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Trailer Deconstruction: Wes Anderson’s ‘The Grand Budapest Hotel’

The Playlist By Rodrigo Perez | The Playlist October 18, 2013 at 1:47PM

Wes Anderson movies are possibly the closest thing to an event movie for the … I was going to say something like "indie nerd cinephile set," but the truth is Anderson’s films are beloved by all kinds of audiences—those who love tentpoles, cineastes, sci-fi aficionados, etc. His visual vocabulary is so idiosyncratic, so singular and distinct, it has practically become a brand or genre unto itself and it can be appreciated by anyone who simply loves movies.
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GBH, more

Characters (in order of appearance of title card in the trailer)

GBH, Ralph Fiennes

Ralph Fiennes as M. Gustave
The rapscallion hotel concierge of “The Grand Budapest Hotel” who winds up in all kinds of trouble in the film for various trespasses and offenses.

GBH, F. Murray Abraham

F. Murray Abraham as Mr. Moustafa
The older version of Zero Moustafa who narrates the trailer and shows up in flashbacks (or should we call them flash forwards?).

GBH, Mathieu Amalric

Mathieu Amalric as Serge
It’s unclear what Serge's role is exactly, but we do see him pulling Dmitri away from Gustave, so they appear to be a colleagues of some sort.

GBH, Adrien Brody

Adrien Brody as Dmitri
Clearly the son, or a kin of Tilda Swinton’s Madame D., he’s mad as hell that he didn’t get “Boy With Apple” as an inheritance.

GBH, Willem Dafoe

Willem Dafoe as Jopling
He appears to be Dmitri’s muscle with a penchant for wearing lots of rings.

GBH,  Jeff Goldblum

Jeff Goldblum as Kovacs
While it seems he might be an art auctioneer, perhaps he’s a lawyer as he’s reading off the item’s in Madame H.’s last will and testament.

GBH, Harvey Keitel

Harvey Keitel as Ludwig
A prison inmate who presumably befriends M. Gustave after he himself is incarcerated (there are shots of the two of them trying to make a prison break). A rather hilarious touch: his prison tattoos seem to have been designed by Eric Anderson (Wes’ older brother and go-to illustrator) and thus have an amusingly inappropriate child-like quality to them.

GBH,  Jude Law

Jude Law as Young Writer
Not a lot to go on here, but he has the same glasses and moustache as Tom Wilkinson’s author and distinctly looks like a younger version of that character. Jude Law has said in interviews he does only appear in flashbacks.

GBH, Bill Murray

Bill Murray as M. Ivan
He is the concierge of the five-star Hotel Excelsior Palace. A rival hotel perhaps? Maybe not, he does assist Zero and Gustave during their flight from the authorities according to the trailer.

GBH, Edward Norton

Edward Norton as Henckels
He is the main police authority figure in the film. While the movie is set in Hungary, the various look and feel around his character, including the Gabelmeister’s Peak pub in the background of his title card is very Germanic.

GBH, Saorise Ronan

Saoirse Ronan as Agatha
She is Zero’s love interest, is a baker, acts as a “fence” and has a birthmark which looks distinctly like Mexico on her face.

GBH, Jason Schwartzman

Jason Schwartzman as M. Jean
He’s a modern, or more modern-day hotel concierge as we can tell by his aspect ratio. Note that familiar looking painting above his head. It appears he works in the Grand Budapest Hotel of the future.

GBH, Tilda Swinton

Tilda Swinton as Madame D.
Clearly smitten with the lothario, elderly-loving Monsieur Gustave, she’s the aristocratic biddy that owns “Boy With Apple.” Also, she is dead.

GBH, Owen Wilson

Owen Wilson as M. Chuck
He appears to be the replacement concierge for The Grand Budapest Hotel after Gustave gets in all sorts of trouble.

GBH, Tom Wilkinson

Tom Wilkinson as Author
There’s not much to go on here other than our earlier posit, but he is the only aspect ratio shot in 1.85.1.

GBH, Tony Revolori

Tony Revolori as Zero
The junior lobby boy in-training under the strict command of M. Gustave.

Léa Seydoux as Clotilde
It’s probably worth pointing out that the only actor to appear on the poster but not in the trailer is Léa Seydoux, who is playing a character called Clotilde. Our original thought was she might be playing an older version of Saoirse Ronan’s character but considering the poster has them listed under two different names, that’s obviously not it. "I do work in a bakery and I have a relationship with the lead character," she said in an interview earlier this year. So she works alongside Ronan’s character then and maybe fucks the ever-horny Gustave?

GBH, Egon Schiele

Extra credit: Check out Larry Pine, the actor who played convincing Charlie Rose-like TV figure Peter Bradley from “The Royal Tenenbaums” (also the star of many commercials that Anderson has directed), standing next to Owen Wilson’s character. If you watch the trailer closely, you can tell Pine’s character is the hotel manager. He also replaces Gustave With Owen Wilson’s M. Chuck.

Also, the painting that gives everyone pause midway through the trailer? It’s by Egon Schiele. Anderson obviously has a penchant for amusing paintings in his films, be it the amusing and regal portraits of family members (the Blume family in “Rushmore,” Royal’s grandmother the “saint” in ‘Tenenbaums,’ “Boy With Apple” in ‘Budapest’), or the random freaky paintings of Miguel Calderon featured in Eli Cash’s apartment.

 - Rodrigo Perez with helpful assistance from Cory Everett. Special thanks to Larry Wright for his helpful aspect ratio confirmation in this piece. Follow him here on Twitter or visit his cool “film, photography, technology and fun” site Refocused Media.

Grand Budapest Hotel, Tilda Swinton

This article is related to: Wes Anderson, The Grand Budapest Hotel, The Royal Tenenbaums, The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou, Trailers, Film Trailers, Features, Feature


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