Wes Anderson’s ”love letter to journalists” is an anthology film, taking us to a fictional French city sometime in the 1900s where an American outlet is creating its last issue. Centered around Bill Murray’s newsroom, we’re treated to three stories, its subjects, ideas and look inspired by actual New Yorker articles and legendary writers from the real world. A treat for the director’s fans, because of that sprawling, lovable cast and the filmmakers’ meticulously detailed visual fireworks, all attuned to Anderson’s typical taste. Alternately fun and dull; ultimately endearing.
2021-U.S. 108 min. Color-B/W. Written and directed by Wes Anderson. Cinematography: Robert Yeoman. Music: Alexandre Desplat. Cast: Bill Murray (Arthur Howitzer, Jr.), Owen Wilson (Herbsaint Sazerac), Tilda Swinton (J.K.L. Berensen), Frances McDormand (Lucinda Krementz), Benicio Del Toro, Timothée Chalamet… Elisabeth Moss, Jason Schwartzman, Adrien Brody, Léa Seydoux, Jeffrey Wright, Mathieu Amalric, Fisher Stevens, Griffin Dunne, Henry Winkler, Bob Balaban, Liev Schreiber, Edward Norton, Willem Dafoe, Rupert Friend, Christoph Waltz, Saoirse Ronan. Narrated by Anjelica Huston. Voice of Jarvis Cocker.
Trivia: Co-produced by Anderson; co-executive produced by Roman Coppola, who also contributed to the story, along with Schwartzman. Kate Winslet was reportedly first cast in Moss’s role. Filmed in 2018-2019 and delayed more than a year because of the COVID-19 pandemic.