I picked up the Criterion edition of The Royal Tenenbaums for The Husband because I had heard it was a good comedy but didn't give it to him because, as I read a bit about it, it just didn't seem to be his "type" of comedy -too much tragedy in the midst of it all, maybe. I ended up putting it in the stack with all the other to-be-watched DVDs, and the Younger Son picked it tonight. We liked it. The film is directed by Wes Anderson and stars Anjelica Huston, Gene Hackman, Gwyneth Paltrow, Ben Stiller, Luke Wilson, Owen Wilson, Danny Glover, Bill Murray and Kumar Pallana. I got a kick out of the music.
Images Journal says, "Gene Hackman shines, sinking his teeth into the meaty part and devouring it with gusto; everyone else is trying to keep up." Senses of Cinema concludes, "The Royal Tenenbaums remains emotionally crippled to the end." Roger Ebert says it "exists on a knife edge between comedy and sadness." Slant Magazine says, "The Royal Tenenbaums is a film of rare beauty, alive with humanity and crippling sadness. It earns its joy because Anderson can make an otherwise ancient cliché crackle as if it were new" and "At its simplest, Anderson's latest masterpiece becomes a paean to second chances." The New York Times says, "the whole enterprise begins to feel more arch than artful, a gilded lily that spoils its perfection by insisting on it." Variety calls it and underachiever and describes it as "a story of a desperate attempt to repair missed connections, one inevitably doomed to failure but not without dividends."