Whenever I step into Wes Anderson movies, I usually have no idea what I’m about to watch. There have been instances when I exited the theater with the same sense of uncertainty. My anticipation for Asteroid City leaned towards a similar outcome, and early reviews hinted at the same. Although this might not be an encouraging sign for most films, I believe it’s precisely where Anderson’s brilliance comes to light. Asteroid City is undoubtedly a visual masterpiece, but with another watch may prove to be so much more.
From the very first frame in Asteroid City, you can tell Wes Anderson was not holding back this movie. Roughly three months ago, a viral TikTok trend emerged where people attempted to imitate Anderson’s distinct style, but watching this movie feels like Anderson’s way of demonstrating that they were nowhere near capturing his essence. The integration of miniatures and stop-motion was particularly striking. They are used constantly throughout the movie but seamlessly blend so well into each scene that it’s easy to miss them. As customary with every Anderson movie, Asteroid City utilizes its unique color pallet with shades of blues, greens, and oranges which delights the viewers’ eyes. The composition of each shoot was masterfully crafted and shows Anderson is only getting better over time.
From the first trailer, I knew the cast for this movie would be amazing. While it features Anderson’s signature ensemble of actors, it also introduces fresh faces to the mix. Scarlett Johansson and Jason Schwartzman had enchanting chemistry, and their scenes were my favorite. The dialogue, with its poetic style, surprisingly resonated well with Anderson’s newcomers like Maya Hawke and Bryan Cranston. It felt every character had a role in the story, and each plot line was equally as engaging. With a refreshingly short runtime of one hour and forty-five minutes, Asteroid City stands out amidst an era of increasingly lengthy films. Within this short duration, Anderson tells a cryptic tale that manages to achieve something truly remarkable. Similar to the cast, the plot almost feels like a crucible where all the different elements come together in the end to form something new.
Asteroid City is the most Wes Anderson movie he has made yet. If you’re a fan of his distinct style, this is a must-see. Anderson is at the top of his game visually, and with a simple yet driving score to accompany it, it’s hard not to be pleased. It’s a film with a lot to love, with its charming comedic moments and a narrative that keeps you engaged. The story seems to be a peak into the life of Anderson, and the questions he asks daily. I foresee myself watching this many times in the future, it’s stress-free and just makes you feel happy. Anderson continues to stretch what you can do with visual storytelling and the power of films. Repeated viewings of Asteroid City will undoubtedly strengthen its case as Wes Anderson’s most stunning film.