“A love letter to journalists set in an outpost of an American newspaper in a fictional twentieth century French city that brings to life a collection of stories published in “The French Dispatch Magazine.” – IMDB
I have to be honest, somehow I have come to thirty years of age without seeing a whole Wes Anderson movie. I’ve seen most of Grand Budapest, a touch of Life Acquatic, and a smattering of the others, but I just didn’t seem to have the concentration to make it through an entire Anderson film. But then I saw previews for The French Dispatch and I thought, “Okay, this is it. It’s happening.” Let me clarify…
The trailer for French Dispatch indicated that it was going to be a New Wave French cinematic treat with the young, dashing Timothée Chalamet (is there a person in this world who isn’t slight obsessed)? Perfect! It’s been a busy few months and a sugary little film was exactly what I needed.
And that’s honestly what it was. It was Wes Anderson through and through, which at times can be witty, charming, and heavily nostalgic, and at others can feel like Anderson is…how do I put this delicately…engaging in self gratification.
If you want to see a film packed with A-List stars that isn’t New Years Eve or Valentines Day, his films are certainly the place to do so. However, just as with my favorite candy treats, I forgot the delight of the film soon after I left. There are narratives throughout Anderson’s movies; however, you are often so bombarded with imagery and dialogue that after the film, you may pause to remember what it was even about.
I’ll leave you with this: if you go in understand that French Dispatch is about the journey and not the destination, then you’ll have a much more enjoyable cinematic experience.
So what was this movie all about? A newspaper? Nostalgia for the printed press? The 60s? I’m still not entirely sure. And that’s just fine.
Rating: 6 out 10 Claire Bears
If you like this movie, you should also watch: The Grand Budapest Hotel, Moonrise Kingdom, The Royal Tenenbaums
Streaming: Available in Theaters
With: Timothee Chalamet, Bill Murray, Tilda Swinton, and soooooo many others
Directed By: Wes Anderson