Watch Come Together, Wes Anderson’s New Short Film/Commercial Starring Adrien Brody

Why does the hol­i­day sea­son no longer feel com­plete with­out a Wes Ander­son movie? Sev­er­al of his fea­tures have opened in late fall or ear­ly win­ter, sure­ly the most Ander­son­ian time of year. Some have come out right around Christ­mas (The Life Aquat­ic with Steve Zis­sou on the day itself), and some, most notably The Roy­al Tenen­baums, take place par­tial­ly in the sea­son. While it looks as if we’ll have to do with­out a full-length Ander­son pro­duc­tion this Christ­mas, since the past year has report­ed­ly seen him in pre-pro­duc­tion on an as yet unti­tled stop-motion ani­mat­ed movie, the auteur of poignant and fun­ny anachro­nism has nev­er­the­less found time to direct Come Togeth­er, a brand new not-quite-com­mer­cial for “fast fash­ion” retail­er H&M.

Ander­son­’s unusu­al niche in the world of film­mak­ing allows him to both work as per­haps the most metic­u­lous cin­e­mat­ic vision­ary alive, and also to make ads with impuni­ty. We’ve fea­tured the pair of com­mer­cials for the Hyundai Azera he did in 2012, and more recent­ly the less overt Castel­lo Cav­al­can­ti, a sev­en-minute short spon­sored by Pra­da. These are in addi­tion to spots for the likes of Stel­la Artois and Amer­i­can Express, the lat­ter of which starred the direc­tor par­o­dy­ing him­self.

This time reg­u­lar col­lab­o­ra­tor Adrien Brody, pre­vi­ous­ly seen in The Dar­jeel­ing Lim­it­ed and The Grand Budapest Hotel and heard in The Fan­tas­tic Mr. Fox, takes the lead role of Con­duc­tor Ralph, the man in charge of a train that has fall­en far behind its sched­ule as Christ­mas Eve becomes Christ­mas Day. Still, dis­play­ing the same atti­tude most of Ander­son­’s char­ac­ters take toward mat­ters of aes­thet­ics and tra­di­tion, he takes seri­ous­ly indeed the job of mak­ing Christ­mas spe­cial for his pas­sen­gers. We glimpse these pas­sen­gers one at a time through their cab­in win­dows from out­side the train, a sequence rem­i­nis­cent of the cross-sec­tion shots of The Life Aquat­ic’s R/V Bela­fonte.

What will enliv­en the pale greens and mat­te grays of this slight­ly for­lorn but still dogged­ly rolling con­veyance? It takes less than four min­utes, dur­ing which Ralph, and Ander­son, sum­mon all the resources of this unspec­i­fied, dream­like past at their dis­pos­al, to find out. After­ward, Come Togeth­er leaves only one lin­ger­ing ques­tion. The famous­ly metic­u­lous Ander­son who appears to demand a cer­tain vin­tage yet time­less solid­i­ty in every­thing from his set­tings to his devices to his cui­sine to his wardrobe — he can’t pos­si­bly be into fast fash­ion. Can he?

Relat­ed Con­tent:

Wes Anderson’s New Com­mer­cials Sell the Hyundai Azera

Watch Wes Anderson’s Charm­ing New Short Film, Castel­lo Cav­al­can­ti, Star­ring Jason Schwartz­man

A Com­plete Col­lec­tion of Wes Ander­son Video Essays

The Auteurs of Christ­mas: Christ­mas Morn­ing as Seen Through the Eyes of Kubrick, Taran­ti­no, Scors­ese & More

Based in Seoul, Col­in Mar­shall writes and broad­casts on cities and cul­ture. He’s at work on a book about Los Ange­les, A Los Ange­les Primer, the video series The City in Cin­e­ma, the crowd­fund­ed jour­nal­ism project Where Is the City of the Future?, and the Los Ange­les Review of Books’ Korea Blog. Fol­low him on Twit­ter at @colinmarshall or on Face­book.

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