Evidently, this story was syndicated all over the place:
Then, the air came out of the tires. Released in 2004, The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou cost $60 million and took in $24 million. The more modestly budgeted Darjeeling Limited grossed $12 million in 2007, $5 million less than Rushmore. These were commercial failures, sure, but the critics were also starting to pile on. Phrases like “too precious,” “cloying” and “detached” popped up more and more in Anderson’s reviews.
In one case of hipster cannibalization, The Hipster Handbook author Robert Lanham, writing for the ubercool Viceland Web site, said of The Life Aquatic: “Wes Anderson doesn’t make movies anymore. He creates overly precious paintings inhabited by emasculated man-children who knit sweater vests to the accompaniment of Belle & Sebastian while fantasizing that they’re macho enough to skin a caribou with a pocketknife. The set pieces to The Life Aquatic are stunning, but watching this film is like visiting the Natural History Museum. It’s a beautiful building, but most of its pleasures are filled with lifeless things.”
For the record, I think Wes is back. Fantastic Mr. Fox was his best film in years. It’s great to see him back on track.