The Darjeeling Limited

I saw the new Wes Anderson film The Darjeeling Limited with my friend Tim a few nights ago. Tim had already seen it, but when he realized there was a Chipotle just down the street from the Hopkins dollar theater where it was showing, and that we’d have time to eat a burrito before the movie, he was interested in coming with to see it again (actually, Tim’s a Wes Anderson fan and he wanted to see it again anyway, but he really does love Chipotle burritos, as do I, they’re delicious).

Darjeeling stars Owen Wilson, Adrien Brody and Jason Schwartzman as brothers who have lost touch with each other, so they take a trip together by train across India in hopes of becoming “like brothers again.” I don’t want to give anything away about the actual plot–because I think it’s a fascinating film that people should see for themselves–but I’d like to briefly comment on Darjeeling’s spiritual journey theme.

Early in their train voyage, Francis (Owen Wilson) tells his brothers, “I want us to make this a spiritual journey, and for us to seek the unknown and learn about it.” Although the “seeking” and “learning” takes the brothers on many bizarre and somewhat disturbing adventures–if you’ve seen any of Anderson’s other films (Rushmore, Royal Tenenbaums, Life Aquatic, Bottle Rocket) you shouldn’t be surprised by any of Darjeeling’s quirks and randomness–their desire to discover something real and satisfying (spiritually or otherwise) is palpable. In the end…again, I promise not to give away any of the movie, especially not the ending…but in the end, it seems like they find what they are looking for under a big wood cross on the top of a mountain (well, I guess that’s only half true…they also seem to find something they were looking for next to a giant elephant statue on the top of another mountain, but a wood cross on top of a mountain has a lot more connections to Jesus/Christianity than a big fake elephant, so I mentioned that one first).

If you have seen any of Wes Anderson’s previous films (and you liked them), I would definitely recommend The Darjeeling Limited. My initial response to Darjeeling is similar to my thoughts after seeing Anderon’s other movies for the first time (especially Rushmore and Royal Tenenbaums); I walked out of the theater thinking “it was good, but not great”… but also, like those other films, I think I will like Darjeeling more every time I watch it, so I will probably see it a few more times after it comes out on video (which will probably be soon).

Has anyone else seen Darjeeling? If so, what did you think…good? bad? still not sure? If you’ve never heard of the film and think it sounds interesting, here’s a link to The Darjeeling Limited’s official site from Fox Pictures.


2 thoughts on “The Darjeeling Limited

  1. This film made me believe in Wes Anderson as a writer and director all over again! And with the help of fellow writers, Jason Schwartzman and Roman Coppola this film, in my opinion, film really soars! Don’t get me wrong, I loved his first three films…’Bottle Rocket’, ‘Rushmore’ and the ‘Royal Tenenbaums’. It was his fourth film, ‘The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou’ that really made me doubt his directing abilities. I was really dissapointed with this film. And I had such high expectations. It had its moments…but not many. But every director makes a bomb sooner or later. Look at every great director’s work since the Cinema started, and you’ll find one or more bad films of the most gifted and talented. But I did enjoy ‘The Darjeeling Limited’. Wes Anderson’s films are much like The Coen Brother films in that the more you watch them the more you like them. one things for sure…I’m definitely picking this one up when it comes out on DVD!

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