The art of film is an extremely versatile medium. Many people collaborate towards making a film, but one vastly important cog in the machine is the director/film maker. This person often has majority control over how the film is going to look, being defined as having “the creative vision.” This in turn means a lot of what a film represents is routed at the stylistic choices a director makes.
Many directors have different techniques depending on the type of film they’re most known for. For instance, Christopher Nolan, the brains behind projects such as ‘Inception’, ‘Interstellar’ and ‘The Prestige’, uses intelligent dialogue and focus throughout his films, often using a non-linear structure of storytelling. This gives his films a certain feel that makes him notable through his trademarks, hence why he is one of the best directors of our time.
However, I’d like to focus on a personal favourite of mine, Wes Anderson. If the name doesn’t ring a bell, some of his classics will. Through ‘Fantastic Mr Fox’ or ‘The Grand Budapest Hotel’, Wes has created some modern masterpieces that I believe will stand the test of time. His style is often one of the most recognisable, from his carefully curated aesthetic colour palettes to dialogue and camera work that entrances all who view it; he has been noted as an “auteur”.
"He’s magical. He’s delightful, funny, entertaining and sophisticated"
In particular, some of my best loved films of his include: ‘The Darjeeling Limited’, ‘The Royal Tenenbaums’ and ‘The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou’. ‘The Darjeeling Limited’ is a great film to start you off on your “Wes Anderson journey.” Three brothers travel across India trying to reconnect after their father’s death. This film is one that is both beautiful in a visual sense but it is also shot in a way that puts the viewer into the story, as if you’re also experiencing the journey alongside the characters. I know, I know, lots of filmmakers do this, but Wes does it in a way that brings out the raw emotion that the characters feel, all the love and uncomfortableness, everything that is felt is shown, in a real and wonderful way. (Hence why I think it’s a fabulous introduction into how Wes works and what magic he can produce).
I believe the cinematography of Wes as a whole is something to marvel at and by just watching even 5 minutes of any of his films, you can say, “that’s Wes Anderson.” Undeniably you can look at his visuals, listen to the soundtrack, be drawn in with his magnetic characters and know exactly who you are watching. All elements of his films are carefully constructed to form these clearly entertainment based creations (rather than an immersive experience) that radiate all of Wes’ personality.
Regarding why I believe he is important in film, he’s fun. He’s magical. He’s delightful, funny, entertaining and sophisticated in his own wonderful way. If you want to expand your artistic horizons or learn more about film, grab a hot drink, settle down and let Wes Anderson show you what cinema is really about.