The Grand Budapest Hotel

The Grand Budapest Hotel ★★★★½

Wes Anderson creates delightfully immersive comic fantasias that brim with style, imagination, and wit, but doesn't hermetically seal them off from the darker aspects of human existence. His films don't shy from dealing with issues such as death, war, lost love, divorce, loneliness, depression, failure. I first saw THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL almost six years ago for review when it was first released on Blu-ray and was obviously impressed and entertained, but it took a second viewing for me to look beyond the gorgeous production design, practical effects, and fantastic performances and find the deep well of sadness beneath the surface. I saw some of it before but perhaps I was so bamboozled by the look of the film that I mistook it for an enjoyable art project and little else. Anderson doesn't put it all directly before our eyes and tell us how to feel. You take from his films whatever you want and it's ultimately up to you to dig deeper into the characters. I really liked this film the first time I saw it, but now, I love it. Great films reward repeat viewings. This is one of the many reasons why Anderson is one of my favorite filmmakers.