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The Grand Budapest Hotel: Worth The Visit

By Steph's Scribe @stephverni

GrandBudapestHotelI haven’t seen many films this year, and that’s a crying shame for someone who claims to be a movie buff. Life’s kept me busy, so I’m looking forward to snuggling on the couch when some of these films hit OnDemand. However, I was able to sneak in Begin Again and The Grand Budapest Hotel.  I loved both of the films, and we were treated to hearing Adam Levine and Maroon 5 sing Lost Stars from Begin Again on Oscar Night. I blogged about this after I saw the film, so you can read my impressions here.


Ralph Fiennes as Gustave

However, as for The Grand Budapest Hotel, do yourself a favor and book your stay now. The film is quirky, fun, silly, goofy, and the camerawork and scenery are hilariously utilized and bring this story to life. The film takes place in the 1930s at the Grand Budapest Hotel, which is a popular resort. The concierge, Gustave H., who is played by Ralph Fiennes (if you know me well, you know I absolutely drooled over Mr. Fiennes when he starred in The English Patient), executes his role brilliantly. Gustave H’s lobby boy is named Zero, and he becomes Gustave’s protege (and friend). Gustave loves providing excellent service to the hotel’s guests, and in the opening scenes we learn he particularly enjoys sexually satisfying some of the elderly women guests at the hotel. Rather suddenly, one of Gustave’s lovers dies (played by Tilda Swinton), and Gustave finds he has inherited an invaluable painting. He then becomes the chief suspect in her murder. And so the plot thickens…

This film by director Wes Anderson is wacky, entertaining, well-written and acted, and is a sheer pleasure. I loved the lines, the costumes, the sets, the special effects, all the guest stars (including Jude Law, Adrian Brody, Harvey Keitel, Bill Murray), and especially Edward Norton, an actor whose work I’ve come to admire (The Painted Veil, The Illusionist). Norton and Fiennes make the film fun. You will enjoy the ride.

Edward Norton

Edward Norton

The film won for the following:

Best Achievement in Costume Design: Milena Canonero

Best Achievement in Make up and Hairstyling: Frances Hannon and Mark Coulier

Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Original Score: Alexandre Desplat

Best Achievement in Production Design: Adam Stockhausen (production design) and Anna Pinnock (set decoration)

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