The Darjeeling Limited Reviews

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January 15, 2015
I wonder if the three of us would've been friends in real life. Not as brothers, but as people.
- Jack
Another classic by Anderson does it again with beautiful a story of sibling relationships and times of crisis.

The Darjeeling Limited tells us of the story of three estranged brothers going on a 'spiritual journey' unbeknownst will change their lives.
Super Reviewer
March 2, 2008
Not quite a movie in my taste and i didn't find much value for me in it. Story follows 3 brothers on a train trip in India to become family again after some problem in their life.. A bit to slow for me with a not to great story to follow despite the great cast of Owen Wilson , Adrien Brody. Altho its watchable and other may enjoy it more then me. Also be sure to watch the short movie Hotel Chevalier as it has connection with this movie.
½ August 8, 2014
I watched this at 2 in the morning when I was in a negative mood so a second watch is probably necessary. However, from what I remember The Darjeeling Limited feels a tad self-indulgent and disappointing.
November 30, 2014
It is certainly not one of Wes Anderson's stronger contributions. Cinematography and acting are both really great as expected in any of his films, but unfortunately the plot (is there even a plot?) is essentially pointless and uninteresting.
½ February 19, 2008
Most of the things I found endearing about Life Aquatic became pretty tiresome in Darjeeling for me. In the end the characters just aren't very interesting and it feels like very little happens to them. Maybe it ended to soon. But probably not. Hey, at least you'll have some laughs.
½ May 26, 2014
Review In A Nutshell:

Wes Anderson is not a stranger to disappointment, his first film was met with disappointing criticisms during preview screenings, but managed to find acclaim from the final cut. The films that preceded The Darjeeling Limited, aside from The Royal Tenenbaums, were also disappointments in their ability to create financial profit. The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou was the first time Anderson failed has produced a film that did need meet critical success; and to makes things worse, it was far from reaching equilibrium in its budget to profit ratio. This must have affected Anderson deeply, possibly causing him to contemplate about himself and the direction of his career. Through that trauma, what manifested was The Darjeeling Limited.

This film is arguably Anderson's deepest and most serious film. Comedy is certainly still found in its atmosphere but it never overwhelms the characters or its story, which was the case for his previous and subsequent films. In this film, Anderson shifts himself back from where he was during the production of Steve Zissou, spending more time with the film's characters and their journey rather than obsessing over the fabrication of intricate sets and quirky influences. There is a sense of humanity given to his characters, something that has been clouded in his previous films, aside from maybe The Royal Tenenbaums; but then again both films feature similar characteristics but just under different circumstances. This emphasised layer in The Darjeeling Limited is both the film's greatest strength and weakness. The film certainly benefits from this added emotional and psychological layering to his characters, especially since they now fit well with the natural world that the film is set on, but the lack of eccentricities prevent the film from being such an entertaining ride; The Royal Tenenbaums balanced emotion and quirkiness with a sense of grace, while The Grand Budapest Hotel leans more towards the latter and provides an audience a sense of escapism and comedic entertainment that only certain directors are able to achieve, notably Terry Gilliam. I do respect Anderson for tackling human drama and grounding it to a natural and deep level, but I felt he went a little too far off his natural groove, leaving us with something that is only half-effective.

The Darjeeling Limited, once again, tackles the idea of family but this time the father-son dysfunctional dynamic has been omitted and instead replaces it with sibling rivalry and disconnection. Anderson, Roman Coppola and Jason Schwartzman, the screenwriters of the film, take something as clichéd as the dysfunction between siblings but does something different to them; everything that one would expect between siblings are found in these characters but they do not prominently rise to the surface and instead what we have there is grief, pain and loneliness. These are brothers who have shared the same loss, but driven and shaped by different personalities, therefore each one handles situations and ideas differently, making each one distinctive. This film is without a doubt, Anderson's most obvious film, with its first thirty minutes providing exposition of its characters and establishing the motifs that their journey would be exploring. I did not entirely mind its pushy and heavy handed dialogue as it did make it easier for me to find an attachment for the three characters, but since it's so different from Anderson's usual dialogue, it did at some moments take me out of the immersive experience.

Spirituality is the film's driving premise. It is about three brothers who have embarked on a spiritual journey through India, and along the way plans have been made to find their long-lost mother who may or may not want to see them. These three brothers have agreed, but were reluctant, to go on this spiritual exploration as their recent loss of their father have crippled them physically and emotionally, leaving them with a sense of grief. This grief is handled differently with each brother, and though the other displays a calmer attitude towards it, it still shows that sadness still fills their eyes when it comes to mind. The abandonment of their mother is also an issue that have lingered with them ever since her departure, and since then they still haven't gain a sense of closure. Through their pain and suffering, they have decided to part ways as a family and living their lives with physical and emotional distance from one another. This purpose of this journey is to find spiritual and emotional healing, hoping that it would not only give them the peace they have been longing to gain, but also to patch up the severed bonds that occurred after their father's funeral. Using the itinerary as a guide to their journey, the film demonstrates through the character's struggles, the necessity of intimacy and individuality in a journey like this. Spirituality could only be found if one has the correct mindset to earn this sense of enlightenment, and during their spiritual pit stops, they are constantly distracted by their instinctive nature to purchase materials and goods as a way of masking their personal troubles, but then they find themselves guilty and therefore they attend these spiritual sites and perform rituals as they believe that is how one finds the essence of spirituality. The idea of spirituality being confided by a set of instructions are an example of ignorance, as what they do not know is that spirituality could be found in any shape or form, it simply depends on what gives an individual that sense of peace and happiness.

