Curtain: The January Newspaper Movie of the Month
'The French Dispatch'
Actually, the full title of Wes Anderson's comedy is "The French Dispatch of the Liberty, Kansas Evening Sun." Ergo, why we forced ourselves to watch it. Presumably a newspaper movie, described in promotions in fact as "a love letter to journalists." Currently available in theaters and on streaming platforms. What can we say about it? This: There is a scene toward the beginning in which an insane artist creates what is supposed to be a portrait of a nude woman by smearing paint on a canvas the way you might brush paint on a wall. No one understands what the painting is although everyone nods as if they appreciate it. This, we are sad to say, is "The French Dispatch," which by the way is more an ode to The New Yorker than to newspapers. An impressive ensemble cast, exquisite cinematography. Beyond that, 107 minutes of life that you'll never get back. (We must acknowledge, other critics including our own Dann Gire, are much kinder. Trust us. They don't know what they're talking about.)