Movies: Best indie Wes Anderson films

You’re looking so well, darling, you really are.

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What is it about watching a movie with your loved ones, that’s seemingly ordinary but feels extraordinary? It might have something to do with a little pocket of comfort, another little hoogah! 

To explore this hoogah, we decided to curate a list of Indie movies directed by Wes Anderson that you can watch with your family. Some have said no other director has made them feel emotions this strongly! 

No matter how quirky and eccentric his films might be, they resonate with human elements, deep characters and cathartic scenes; all under the umbrella of meticulous design and humor.  

So gather the troops, the tubs of popcorn and the bowls of ice cream, and get watching!

1. The Grand Budapest Hotel

A candy hued, whimsical murder!

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Source: IMDB

Written by: Wes Anderson & Hugo Guinness

Cast: Ralph Fiennes, Saoirse Ronan, Bill Murray & more…

Genre: Drama, Comedy, Crime, Adventure, Indie

Initial Release: 2014

Runtime: 1 Hour and 40 Minutes

Available On: Youtube, Google Play

Rating:

4.6/5

Ever felt like stepping into a world that’s painted in a pastel palette, and meeting characters that are endearing oddballs? 

The Grand Budapest Hotel takes you on a whimsical journey of murder and an unlikely friendship, complicated by the rise of a fascist power. 

Zero Mustafa and Monsieur Gustave go on an adventure through a once luxurious hotel, a prison and a charming bakery; an adventure that involves thievery and a battle for fortune in an utterly butterly hilarious fashion that will you in bits!

Source: Youtube

2. The Royal Tenenbaums

A light-hearted, bittersweet treat!

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Source: IMDB

Written by: Wes Anderson & Owen Wilson

Cast: Danny Glover, Gene Hackman, Bill Murray & more…

Genre: Drama, Comedy

Initial Release: 2001

Runtime: 1 Hour and 50 Minutes

Available On: Disney, Hotstar

Rating:

4.3/5

Nestled in New York City lives Etheline Tenenbaum, separated from her husband Royal.  Being widely popular geniuses in their childhoods, the Tenenbaum kids, (now adults) find their ways back home to live with their mother indefinitely because of this and that. 

A flaky father if there ever was one, Royal decides it’s time to reunite with his emotionally scattered family which leads to a series of hilarious events, including a friendly stabbing or two.

Source: Youtube

3. The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou

An absurdly silly nihilistic film!

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Source: IMDB

Written by: Wes Anderson & Noah Baumbach

Cast: Bill Murray, Cate Blanchett, Jeff Goldblum & more…

Genre: Drama, Adventure, Comedy

Initial Release: 2004

Runtime: 1 Hour and 59 Minutes

Available On: Amazon, for Purchase

Rating:

4.3/5

What do you think of going on an adventure with a bunch of kooks to find a mythical shark? 

Here’s your chance to go on one with eccentric oceanographer Steve Zissou, who tries to make films like famous explorer Jacques Cousteau, and his equally eccentric film crew. PS: 

There’s a scene involving electric jellyfish that might just blow your mind away.

Source: Youtube

4. Moonrise Kingdom

A wonderfully awkward children’s fairytale!

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Source: IMDB

Written by: Wes Anderson & Roman Coppola

Cast: Bill Murray, Edward Norton, Bruce Willis & more…

Genre: Comedy, Drama, Adventure, Teen, Coming-of-Age, Romance

Initial Release: 2012

Runtime: 1 Hour and 35 Minutes

Available On: StarzPlay

Rating:

4.6/5

A lot of films try to remind you what it’s like to be a carefree kid in a kid’s world, but this film really pins the nail on that donkey! 

Sam and Suzy are in love and decide to run away to live their lives together, relying on Sam’s boy scout skills and Suzy’s intelligence to keep them safe and fed. 

His fellow boy scouts at Camp Ivanhoe, under the leadership of scout master Ward, set out to look for the young couple. 

Go back to a time when kids spent their days outdoors running wild and free with their imagination, to a world where love isn’t just meant for the adults.

Source: Youtube

5. Bottle Rocket

Quirky, and hilarious!

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Source: IMDB

Written by: Wes Anderson & Owen Wilson

Cast: Owen Wilson, Luke Wilson, Robert Musgrave & more…

Genre: Comedy, Drama, Heist

Initial Release: 1996

Runtime: 1 Hour and 45 Minutes

Available On: Amazon, for Purchase

Rating:

3.5/5

A trio of wackos- Anthony, Dignan and Bob- are set on being badass criminals. 

Hilariously, they turn out to be just bad at being criminals! With carefully laid out plans of pulling off a robbery and then running for it, the three amigos find that they’re in a lot more trouble than they know how to deal with.

Source: Youtube

6. The Darjeeling Limited

An eccentric take on dealing with death!

