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The French Dispatch

classified 15 PS

Fri 22 - Sun 31 Oct

Wes Anderson
Timothée Chalamet, Léa Seydoux, Willem Dafoe
103 mins, Partially Subtitled, 2021, Germany USA
Primary language

Wes Anderson’s delightful, star-studded homage to journalism and literary magazines is a feast for the eyes and a whip-smart comic delight.

The French Dispatch, a high-brow magazine based in the imagined Gallic town of Blasé-sur-Ennui, has reached its end. Its founder (Bill Murray) has died and his beloved creation looks set to shut down operations. In doing so, its staff reflect nostalgically on the publication’s halcyon days, when the writers were as celebrated as the subjects they covered. There’s the art critic (Tilda Swinton) who regales with the story of a jailed painter’s (Benicio Del Toro) obsession with his muse (Léa Seydoux); a political correspondent (Frances McDormand) whose ‘current affairs’ once included a young insurgent (Timothée Chalamet) during a student protest; and the rarefied food critic (Jeffrey Wright) who becomes quite the pot-au-feu when he finds himself caught up in a kidnapping plot.

Anderson is at the top of his game with this dazzling, breathlessly inventive and irrepressibly witty tribute to the New Yorker magazine and its writers. Along with his trademark shooting style – exquisitely-conceived symmetrical compositions – there’s deft use of aspect ratio and seamless monochrome-to-colour shifts. And the whole thing is carried along by regular collaborator Alexandre Desplat’s wonderful score. All in all, it’s an absolute treat!

The Sun 31 Oct 13:40 screening will have an introduction from Jay Clarke, a Bristol-based Storyboard Artist who worked on The French Dispatch. Jay's career began on the Oscar-winning Wallace & Gromit and the Curse of the WereRabbit. Other Aardman animations include the Shaun the Sheep series and movie. This background in animation led to his role as Lead Storyboard Artist for The Grand Budapest Hotel, which won the Silver Bear at the Berlin Film Festival & Best Production Design Oscar. Clarke storyboarded all of Anderson’s next animated film Isle of Dogs. He has worked with studios ranging from Universal to the newly formed Netflix Animation Studios. In 2014 he was honoured by the Art Directors Guild of America. Most recently he was Storyboard Artist on the The French Dispatch, screening now!

  • Screenings of The French Dispatch on Wed 27 Oct are part of our Cinébites deal: get 30% off any main dish in the Café & Bar with a valid cinema ticket.
  • Please note: the screening of The French Dispatch on Sat 23 Oct 15:20 is a Relaxed Screening.
  • Socially Distanced screening of The French Dispatch takes place on Thu 28 Oct 15:40. Available seating is reduced to 25% of the screen capacity for additional comfort.

Audio Description
Baby screening
Cinébites meal deal
Certificate to be announced
Descriptive Subtitling
Introductory Talk
PR Intro
Pre-recorded Intro
Pre-recorded Q&A
Partially Subtitled
Q&A Session
Relaxed Screening
25% Socially Distanced screening
Times TBC
To be confirmed