The name Robert Yeoman has been long affiliated with Wes Anderson that it would be difficult for me to think of an Anderson production without him. Yeoman has developed a strong comradery with his director, that he is able to anticipate the necessities that is needed to fulfil that overall vision; Anderson is a very detailed and eccentric director and if under the hands of another director of photography and lacks an understanding of his work ethics and expectations then the film's entire visual outlook would be a disaster. Everything that was found in Anderson's previous films is found here once again, and it remains just as effective as it was before. Yeoman is certainly working under unfamiliar conditions with the director; primarily using locations instead of sets and like his previous film with Anderson, many of the film's backdrops include empty natural spaces. Thankfully, even with the film's larger scope and lack of quirky eccentrics, it still manages to create a similar to effect to what was found in Rushmore and The Royal Tenenbaums; I wish I could say the same for The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou. I was a little sad that Mark Mothersbaugh did not come back to do the musical score for The Darjeeling Limited, the film instead uses tracks from films produced by Merchant-Ivory or Satyajit Ray; I was even more shocked that he did not use any of the tracks from used in Ray's The Apu trilogy, which was composed by the legendary sitar musician Ravi Shankar. What was used for the film was a strong fit with the film's story and themes. It achieves in coming off as both being inspired and intelligent due to precise timing and tones that stay blended with one another. Though the soundtrack is primarily driven by Indian music, a balance was created through incorporating it with some western based tracks and bringing back that garage rock sound through artists like The Rolling Stones and The Kinks.

The performances in this film were equally strong, but sadly it never seems to reach a level of outstanding. It was lovely to see Adrien Brody under the hands of Anderson, showing a much lighter side of him in comparison to what I have previously seen from the actor. Owen Wilson and Jason Schwartzman bring their usual quirky charm when under Anderson's direction. There is really not much here to thoroughly cover in regards to the performances of its cast, as most of it is something I have seen before.

The Darjeeling Limited is another divisive film by Wes Anderson, but like all of the director's previous films, it grows on you with another viewing; finding further insight to his seemingly simple-structured stories. This film is certainly the director's stab into something different and risky, but he does so without disappointing to the fans that expect to see a Wes Anderson production.
February 15, 2010
A lame and uneventful drama. Wes Anderson sacrifices entertainment for a bizarre indie feel. (First and only viewing - 11/16/2014)
November 15, 2014
Not bad for a lazy sunday afternoons entertainment
November 15, 2014
After years of finding Owen Wilson slightly irritating, i now know why. And now i know, i like. His performance was the highlight of this movie for me. He is bossy and controlling, slightly condescending and downright patronizing, while being so stupid. I've also got a grasp on the Wes Anderson style now and am eager for more. Yet to see the Budapest hotel and look forward to that. All this being said, i am partial to the Indian subcontinent and enjoyed the jokes made at the expense of their culture and everyday lifestyle. These were few and perfectly slotted into the movie.
½ November 14, 2014
I love Wes Anderson films. Although not the best Wes Anderson offering. His characters are always so unusual and off center that they are always interesting to watch.
October 19, 2014
he story of three brothers who finally over come their father's death is touching in that Wes Anderson way.
½ September 27, 2014
This movie reminds me of "The Monkees" on location in India. Who knows what will happen when Davy and Peter's shenanigans create havoc when Michael tries to reunite the band in a trip to India! Wes Anderson is art-film lite. He tries sooooo darn hard but it is damn contrived.
September 25, 2014
If you want to watch a movie that centers around a train, you could watch the preposterous Snowpiercer with a conclusion that reeks like a Coca-Cola commercial, or you could watch The Darjeeling Limited, the marvelous 2007 Wes Anderson film whose mysteries are best left unanswered.
September 13, 2014
Mildly entertaining.
October 17, 2013
Too much mysticism, cursing, meaningless relationships to make me feel connected. Definitely a Wes Anderson flick, but I have come to realize I'm a fan of his non-R rated films most of all.
September 2, 2014
Even though the story has lots of Anderson-ian aspects, this movie is in my opinion separated from all the others. The main reason being that it does not seem so exaggerated, or at least, looks more realistic (thanks to India's visuals). Thus, this brotherly quest for self-completion is thought-provoking in a way that could not be achieved in his other movies when there always was an element that distanced the story from reality. Those three brothers could be anybody, and the splendid interpretation for each one of them adds to the composition and credibility of this one-of-a-kind road movie. And in this lies the success of the film, which also shows that Anderson is not only a tale director.
September 1, 2014
One of my top 5 favorites.
February 2, 2009
Wow... this movie is fucking boring. Again, great actors doing NOTHING! Just absolutely pointless.
½ August 26, 2014
Anything that involves a trip through India would with a cast like this from Wes Anderson sounds about right.
½ August 25, 2014
Un film che sembra uscito dal Sundance festival e che porta la firma indelebile di Wes Anderson.
Rispetto ai suoi ultimi lavori questo film è meno caratteristico anche se alcuni elementi del regista si trovano (alcuni movimenti di macchina molto precisi e squadrati, i colori accesi e le situazioni un po' sopra le righe).
La trama è esile (come spesso accade), ma riesce comunque a tenere dignitosamente il film in piedi.
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