‘French Dispatch’ celebrates art of storytelling

Erik Jaman critiques Wes Anderson’s 10th directed feature film



‘The French Dispatch,’ directed by Wes Anderson, celebrates the journalism of the 1920s

“The French Dispatch” directed by Wes Anderson was a fantastic homage to the soul of storytelling and journalism.

The Film was by no means a masterpiece, nor Wes Anderson’s best. Yet the heart of these stories contained within the film were able to grasp my soul, strangle it, and break it. The themes and takeaways were one of the strongest of any Anderson flick.

Each of these stories were influenced from the perspectives of their writers. You can really hear the soul in the way each one told their story. I’m glad that in many ways this film recognizes writing as an art form in itself.

The first story about modern art was gorgeous. The differences between love and marriage, modern art and incompetence, and genius and insanity were perfectly navigated. And I loved the potent pair of Adrian Brody as well as Benicio Del Toro. They blend perfectly.

The second story was my favorite by far. The concept of intense revolutionary spirit of the youth combined with the lack of actually knowing what they want and inter- revolutionary discourse is fantastic. The blurred lines between intelligence and narcissism resonated with me. Zeffirelli’s(Timothee Chalamet) raging egotistical manner being fueled by his hidden self consciousness was fantastic. Timothee Chalamet and Frances McDormand were standouts for me. The aching for passionate love that Frances McDormand hid behind a stone cold “neutral” journalist face was amazing. 

My problem was in the third story. For me it didn’t tap into my emotions as much as it should. Sure it was fun with the chase scenes and amazing inclusion of animation, but I did not really care about any of the characters. Even worse, I couldn’t follow  the story that well because the narration is too fast to comprehend. 

The final scene with the death of Arthur Howitzer Jr.(Bill Murray) and the death of the newspaper speaks volumes to the state of journalism today as millions battle over what is fake and what is true. This film ends with the optimistic opinion that art and fact can be balanced and should be cherished.



1 – Painful to watch

1.5 – Terrible

2 – Not good

2.5 – Alright…

3 – Good

3.5 – Great

4- Awesome

4.5 – I love it!

5- The best


Overall: 4.1/5

Story: 2.5/5

Performances: 5/5

Visuals: 5/5

Soul: 4/5


UPCOMING: Belfast (Nov. 2021), King Richard (Nov. 2021), C’mon C’mon (Nov. 2021)