The Grand Budapest Hotel, produced, written, and directed by the American director, Wes Anderson, is entertaining. It has received critical acclaim, and will probably receive an Oscar nomination. The cineplex was remarkably full when I saw it with my friends at a Monday matinee. It has been doing well at the box office, and appears to be popular with audiences.
Set in the 1030s, the story is fantasy, as is the European country in which it takes place. The Second World War impinges on the characters, but is treated as a backdrop to the film, certainly not an important part of it.
Ralph Feinnes is perfect as Monsieur Gustave H., the hotel's charismatic concierge, and Rony Revolori as Young Zero Moustafa, is a wonderful foil to Feinnes. The cast is fantastic, including Bill Murray, Jude Law, and Tilda Swinton. Each has a cameo part, and I was left feeling I would have liked to see more of them.
Rosemary and Carolyn enjoyed it, as did I. This is the kind of film the English do so well. Perhaps the fact it was financed by German financial companies, and filmed in Germany, explains why it felt not just quite up to the standard Rosemary and I expected. The film had all the ingredients, but just didn't quite make it for us. Wes Anderson is young, so has time to improve.