Friday, June 23, 2023

Asteroid City

Whoa man. Like I'm a bit speechless but all I'm gonna put as a disclaimer here is, if you're not a Wes Anderson fan you need to turn around now sunshine cause we got praise incoming.

Even though this is only the 3rd film I've seen directed by the guy I'm pretty set on seeing his whole filmography. Okay I'm going to attempt to review this movie and summarize the plot. So the story is more or less a fictional stage play that we follow intercut with the real world behind the scenes of it all, it's a very meta storyline and I'm kinda proud of myself cause earlier today I was thinking of the visual aesthetic and it dawned on me that the film looks like a high school stage play so brownie points for me. We meet up with an assortment of characters who travel to Asteroid City for a science award ceremony that quickly gets hijacked by a brief alien visitor which I'd say roughly happens halfway through, so we get a lot of time getting to know the characters beforehand and how exactly they are coping with that little incident after the fact. It's weird man. I mean stylistically in terms of direction, framing, and dialogue aside it's kinda hard to break down or at least for me it is because to bring out that Tim Burton quote I like, "It's too complicated, it's too deep, it's like trying to explain the Bible or something." basically there is an edge of interpretation to it. There is a clear connection between the play and the writer of the play beyond creator and creation which could very easily be part of that too, and I don't wish to color perceptions of what it may be (not yet anyway) so I'm just trying to objectively state what I saw. I really love this style of dialogue, it's so to the point to an almost bashingly blunt effect but it's just so refreshing to hear people say exactly what they think and feel even if it's to acknowledge they don't know how to feel. For a high functioning autistic individual like myself who speaks without a filter or complexity, it's a sight for sore eyes. It would take all damn day rattling off the star studded cast here from main character to brief cameo so all I'll say is they do really great jobs and help immerse yourself in this fiction. The humor was more hit than miss with me, in fact I was shaking holding in my laughter cause we got a pretty solid group of people and I ain't one to distract, so I'd say it was a definite hit for me. And as stated before in terms of direction, cinematography, framing, and editing it screams Wes Anderson and I'm a sucker for his look and aesthetic with asymmetrical framing, a rich color palette, constantly interesting camera movements, and editing as cutting as the dialogue. He even mixes bits of stop motion, puppetry, and flat out breaking the fourth wall in an extremely casual way. Say what you damn will about the guy's movies but he is entirely unique. It almost feels like sensory overload trying to unpack and critique everything presented, and I do fully understand it's a matter of taste and not everyone will like or even love it, but for me I had a great time. I was really looking forward to the movie, so far was my most anticipated film of the year, and I walked away extremely happy and excited to talk about it. It really and truly is days like this where I remember why I started this show to begin with. Final scores oh boy what to give it? Definite 4 stars, slightly stuck between an 8 and a 9 so I'll give it 8.5/10, I feel quite compelled to do an In Retrospect on it because it really is a movie deserving of at minimum two watches so that should be fun. Indy 5 next week, all I'm asking is please don't kill or even attempt to kill off Harrison, and fucking hell you know what I just realized? I haven't talked about Crystal Skull yet. Alright, more alien stuff next week!

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