After present opening (I will get around to blogging about that later today) those of us still here went off to see Wes Anderson‘s new movie "The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou." (Only one really small spoiler)
Let me first say that I really have enjoyed Wes’s early work and I was really looking forward to seeing this film. I have to say at some level I came away a bit disappointed. Yes I laughed a lot during the film but I think maybe I wanted to enjoy it more. One thing that kind of gave me a slightly negative feeling was there were some really aburpt cuts. I do not think this was really in Anderson’s style, maybe he was trying some thing new but it just seemed at times that there was poor editing. Hopefully you will not let this get to you but I found it a bit annoying. There were some very beautiful shots in the film. My sister had a great comment about wanting the film to be over so that she could go watch it again and look at things in the scenes other than directly watching the plot. The acting was good to great from all of the cast. Willem Dafoe stoled the show in my opinion. He was playing a roll that was such a polar opposite from what he generally played that it just made me laugh. I have to give away one of the gags in the film (toward the end) that in the team had a little "go team" kind of thing where they put their hands in and then give a little chear as the pull them out. Dafoe’s character is kind of the forgotten team member who really wants to be a true part of the team as a whole. There is a scene where Bill Murray and Owen Wilson are doing this cheer and almost out of focus and down a hallway you can see Dafoe see this happening and he acts as if he is part of the huddle by sticking in his hand and pulling it out at the same time as the other two even though is he is 20+ feet away from this happening.
OK this is another small spoiler but I want to see if anyone else notices this. Perhaps he is seen other places but in the scene where they are raiding the underwater lab I swear I saw Stephen Lea Sheppard who played Dudley Heinsbergen (Bill Murray science subject) in "The Royal Tenebaums" running up the spiral stairs — he was also on the "Freaks and Geeks" TV show. The Royal Tenebaums was on TV tonight and also Bill Murray was on TV in the movie Scrooged — a fine holiday favorite.
It is hard for me to give a total ringing endorcement to this movie. I know my dad did not enjoy it. If you like Wes’s other work then go see it (I am sure you might have already). The cast was great but I am still stuck with the editing issue in my mind.