January 10, 2011
Let me get this out-of-the-way, I love Wes Anderson movies. Those of you that know me know that I can watch The Royal Tenenbaums, Rushmore, The Life Aquatic, and The Darjeeling Limited in one sitting. Yeah I know I’m missing Bottle Rocket, but hey, no one’s perfect. Anyway, the first thing that came to mind in the first 10 or so minutes of this thing was I felt like I was watching a British movie directed by Wes Anderson. Slick cuts, laugh out loud humor that only I was laughing at, clever dialogue, deadpan delivery, self loathing and deprecation. It was all here. Submarine, directed by Richard Ayoade (mostly known for directing various british tv episodes and an Arctic Monkeys video), tells the tale through the eyes of Oliver Tate (Craig Roberts), a 15-year-old kid who thinks he’s a lot more important in his small town than he really is. I’ll reference Anderson again, as Oliver reminded me of Jason Schwartzman’s character in Rushmore, a self-important geek trying to make his way through the world.
Oliver lives in a somewhat dysfunctional but loving home. He suspects his mother is having an affair with the inspirational speaker/neighbor that lives next door, played by Paddy Considine, who hella reminded me of Ben Stiller’s “inspirational” weight loss coach in Heavyweights! Freakin hilarious. Who knew the best time to practice Judo punching was while getting a bj in front of a trash can on fire. It’s a funny scene. Anyway, Oliver develops a relationship with a free-spirited girl named Jordana, whom he spends all of his time with, desperately pining over her every minute. The attention isn’t really sent back Oliver’s way, and it makes for a pretty interesting relationship.
The movie aims at being pretty deep later on in it’s 97 minute running time, however there is plenty under the table comedy to be had, mostly in the general musings of Oliver to himself, and his father, played by Noah Taylor, yep Noah Taylor who was Vladimir Wolodarsky in The Life Aquatic. See I knew there was a connection! Anyway, this is a decent enough way to spend an hour and a half. You’ll chuckle more than a few times under your breath and for the most part you’ll genuinely feel for the characters. Kick me in the balls but I dug this film!
4 Out of 5