- Actors: Mathieu Amalric, F. Murray Abraham, Willem Dafoe, Adrien Brody, Ralph Fiennes
- Directors: Wes Anderson
- Format: Blu-ray
- Number of discs: 1
- Studio: 20th Century Fox Orders
- DVD Release Date: 3 September 2014
- Run Time: 100 minutes
- Customer Reviews: 3,456 customer ratings
- ASIN: B01A9R4V4E
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- #760 in Movies (Movies & TV)
Grand Budapest Hotel, The (Blu-ray)
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The Grand Budapest Hotel recounts the adventures of Gustave H, a legendary concierge at a famous European hotel between the wars, and Zero Moustafa, the lobby boy who becomes his most trusted friend. The story involves the theft and recovery of a priceless Renaissance painting and the battle for an enormous family fortune -- all against the back-drop of a suddenly and dramatically changing Continent.
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20th Century Fox’s story begins in a tiny theater on New York’s Lower East Side. In 1904, fresh from Hungary, 25-year-old William Fox amazed audiences with his magical hand-cranked films. The beginnings were humble – folding chairs, a painted wall for a screen – but the desire to entertain and move people has been at the core of what 20th Century Fox has been doing ever since. By 1915 Fox’s five-cent movie shows were wildly popular and his single screen grew first into a chain of 25 theaters around New York City and then into a movie making business.
THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL recounts the adventures of GUSTAVE H., a legendary concierge at a famous European hotel between the wars; and ZERO MOUSTAFA, the lobby boy who becomes his must trusted friend. The story involves the theft and recovery of a priceless Renaissance painting, a raging battle for an enormous family fortune; a desperate chase on motorcycles, trains, sleds, and skis; and the sweetest confection of a love affair - all against the backdrop of a suddenly and dramatically changing Continent.
Genres: Comedy | Drama
M Recommended for mature audiences | 99 minutes
Cast and crew
- Wes Anderson
- Ralph Fiennes
- F. Murray Abraham
- Mathieu Amalric
- Adrien Brody
- Willem Dafoe
- Jeff Goldblum
- Harvey Keitel
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And no movie seems to sum up that style as effectively as "The Grand Budapest Hotel." Anderson's eighth movie is like an antique music box -- an elaborate miniature world of smooth prettiness and Old World charm, with little dancing silver figures moving through their paces. The corkscrew quest of the main characters gets a bit slow at times, but the direction and acting are utter perfection.
A young girl appears at a cemetery monument, holding a book written by The Author (played by Jude Law as a young man, and Tom Wilkinson as an old one). The book tells of how he met the wildly wealthy Zero Moustafa (played by F. Murray Abraham as a young man, and Tony Revolori as a young one) at the Grand Budapest Hotel, and Zero's explanation of why -- despite his vast wealth -- he stays in a tiny cramped room even though he owns the place.
In his youth, Zero was a lobby boy working under Monsieur Gustave H. (Ralph Fiennes), the hotel concierge who also lavished... um, "attention" on rich elderly blonde ladies. When Madame D. (Tilda Swinton) dies on a trip back home, Gustave and Zero show up for the will reading... and everyone is shocked (and angry) that she left the priceless "Boy with Apple" painting to Gustave. Her thuggish son Dmitri (Adrien Brody) is particularly displeased.
So Gustave sneaks "Boy With Apple" out, only to be accused of poisoning Madame D and thrown in prison. Around this time, the country also breaks out into civil war. With Zero's unflagging help, Gustave may have a chance to escape prison... but can the duo also escape a brass-knuckled assassin (Willem Dafoe), avoid the fascist army, buck murder charges AND get the painting back?
"The Grand Budapest Hotel" is set in a Europe that never was. It's in a fictional country called Zubrowka, which seems to have a lot of snow, mountains and rich old ladies. This allows Wes Anderson to give the movie almost the air of a bittersweet fairy tale where happy endings don't last. Eventually someone dies, and all you can do is hold on to whatever memories of joy you once had.
But it's not all bittersweetness. Most of the story -- set within two separate frameworks -- is a wry, dark comic caper about serial murders and a valuable painting, which corkscrews around various wacky escapades before finally settling back at the titular hotel. Anderson wrings a lot of humor from the macabre (Deputy Vilmos Kovacs and his lost fingers), adding awkward whimsy into even the darkest escapade ("Who's got The Throat-Slitter?").
