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Film Review: The Royal Tenenbaums

Quirky American Royalty...

Like most families the Tenenbaums are dysfunctional. The difference here is the three children Chas (Ben Stiller), Margot (Gwyneth Paltrow), Richie (Luke Wilson) are child prodigies and the mother (Anjelica Huston) is a saint. Unfortunately, the father Royal (Gene Hackman) doesn't give a damm about anybody but himself.

The Royal TenenbaumsTime has passed, and the Tenenbaums have fallen on hard times, none more so than Royal and he wants to be reconciled with his family. Oscar Wilde said that children learn to judge their parents, but few learn to forgive them. It is this process that we go through, with the Tenenbaums, exorcising a few family demons on the way.

From the makers of the hilarious Rushmore, the Royal Tenenbaums is a unique film in that there's not a bad performance in sight. Paltrow, Stiller, Bill Murray and Danny Glover are all cast against type and come up trumps. Angelica Huston and Gene Hackman sparkle as the sparring parents. A quirky gem with an offbeat soundtrack, it may not be everybody's cup of tea, but a fine brew nonetheless.

Kevin Smith

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