Day 235: The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou (2004)

220px-LifeaquaticposterI honestly believe that one of the greatest comedy movie actors of all time or at least in the last 30 to 40 years is Bill Murray (Ghostbusters). Every decade, he surprises us with how relevant he continues to be with every film that he stars in and that is the case with today’s film The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou. Steve Zissou (Murray) is a world famous oceanographer who has produced great documentaries of his voyages over the years. After one production, his partner Esteban (Seymour Cassel) is killed by a mysterious shark called the Jaguar Shark. The public questions the existence of the shark, so Steve gathers up a crew that includes his estranged wife, a man who is quite possibly his son, and a pregnant reporter who has a low opinion of him along for the ride. The film stars Owen Wilson (Zoolander 2) as Ned Plimpton, Willem Dafoe (Spider-Man) as Klaus, Cate Blanchett (The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button) as Jane Winslett-Richardson, Anjelica Huston (The Adams Family) as Eleanor Zissou, Jeff Goldblum (Jurassic Park) as Alistair Hennessey, Michael Gambon (Gosford Park) as Oseary Drakoulias, Noah Taylor (Edge Of Tomorrow) as Vladimir, Seu Jorge (City Of God) as Pele, Robyn Cohen (Burned) as Anne-Marie, Waris Ahluwalia (The Grand Budapest Hotel) as Vikram, and the film was directed by Wes Anderson (Moonrise Kingdom).

life-aquatic3I definitely have to check out more films from Wes Anderson cause he definitely has his own style of films that you instantly recognize as his. He is in part the true definition of what François Truffaut and his colleagues coined Auteurs. Wes wrote and directed the film meaning he took full artistic responsibility for the film like an author would for a book. The thing that made me fall in love with this film was the various tones and colors that are present in this film. There are just so many colors that take precedence in this film that makes it truly amazing. Even the wildlife that are presented in the film are very colorful and cool looking even though we know that they are fake. This is probably one of the most amazing films to feature Bill Murray and it was just so well written that he was a natural fit for the part. All of the subplots within the film were even written so well that it was hard for me to find any faults. The film isn’t your typical comedy because it doesn’t contain stupid comedy or slapstick comedy, but it is otherwise a parody tribute to French diver Jacques-Yves Cousteau. The film may have bombed in the box office, but that doesn’t mean that the film is awful, it just means it takes time to recognize real art. I am a  huge fan of this film and I think that this is one to put on your list. That is why I am going to give the film The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou an A- because the production sets and the story was excellently done.

Day 161: Zoolander 2 (2016)

square_0Over the past couple of years, we have seen Hollywood transition from remakes to now coming up with sequels some 15 to 20 years or so after the original films (e.g. Dumb And Dumber Too). That is definitely the case with today’s film Zoolander 2 which brings back Ben Stiller (Mystery Men) as everyone’s favorite male model. The world has changed over the last fifteen years and someone is trying to kill off all the beautiful people in the world forcing Derek Zoolander and Hansel (Owen Wilson) out of hiding. Together the two of them will travel to Rome to find Derek’s son and help fashion police officer Valentina Valencia (Penélope Cruz) find whoever is behind these heinous crimes before the fashion world is ruined forever. The film also stars Billy Zane (Titanic) as Billy Zane, Justin Bieber as himself, Sting as himself, Kiefer Sutherland as himself, Jon Daly (The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty) as Agent Filippo, Christine Taylor (Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story) as Matilda, Will Ferrell (Daddy’s Home) as Jacobim Mugatu, Justin Theroux (American Psycho) as Evil DJ, Milla Jovovich (The Fifth Element) as Katinka, Kristen Wiig (Despicable Me 2) as Alexanya Atoz, Kyle Mooney (Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising) as Don Atari, and Fred Armisen (Easy A) as VIP.

MV5BMTUzMDU2MTkxNF5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTgwNTgyMTgzNzE@._V1_I think there should be a window of time that you have to come out with a sequel to a film because 15 years is a long time to wait to do one. That’s why I felt the Dumb And Dumber sequel suffered because they waited too long and comedy changes over time. What was funny in 1994 isn’t funny in 2014 or in this case what was funny in 2001 isn’t necessarily funny in 2016. This may have been a really funny film if it was released in 2002 or 03, but not 15 years after the fact. I have to admit that I liked the overall story of the film and I loved a lot of the acting in the film, but it just wasn’t laugh out loud funny in my opinion. One of the most annoying characters in the film is hipster Don Atari (Mooney) and I suppose I should be commending him cause isn’t that the point after all, hipsters are annoying. The always beautiful Penélope Cruz was definitely a nice addition to the cast of beautiful people, but it just wasn’t enough to save the picture. One thing I didn’t understand was the point of the orgy (made up of Kiefer Sutherland and others) unless I am missing something from the first film. As much as I don’t like Justin Bieber, he was a good sport to die in the opening minutes of the film and what a glorious death it was for the Bieber. The film isn’t boring, it’s just not that funny if you get what I am saying. As I said before, it’s a film that would have been funny if it came out 10 years ago, but they waited too long to strike. I am going to give the film an B- only because it’s better than Kindergarten Cop 2.