights liked Harvey Keitel and Edward Norton deserved more screentime. Everyone seems like having a great time playing to Anderson’s carefully composed imaginary world which consist of plenty of whimsical miniature effects.
With Alexandre Desplate providing the vibrant score and an incredibly created gorgeous European setting as the backdrop, Wes Anderson’s latest movie is one of his finest after Fantastic Mr Fox and Moonrise Kingdom. It’s a dazzlingly playful adventure that you can’t miss.
Mendl’s Secret Recipe teaches you how to make your very own Mendl pastries.
Two brief segments Cast and Wes Anderson have the cast talking mainly about working with the talented Anderson.
A Stills Gallery and Theatrical Trailer is also included.
Definitely not the fault of the transfer, there are frequent intended colour grading of the presentation which gives it a soft and artificial look. The soundtrack boasts a Dolby Digital 5.1 that provides a terrific sounding score and the occasional ambient effects.
DVD RATING :
Review by Linus Tee