The “Grand” Wes Anderson

Forget Leo Di Caprio. You know who truly deserves some Oscar gold?  The forty-five year old film god of quirkiness, Wes Anderson. This director-screenwriter has been making movies for nearly two decades, raking in rave reviews from both critics and fans alike.

Anderson’s films aren’t for those Hollywood blockbuster fans who waste their Thursday nights camping out at movie theaters to watch the new Marvel movie. Anderson is modern cinema; however, he does not produce films that will top the box office like Michael Bay or Brett Ratner’s movies. Anderson’s distinctive style, such as where he takes the main focus or subject and places it in the center of a shot, can feel at times oddly dizzying for those unaccustomed to his symmetry—this video explains this technique through clips from his films.

His films also have recurring themes: adultery, unlikely friendships, unconventional characters, abandonment, misery, and sad relationships. His movies’ visual symmetry can be unappealing to those unaccustomed to his ways; yet, it’s one of the many reasons for his strong cult following. Cinematography and film junkie adoration aside, Anderson’s real talent as a filmmaker lies is his writing. In movies such as The Royal Tenenbaums or Moonrise Kingdom, the characters and dialogue drive the story, contrasting with how many films rely on thin plotlines or certain actors to fulfill that job.

He’s so skilled that two of his movies have been nominated for “Best Original Screenplay,” the category for best original script, at past Academy Awards. Anderson lost his first possible Oscar in 2001 with the nomination of his movie The Royal Tenenbaums, losing out to Gosford Park. Eleven years later in 2012, his film Moonrise Kingdom lost to Quentin Tarantino’s Django Unchained. From his three overall nominations, Fantastic Mr. Fox was the only one not nominated for “Best Original Screenplay,” and instead, due to its unique stop-motion nature, vied for “Best Animated Feature,” losing to Pixar’s Up in 2009. Nevertheless, this could be his year. With only three prior nods, I expect him to finally take home Hollywood gold.

Undoubtedly, he’ll be nominated for his screenplay The Grand Budapest Hotel. Not only is it definitively Anderson, but it’s also perhaps his most complex piece in terms of plot. In this film alone, there are multiple murders, a prison break, a priceless painting, a ski chase, and a shootout. Arguably, the film is also his most fast-paced feature, with a great focus on character development, especially that of Monsieur Gustave H, played by Ralph Fiennes, who should receive a nomination for best actor. This eccentric movie is the typical behind-the-camera masterpiece one can expect when seeing Anderson’s name on the movie poster.

Realistically, Anderson probably won’t win “Best Director,” assuming he’s even nominated. I predict The Grand Budapest Hotel will most likely be nominated for “Best Picture,” considering I haven’t spotted many comparatively great movies this year. I guess all that can be done now is await next year’s Oscars on February 22, time enough to re-watch his movies.