Observatory Cinema \\ The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou (15)

Wes Anderson | 2004 | 15 | USA | Touchstone Pictures

On the closing night of AND’s Observatory Cinema, we presented an outdoor screening of Wes Anderson’s The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou (2004). Renowned and eccentric oceanographer Steve Zissou (Bill Murray) has sworn vengeance upon the rare ‘jaguar shark’ that devoured his best friend and chief diver Esteban, in this comedy-drama caper. 

Zissou (a parody of and homage to French diving pioneer Jacques Cousteau, to whom the film is dedicated) is joined on his aging research vessel, the Belafonte, by Ned (Owen Wilson), a man who believes Zissou to be his father; pregnant journalist Jane (Cate Blanchett); safety expert and Brazilian guitarist Pelé dos Santos (Seu Jorge); and first mate Klaus (Willem Dafoe). 

As they travel the seas, Team Zissou are confronted with the precarious nature of human existence, running into pirates, Steve’s oceanographic nemesis Alistair (Jeff Goldblum) and perhaps worse, Steve’s estranged wife Eleanor (Anjelica Huston). Shot in Anderson’s instantly recognisable visual style and featuring a soundtrack of 60s-80s rock alongside Portuguese covers of David Bowie tracks, The Life Aquatic is a modern cult classic.


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