Short Film Friday: Castello Cavalcanti (Wes Anderson)

Now while this is an advertisement (barely) for fashion house Prada, this week’s short is a beautiful piece of film making by cult-favourite director Wes Anderson. Taking place in 1955, Jason Schwartzman is a slick American race car driver who crashes mid-race in what turns out to be his ancestral home. While there is very little actual plot, the entire production oozes with Wes Anderson’s love of colour and quirk. This is not Anderson’s first commercial. In fact, it is his second for Prada this year (Prada Candy L’Eau was released in April), and a few years back he made this gem of an American Express ad. Those two previous efforts, however, felt like commercials. They overflowed with Andersonisms, and while artistic, they could never pass as a true act of film making. With Castello Cavalcanti, however, we have almost 8 minutes of pure bliss. Schwartzman understands Anderson’s writing style like few other actors (with the exception of Bill Murray of course), so it is wonderful seeing the two collaborate on such a minor production. In scale, it is very reminiscent of Anderson’s other Schwartzman starring short: Hotel Chevalier. Both pieces take place in a single location with minimal exposition. They place you into a situation and you understand the context immediately. Wes Anderson’s The Grand Budapest Hotel will be coming out in 2014, but if you are finding it hard to wait, Castello Cavalcanti will certainly satiate your cravings, if only for 8 minutes.


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