5.0, United States/Canada

The Royal Tenenbaums

2001 / Wes Anderson > The Royal Tenenbaums is ridiculous yet tactful, endearing when necessary and endlessly cathartic. It spends some time intriguingly setting up the familial landscape before falling back to let the action commence. It’s not immediately apparent that there’s anything here beyond Anderson’s peculiar directing methods until he blitzkriegs into the last third of the film. One scene after another crescendos—without pomp—into a collusive, heartwarming and/or heartbreaking whole that delivers the knockout punch. A stellar cast and spotless performances, a concise and elegant screenplay and pitch perfect cinematography contribute to a sly and wry final product that supersedes its components into the annals of film history.