Hereâ€™s an unlikely equation for an icon: Publicly crash out of professional tennis, fall in love with your (adopted) sister, move into a tent in your childhood home, and ensconce yourself in a camel hair coat. That, of course, is a description of Richie Tenenbaum. At a distance of nearly a decadeâ€”yes itâ€™s been that longâ€”Richie is seared into our memory, at once recognizable and esteemed.
Richie retains his decency even in the face of one of the classic paternal putdowns: â€˜Whyâ€™d you choke out there that day, Baumer?â€™ Our sympathy to Richie extends to Luke Wilson, whose portrait is understated and affecting.
So it is with great regret that we confront the new spectacle of Mr. Wilson as a televised corporate shill. He is not promoting Brooks Brothers sport coats, alas, merely a modest telecommunications giant. Worse, the actor who did more for the headband than anyone since Bjorn Borg is adorned in, of all things, business casual attire. For a nationwide campaign that is doubtless a highly calculated act of non-offensiveness. For those of us who fondly remember the house on Archer Avenue, itâ€™s a rough sight.
The man who memorably said â€˜Iâ€™ve never been so depressed in my life,â€™ is now discussing coverage maps for a network that is as unreliable as one of Raleigh St. Clair’s patients. We donâ€™t begrudge anyone their moment in the commercial sun. Like everything itâ€™s a question of execution. If Wilson wants a master class in the convergence of style and commerce, he need look no further than a credit card ad from a few years ago. It stars and is directed by somebody quite familiar with all matters Tenenbaum: Wes Anderson himself. â€”DAVID COGGINS