“The Darjeeling Limited” Methodically Character Driven

Genres: Action/Adventure, Comedy and Drama
Running Time:
1 hr. 31 min.
Release Date:
September 29th, 2007 (NY)
MPAA Rating:
R for language.
Fox Searchlight Pictures

Directed by: Wes Anderson

JJ Rating: B+

One brother invites the other two to join him on a trip. He has it all planed out and where they were to end up was to be a surprise. It ends up being a surprise visit to mommy. ell the other two brothers did not like being tricked into seeing their mother who ran off. The Darjeeling Limited.

What this movie is would be a movie that is very character driven. It is not story driven at all. There’s no story that is full of life. I mean the characters are full of life but the story is very simple. Three brothers don’t get along traveling in India to meet a mother that they have not seen in ages. There’s no villain or time limit. There is only one thing that drives them to get to where they are going and it’s one another’s quirky behavior.

Jason Schwartzman, Owen Wilson and Adrien Brody are the three brothers and they do an awesomely simple job. They do not have a ton of lines so they use facial expressions and hand gestures and other things that seem to be in short supply in other movies. Brody does great job with the facial expressions. Wilson is limited with those because of his get up that prisons his face but he does a great job with the pausing and voice influx. Schwartzman has the eyes working for him along with the odd mustache that makes him look more serious than he actually is. They are rather charming team.

Wes Anderson has a unique ability and very interesting perspective with his movies. When you see a trailer for one of his movies it’s easy to tell it’s his. It has a very surreal feel to it. The movie itself always seems to have a nice room to room montage moment. I like those. They are creatively canvassing most of the characters in the film giving a taste of what it is they are doing now. It gives enough information that their characters are understood. It’s simplistically telling.

The Darjeeling Limited is touching as a whole. There is a dry wit that leads the story along that simply could be missed because people need a laugh track or something to show them that Oooooh wait this will be funny get ready to laugh. There’s no queue or set up in this movie there are just funny moments that are very subtle.

When they do end up meeting their mother that moment is rather touching in a Wes Anderson way. Odd language is used to convey the character’s feelings, which was set up by the previous scenes. There’s a lot of repetition or running gags such as the snake. It’s not like HAHAHAH funny it’s like ha funny and for me that was good enough.

The Darjeeling Limited is so not a movie for everyone. If you’ve seen a Wes Anderson movie before and did not like it then don’t bother. If you did like them then do bother. You might not like it as much as the ones you have seen but it is not a disappointment it’s just a slow moving movie that really doesn’t go anywhere but it made me feel like anywhere it went with those characters would be oddly funny. Oddly because they were not seemingly having a blast they were just entertaining in their reactions to things even though their reactions were not violently expressive. An atomic bomb will get lots of people’s attention and aw but so can a pebble skipping across a lake. The Darjeeling Limited is the pebble. Methodically character driven with characters that were carved by Anderson and his trio of charm The Darjeeling Limited is a surprise of mediocre that is entertaining more so than the movies that spend millions to explode you into loving them.

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