Lily Rothman watches the above trailer and snarks, “If there was ever any question whether director Wes Anderson’s next film, The Grand Budapest Hotel, would look like a Wes Anderson film, those doubts are hereby assuaged.” Marc Tracy, on the other hand, applauds the director’s dependable style:
Consistency is today the hallmark of our most valuable artists. There is so much stuff produced now—so many movies and albums and books and articles and magazines and browser tabs and Internet memes and hashtag jokes and autotuned crying babies and athlete Instagrams and museum shows and, yes, blog posts. Sometimes word of mouth (or extremely good publicity) guides us to what we should be devoting our ever-diminishing quantity of attention to; occasionally we might be really lucky to happen upon the thing itself. Most of the time, though, we miss what is great, and what is good is not fully appreciated, divorced as it is from a larger context. Increasingly, everything, even works of art, feel like really good BuzzFeed posts: Charming, satisfying, and completely self-contained.
Works produced by artists like Anderson are different. There is inherent virtue to their having a dominant style, even if any individual one is bad. It gives us something to talk about (and to read books about: New York’s Matt Zoller Seitz has a brand-new volume on Anderson). It gives us someone to argue over. It gives us a context in which to enjoy something.