Five reasons why you should love Wes Anderson films
December 18, 2018
Wes Anderson is my favorite director and I am absolutely fascinated by so many different aspects of his work. I love the complicated plot lines with dozens of crazy characters. I love how the stories are dark and include themes of violence. I love how Wes Anderson still finds ways to squeeze a few jokes into the movies. But what I love most is how Wes Anderson makes every film distinctly his. While most directors carry similar themes from movie to movie, no director can compete with Wes Anderson’s continuity. So here are five reasons why you should watch a Wes Anderson movie right now.
Wes Anderson has a signature aesthetic that he implements into every movie that he directs, produces, and writes. This aesthetic is called Twee, described by Marc Spitz in his book Twee: The Gentle Revolution in Music, Books, Television, Fashion, and Film as “the preciousness of all the gentle aspects of adolescence.” In other words, Twee is the hipster, retro, quirky, indie look that you can see in tons of aspects of culture and lifestyle today. In Wes Anderson’s movies, it is easy to identify Twee in the costume designs. The most notable costume designer for Wes Anderson movies is Milena Canonero, who worked on The Darjeeling Limited, The Grand Budapest Hotel, and The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou. From bright blue suits with red beanies to boy scout uniforms, his costume aesthetic all screams Twee.
The sets always follow the same Wes Anderson/Twee aesthetic. In fact, they are most likely what has made his work so notable. All it takes is a beautiful pastel color palette, some symmetry, and a few vintage props. The famous pastel castle in The Grand Budapest Hotel, the retro beach scene in Moonrise Kingdom, and Ben Stiller’s shaving scene are just a few more examples of Wes Anderson’s unmistakable style.
Wes Anderson’s cinematography is another noteworthy part of his work. Just by watching one scene, it is very easy to identify an Anderson film. He always works the camera with smooth motions from side to side, which compliments the symmetrical sets. This style also feeds into the Twee aesthetic by maintaining the calm, innocent, indie look and marks every scene with Anderson’s signature. If you get headaches from fast-paced action movies, then you will most definitely enjoy a Wes Anderson film.
Another absolutely amazing part about Wes Anderson is how he manages to include nearly the same main cast in every movie. His cast usually includes Bill Murray, Owen Wilson, Jason Schwartzman, Anjelica Huston, and Luke Wilson. These Academy award winning actors manage to make you cry, giggle, and dream of a Wes Anderson style adventure, which seems to be the effect that Wes Anderson looks for. His consistent collaboration with this cast is extremely unique and helps carry over his style into every movie.
I could discuss the cinematic elements of every Wes Anderson movie for hours and hours, but the final reason for why I love Wes Anderson movies is the dysfunctional family theme. This theme likely stems from his own dysfunctional family since Wes Anderson’s real parents are divorced. In every movie, trouble seems to be brewing throughout the entire family. Despite dozens of tear-jerking moments, the families almost always try to get back on their feet and support one another. They laugh things off with a quirky joke and move on. This concept really fascinates me since the theme of a dysfunctional family transforms into a completely different message. It shows the audience that life is life and you can always find a family that will support you — even if you are not related by blood. This outcome sounds too good to be true, but Wes Anderson loves fantasies and plot twists.
I love Wes Anderson films because they are perfect in the most unorthodox way possible. So the next time you are looking for a comedy, a drama, or a romantic movie, look for a Wes Anderson film, and you will be surprised by how quickly you fall in love with his work too.