Tag Archives: Luke Wilson

The Set of 400: #14 – My Favorite Punctuality Pin

Today! Because I saved Latin – what did you ever do?

Rushmore (1998)

Directed by Wes Anderson (x5)

Starring: Jason Schwartzman (x6), Bill Murray (x14), Olivia Williams, Brian Cox (x8), Luke Wilson (x5), Seymour Cassel (x4), Kumar Pallana (x3), Mason Gamble, Sara Tanaka (x2), Connie Nielsen, Andrew Wilson (x4), Stephen McCole

On the high end of this list, historically, I go back and forth between my favorite Wes Anderson movie and my favorite Bill Murray movie. Anderson flip flops between Rushmore and Tenenbaums, while Murray as you may have noticed has like five films out of the last fifteen, so there is a constant rotation. But more often than not, it works out that Rushmore is the top film for both, as it is here.

As mentioned in probably all the previous four Anderson movie posts, his style would get solidified in the years immediately after Tenenbaums, even though most of the elements that would define his films were introduced there. Rushmore functions as more of the raw version of this concept – the heightened reality of his world isn’t as much on display, even though things are pretty aggressively off-kilter at Rushmore Academy. The likable asshole main characters here are probably just a smidge more likable than, say, Royal Tenenbaum or Steve Zissou or Gustave H, as at least Max Fischer and Herman Blume are driven and twisted by love, and who can’t relate to that?

Smooth use of Latin!

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The Set of 400: #21 – My Favorite Closet Full of Board Games

Today! Because I’ve always been considered an asshole for about as long as I can remember. That’s just my style –

The Royal Tenenbaums (2001)

Directed by Wes Anderson (x4)

Starring Gene Hackman (x5), Angelica Huston (x4), Ben Stiller (x3), Luke Wilson (x4), Gwyneth Paltrow (x6), Owen Wilson (x5), Bill Murray (x11), Danny Glover (x2), Kumar Pallana (x2), Seymour Cassel (x3), Alec Baldwin (x4), Stephen Lea Sheppard, Andrew Wilson (x3)

Back in #267 The Life Aquatic, I posited that Wes Anderson’s distinctive style truly began with that film, but the entire blueprint was in place in The Royal Tenenbaums. While Aquatic often feels like an over-directed showcase of filmmaking more than a cohesive movie, Anderson hadn’t gotten all that carried away with himself when tackling his third film, and first after his big breakthrough on Rushmore three years earlier. It would take a little time after Aquatic to reconcile the manner of hyper-detail oriented production design with large idiosyncratic cast to compelling storylines – arguably until Moonrise Kingdom in 2012 – but the rougher version of this concept is fully on display here.

And while most of Anderson’s films work best due to their expertly crafted screenplays and oddball twists, Tenenbaums might be the only one primarily driven by the slate of tremendous performances across its eclectic cast. Hackman was purportedly a nightmare to work with on this film, but he delivers his career best comedic performance as the half charlatan patriarch Royal, in one of his last roles before retiring in ’04 (thanks for nothing, Welcome to Mooseport!). He was snubbed by the Oscars, thanks to that enduring bias against comedies, but did get a Globe nomination, plus wins at the AFI Awards, the Chicago Film Critics, and the National Society of Film Critics. The rest of the cast is no slouch either – Stiller’s apoplectic track-suited Chas, Paltrow’s morose theater maven Margot, and especially Luke Wilson’s shattered tennis pro Richie – the inspiration for one of my many failed Halloween costume efforts of years past.

It’s okay, I know I look more Bjorn Borg than the Baumer

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The Set of 400: #92 – My Favorite Jazz Flute

Today! Because the Human Torch was denied a bank loan –

Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004)

Directed by Adam McKay

Starring Will Ferrell (x5), Christina Applegate (x2), Steve Carell, Paul Rudd (x4), David Koechner (x2), Fred Willard, Chris Parnell (x2), Vince Vaughn (x3), Kathryn Hahn, Fred Armisen, Paul F. Tomkins (x3), Bill Kurtis, Jack Black (x5), Luke Wilson (x3), Ben Stiller, Tim Robbins (x4), Missi Pyle (x2), Jerry Minor (x2), Ian Roberts (x3), Danny Trejo, Seth Rogen (x3)

