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neumu
Tuesday, September 2, 2014 
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Cinematronic by Michael Snyder
Film
cinematronic
  The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou cinematronic
  director

Wes Anderson

cast

Bill Murray, Owen Wilson, Cate Blanchett, Anjelica Huston, Willem Dafoe, Jeff Goldblum, Michael Gambon, Noah Taylor, Bud Cort, Seu Jorge, Robyn Cohen, Seymour Cassel

year

2004

rating rating cinematronic
  The idea of laid-back Bill Murray as an egomaniacal celebrity marine biologist (think an American version of Jacques Cousteau, only stoned and a tad feckless) was inspired and rife with comedic potential. So co-writer/director Wes Anderson ("Rushmore," "The Royal Tenenbaums"), who made efficient, effective use of Murray as a supporting player in previous films, was on the right track when he launched "The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou." In this willfully silly, slightly bloated comedy, Murray's Steve Zissou, sometimes moving as if waterlogged, captains his ramshackle equivalent of Cousteau's exploratory vessel, and endeavors to hunt down the shark that ate his longtime second-in-command while recording the pursuit on camera for his ultimate documentary. Anderson created a boatload of eccentric characters to bounce off of Murray and rounded up a hifalutin' crew of players for the parts: Cate Blanchett as a journalist assigned to write a story on Zissou; Angelica Huston as Zissou's wealthy, estranged wife; Owen Wilson as a Kentucky airline pilot who may or may not be Zissou's long-lost son; Jeff Goldblum as a rival oceanographer; Willem Dafoe as an overly moody Teutonic crew member, etc. OK, Murray isn't the sole reason to like this least of Anderson's films, but he's the main reason. Is "The Life Aquatic" laugh-out-loud, wet-yourself funny? No. Does it manage to amuse? You bet.  
cinematronic
cinematronic


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