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Source: IMDB

Written by: Wes Anderson, Roman Coppola & Jason Schwartzman

Cast: Owen Wilson, Adrien Brody, Jason Schwartzman & more…

Genre: Comedy, Drama, Adventure, Indie

Initial Release: 2007

Runtime: 1 Hour and 44 Minutes

Available On: Direct TV

Rating:

4.1/5

Three brothers  embark on a spiritual journey to India, with a lot of baggage- both literally and metaphorically. 

After a few days together sharing all sorts of strong medication, and a hilarious episode with a snake, the brothers find themselves at a river. 

A few of the village children are caught in its powerful flow, and have to be rescued. 

Do the brothers manage to rescue them all? That’s for you to find out!

Source: Youtube

7. Fantastic Mr. Fox

Funny and feisty for all ages!

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Source: IMDB

Screenplay by: Wes Anderson & Noah Baumbach

Cast: Meryl Streep, Bill Murray, George Clooney & more…

Genre: Comedy, Animation, Crime, Adventure, Children’s Film

Initial Release: 2009

Runtime: 1 Hour and 28 Minutes

Available On: Prime Video

Rating:

4.8/5

In an autumnal toned farm, lives Mr. Fox and his family. A clever fox, he feeds his family with the food he steals from his human neighbors Boggis, Bunce and Bean. 

Bent on stopping this constant thievery, the three farmers plot to capture and kill Mr  Fox. Helpless and starving, Mr Fox decides to steal through underground passages into the farms, aided by a friendly badger. 

Although it is far from your average children’s film, Fantastic Mr Fox can be thought of as a witty, funny gateway Indie film for all ages.

Source: Youtube

8. Rushmore

Coming-of-age Comedy!

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Source: IMDB

Written by: Wes Anderson & Owen Wilson

Cast: Jason Schwartzman, Bill Murray, Olivia Williams & more…

Genre: Comedy, Drama, Indie, Coming-of-Age

Initial Release: 1998

Runtime: 1 Hour and 33 Minutes

Available On: Amazon, for Purchase

Rating:

4.5/5

Meet Max Fischer, a 15 year old star student that excels in everything he does except academics. 

Unsure of where his life is heading, he falls head over heels for a teacher, Ms Cross, only to have his heart broken. 

He finds out his already married mentor, Herman Blume, is seeing her. Follow their journey through angst and loss, flavored with humor, as they accept themselves for who they are. 

What’s more, this film has a terrific soundtrack that manages to alter its mood to suit that of the moments the characters are going through, adding immensely to your experience.

Source: Youtube

9. Isle of Dogs

A fuzzy, furry story.

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Source: IMDB

Story by: Wes Anderson, Roman Coppola, Jason Schwartzman & Kunichi Nomura

Cast: Bill Murray, Jeff Goldblum, Edward Norton & more…

Genre: Drama, Animation, Adventure

Initial Release: 2018

Runtime: 1 Hour and 45 Minutes

Available On: Disney, Hotstar

Rating:

4.6/5

Are you in the mood for a funny doggy delight? Set in Japan, Isle of Dogs is a heartwarming tale about a boy, Atari, in search of his best friend. 

His dog, Spots, was deported to Trash Island, with several other dogs due to a quickly spreading disease associated with dogs. Amidst this politically active canine world, Atari finds a group of scruffy pups to help him with his mission. 

This film is witty and clever, despite its political nuances. Also, does the title sound like ‘I love dogs’, or is that just us?

Source: Youtube

10. Hotel Chevalier

A short to complement The Darjeeling Limited.  

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Source: IMDB

Written by: Wes Anderson

Cast: Jason Schwartzman & Natalie Portman

Genre: Drama, Indie, Short Film

Initial Release: 2007

Runtime: 13 Minutes

Available On: Apple iTunes

Rating:

2.5/5

Two lovers spend time together in Paris, snuggled in their hotel room. They walk through intimacy and uncertainty and portray a very realistic and relatable relationship. 

Kids won’t understand or enjoy this. It is a lovely short for adults, that complements The Darjeeling Limited, but also works just fine on its own.

About Wes Anderson

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Source: IMDB

Wesley Wales Anderson (born May 1, 1969) is an American film director, producer, screenwriter and actor. His films are known for their eccentricity and distinctive visual and narrative styles. Anderson has a unique directorial style that has led several critics to consider him an auteur. 

 

Wes Anderson films mostly are fast-paced comedies marked by more serious or melancholic elements, with themes often centered on grief, loss of innocence, dysfunctional families, parental abandonment, adultery, sibling rivalry and unlikely friendships. He is known for his obsessively symmetrical compositions.

Three of Wes Anderson films—The Royal TenenbaumsMoonrise Kingdom, and The Grand Budapest Hotel—appeared in BBC’s 2016 poll of the greatest films since 2000. (Source wikipedia)

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