A story within a memoir being retold as a story. Nope, this isn’t Inception… This is The Grand Budapest Hotel.
The film opens with a girl in a cemetery holding a memoir by “The Author”, in which recalls a time during a visit to (fictional) Republic of Zubrowka in his early career where Zero Moustafa, the hotel’s owner, told him a story.
Monsieur Gustave H. (Ralph Fiennes) is the concierge of The Grant Budapest Hotel, and he runs a tight ship…as well as sailing a ship with many of the lady visitors of TGBH. Madame D. (the full name is a load), one of Gustave’s clients mysteriously passes away and bequeaths him a extremely priceless painting “Boy With Apple.” A young Zero Moustafa joins him in his journey to retrieve the painting.
Their journey takes them all over the place. Gustave is arrested for murder, and Zero must help him escape all while keeping the painting safe. Many people are killed in what seems to be a conspiracy for the family to inherit all the wealth Madame H. left behind.
Gustave and Zero eventually find the answers to the murder and keeping “Boy With Apple” – a keepsake piece for Gustave and eventually Zero.
This is a classic Wes Anderson film. Vibrant colors, slightly corny sets, and a great cast all work with the pace and humor of the film. Who else is in this film you ask? Click here for a sample.
Disclaimer: I am a huge fan of Wes Anderson films. The Grand Budapest Hotel rates right up at the top of his catalog. I tried to see it opening weekend but it was only being shown in LA & NYC. Regardless, it was definitely worth the wait and I will watch it again multiple times.
**** ½ / *****
Rotten Tomatoes (as of 4/6/14): Critics: 92%, Audience: 90%