Meeting Sarah in 2004 as I did, the comedies of those early years of the relationship that stuck really stuck. I’ve mentioned #134 Wedding Crashers, #130 Napoleon Dynamite, #189 Team America, #184 Super Troopers, to a lesser degree #313 Fever Pitch – but at the core of the entire era was Anchorman. Not unlike your Austin Powers and Napoleon Dynamites, Anchorman suffers somewhat as the years go on due to its endless quotability. Sure, it stays in the public consciousness and thus sells t-shirts or whatever, and afforded us that okay-ish sequel, but really, I think the details of the original film get a bit lost in the “Scotchy scotch scotch,” “I love lamp,” “Afternoon Delight” of the whole thing. Does everyone recall the whole panda plot of the film? I mean, the less said about pandas the better, just as a general rule for living, but that’s actually the driving through line of the story. Sure, it doesn’t really matter, but it gives a little structure to the wild Burgundy/Corningstone relationship and that epic multi-network news team free-for-all.

But seriously, and I can’t say this enough, fuck pandas.

The only good panda

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The Set of 400: #115 – My Favorite Dystopia, Brought to You By Carl’s Jr.

Today! Because #1: We’ve got this guy Not Sure. #2: He’s got a higher IQ than any man alive and #3: He’s going to fix everything –

Idiocracy (2006)

Directed by Mike Judge (x2)

Starring Luke Wilson (x2), Maya Rudolph, Dax Shepard, Terry Crews, David Herman (x3), Anthony Campos, Justin Long (x4), Stephen Root (x5), Thomas Haden Church (x2), Andrew Wilson (x2), Greg Pitts (x2), Kevin Klee, Brad ‘Scarface’ Jordan, Brendan Hill, Sara Rue

I wish I had been including it all along, because I’m curious where Idiocracy would rank in terms of box office on this list. #399, maybe? #307 The Return of Captain Invincible had virtually no release whatsoever, so that’s probably last, but this is damn close. Completely abandoned by Fox in its often delayed release, Idiocracy only ran on 130 screens for about two weeks, grossing $444,000 per the Mojo. Test screenings were apparently bad, plus they were nervous about the film taking shots at many existing brands – Starbucks, Fox News, Fuddruckers, Costco, and Carl’s Jr. most notably. Fox claimed they didn’t know how to market it – a claim also made seven years earlier when they managed to flop Judge’s other classic, Office Space. So Judge took his next film, Extract, to Miramax – where it also didn’t make money. Ah well!

The world was not ready for this movie

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The Set of 400: #225 – My Favorite Quad Streaking

Today! Because the Godfather himself has decided to grace us with his presence. This is his damn house, he sleeps twenty feet away –

Old School (2003)

Directed by Todd Phillips (x2)

Starring Luke Wilson, Vince Vaughn, Will Ferrell, Jeremy Piven, Leah Remini, Seann William Scott (x4), Ellen Pompeo, Juliette Lewis (x2), Craig Kilborn, Perrey Reeves, Elisha Cuthbert, Artie Lange, Matt Walsh (x4), Sara Tanaka, Sarah Shahi, Bryan Callen, Patrick Cranshaw, Jerod Mixon (x2), Simon Helberg (x3), Eddie Pepitone, Rob Corddry (x2), Andy Dick (x2), Terry O’Quinn (x2), Snoop Dogg, Warren G

Okay, so I was out of college at this point – well, between college would be a better way of framing it – but I was hardly the stable, mature grown-up my Twitter account would currently indicate I’ve evolved into. But I was also never particularly one for big raging parties – it’s pretty hard to throw epic, Animal House style shindigs when you live at home and commute to college – so my continued affinity of these sort of movies probably stems from a vicariously longing for lost times. I mean, I still hung out and drank my face off periodically, but I didn’t feel like I really had the true college experience, pretty much ever.

Sure, I’m fairly well hammered in these pictures (featuring sister-in-law Onion and American hero Mike Walsh), but I’m also fully 30 years old

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