What Wes Anderson Is Watching in Self-Isolation

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Hotel Chevalier, 2007
Hotel Chevalier, 2007(Film still)

Just in time for the weekend, Anderson expands on the list of films he’s been enjoying during lockdown, including features by Spike Lee, Marco Ferreri, David Lean, and more

At the beginning of our government-imposed lockdowns, Wes Anderson shared a list of films that he had been watching via a personal letter to the Criterion Collection. “How fortunate we are to have this Louvre of movies at our fingertips!” Anderson wrote of the Criterion’s catalogue, which listed Wooden Crosses, An Angel at My Table, and Arthur Hiller’s The Out-of-Towners among others as must-watch films for self-isolation. If you’ve worked your way through Anderson’s previous recommendations already, you will be pleased to hear the director has revealed another batch, just in time for the weekend.

Spanning romance films, mid-century adventure comedies, satirical neo-noir thrillers, and visually arresting dramas, there is truly something for everyone in Anderson’s latest list – which was originally published in the New York Times as part of a piece honouring this year’s cancelled Cannes Film Festival.

This list includes comedies such as John Huston’s 1953 adventure Beat the Devil; Spike Lee’s 1989 drama Do the Right Thing, William A. Wellman’s romance Nothing Sacred; and Marco Ferreri’s gluttonous La Grande Bouffe. It also features darker stories including William Richert’s 1979 neo-noir satirical thriller Winter Kills to John Ford’s drama The Long Voyage Home, Seth Holt’s 1962 film Station Six-Sahara and Kenji Mizoguchi’s black-and-white melodrama A Story from Chikamatsu. And, for the romantically inclined, love story dramas Alice Adams by George Stevens and The Passionate Friends by David Lean. 

The director’s hotly anticipated tenth feature film The French Dispatch was due to be released in July, though due to the coronavirus pandemic the film is now set to premiere on October 16. Set in 20th-century Paris, the weird and wonderful film boasts an all-star cast, including Bill Murray, Owen Wilson, Frances McDormand, Adrien Brody, Jason Schwartzman and Timothée Chalamet (in his first Wes Anderson film), as well as former AnOther Magazine cover stars Tilda SwintonSaoirse Ronan and Léa Seydoux. We can’t wait.

Watch the trailer for The French Dispatch here.