The Live Aquatic is the other Wes Anderson film that seems to generate a lot of hate, well I’m here to defend it!
“When his partner is killed by the mysterious and possibly nonexistent Jaguar Shark, Steve Zissou and his Team Zissou crew set off for an expedition to hunt down the creature. Along with his estranged wife, a beautiful journalist and a co-pilot who could possibly be Zissou’s son, the crew set off for one wild expedition”
The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou is a hilarious Adventure Comedy starring Bill Murray on top form as the the titular Steve Zissou. As you have probably guessed by now I am a huge Wes Anderson fan, I love all of his films and get extremely excited when a new film of his is announced (see my Moonrise Kingdom post for further evidence). So this week I already watched The Darjeeling Limited and as the Moonrise Kingdom trailer has been released I felt in the mood for some more Anderson action.
In my opinion the Life Aquatic is his funniest film, mainly due to the fact that it features Bill Murray’s most prominent role in a Wes film. Murray’s pitch perfect dead pan delivery is a perfect match for Anderson’s writing style and to be honest I will never understand how anyone can hate something that has Bill Murray in it, the man just has funny bones, he oozes comedy at of every part of his being. He is hilarious. Having said that I don’t want to forget Willem Dafoe, he is brilliant as Klaus the “B squad leader” who’s childish jealousy of Steve’s supposed son Ned Plimpton (played by Owen Wilson) is both touching and amusing in equal measure.
Everything about this film is top quality. The set’s, costume’s and especially the music. One of my favorite parts of the films is at the end when Steve and Ned have been arguing over Jane (Cate Blanchett) and they walk through the whole ship talking, as they do they are follwed in a single tracking shot and we see every member of the crew just going about their duties. It’s a great shot. I really love this film and I am certain that time will be very kind to it. I’m sure in years to come people will look back and spend time trying to figure out just how/why The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou didn’t receive the appreciation it deserves in it’s own time.