And it's simply... beautiful. Beautiful like a storybook that doesn't have to be realistic. The alpine scenery, the quaint little towns, the strangely alluring Grand Hotel Budapest -- both in the past (elegant and luxurious without being rococo) and the past-present (a slightly decayed citadel, like an aging dowager). While Anderson sticks with his static, centered shots and sharp transitions, he still manages to linger on the slightly unreal beauty of his sets.
It's also one of the few movies that has an all-star cast that actually WORKS, rather than just racking up studio points. Ralph Fiennes is simply perfect as Gustave, a man who is all contradictions -- noble and scheming, kindly and selfish, an adventurer who truly cares for the people he takes advantage of. And he clicks perfectly with Revolori, who plays a squire to Fiennes' knight -- an earnest young lad whose ambition seems to be to be a slightly more moral version of Gustave.
And all the smaller roles work beautifully too -- an unrecognizable Swinton (seriously, you can't even tell it's her), Law, Abraham, Edward Norton as a Communist commander, Jason Schwartzman, Dafoe, Saoirse Ronan as Zero's beloved, Jeff Goldblum, and Adrien Brody as a tantrum-throwing thug who has just enough quiet menace to avoid being silly.
It will take considerable effort from Wes Anderson to top "The Grand Budapest Hotel" -- an elegant, bittersweet little story within a frame whose gilding has started to flake off. Laugh, cry, and eat tiny little gourmet cakes.
Top international reviews
Like the costumes, the sets are stunningly beautiful. Everything is so highly stylized as to be exaggerated - befitting for the setting inside a luxury hotel, a place where reality is suspended the moment you enter. Visually, the film is a masterpiece. Every frame is composed down to the last detail. It's a joy to watch. The story is fun, especially the more whimsical moments, but I must admit that I couldn't get emotionally invested in the fate of the characters. For me, this one is style over substance. Great entertainment, I enjoyed watching it, enjoyed Ralph Fiennes' amazing performance, loved the music, but the thing I remember most are the sets and costumes.
The DVD is lovely. It has English subtitles for those who may need them. Also included are the following extra features:
- Mendl's Secret Recipe
- Promotional Featurettes (Cast, Wes Anderson)
- Stills Gallery
- Theatrical Trailer
It is when one of his 'older very wealthy dear ladies' dies and leaves her considerable fortune to him, much to the anger of her very large extended family, that frantic events, murder and wild chases take place, that are in the tradition of The Blues Brothers, Indiana Jones and The Pirates of The Caribbean chaotic chase scenes.
'Hammy' overacting, earthy language, and exuberant fantasy-like sets are the order of the day in this film which is very funny, gripping and excellent entertainment.
For it's originality, panache, settings, and outstanding 'make-you-laugh' comedic values "Grand Budapest Hotel" richly and justifiably deserves several Oscars.
Unfortunately, this film rates alongside my first long term relationship. I went into it, all excited and with great expectations, but unfortanately it was lacking, a bit like my ex:-(.
I find the story rather rambling but the performances by Ralph Fiennes in particular as well as the young Tony Revelori are well woth watching and the supporting cast give wonderful,character filled performances,especially Tilda Swinton.And worth mentioning Jude Law who is both amusing and restrained here.
I do recommend this.I much prefer The Darjeeling Express which is my favorite movie of Wes's and the Royal Tennenbaums but this is great fun nevertheless. Worth the small investment !
Otherwise this is a hilarious fast moving spoof and needs to be seen several times if you want to have a hope of following the convoluted tale! Vey eccentric and great fun.
Stars include the always great Adrian Brody, as the villain, Saoirse Ronan as a dubiously innocent young innocent, Ralph Fiennes as the ultimate hotelier and Tony Revelor as the wide-eyed hero.
Anyone who loves Amelie and Little Miss Sunshine has a good chance of loving The Grand Budapest Hotel.
Ralph Feinnes offers the majority of the laughs. His character is overly debonair.
It has cameos by many famous actors which merge well within the full cast of the film.
I saw this in the cinema and was desperate to see it again and pre-ordered it. It's a film you will want to see more than once - both for pleasure but also for the many observations that will have been missed the first time round.