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15 Greatest Wes Anderson Moments

Shark Tale

The Moment: The crew finally encounter the majestic Jaguar Shark, which circles the craft before swimming away through the briny depths. Despite the amateur puppetry on display, it's impossible not to feel slightly awe-struck at this point. And when the crew's hands begin to land on Steve's shoulders… well, we're tearing up a bit.

The Music:
Staralfur by Sigur Ros is a suitably stirring accompaniment to this climactic moment. No wonder Steve doesn't want to blow the shark up any more… even if they weren't out of dynamite.

Why It's Great: As Eleanor Zissou so succinctly puts it, "it is beautiful, Steve." "Yeah," replies her husband, "it's pretty good, isn't it?" Our thoughts exactly.

Sweet Revenge

The Moment: Rushmore 's love triangle comes to the boil when Max Fisher pipes a swarm of angry bees into Herman Blume's hotel room, sparking a montage of revenger and counter-revenge between the two rivals.

The Music:
The Who's A Quick One While He's Away kicks in, just as Blume begins to formulate the idea of payback. "You are forgiven" sings Roger Daltrey, in pleasingly inappropriate fashion. Ain't no forgiveness going on between this pair!

Why It's Great:
Bill Murray's grudging smile at the beginning of this sequence capture the mood perfectly. The two men might be at each other's throats, but there's no disguising the fact that both of them are rather enjoying themselves…

Get Off My Boat

The Moment: With his boat overrun by marauding Filipino pirates, Steve Zissou is finally pushed to breaking point, grabbing the nearest available firearm and sending his assailants packing in a hail of gunfire. All while wearing a pastel-blue dressing gown. That's what we call a look.

The Music: As soon as Steve stars blasting, Iggy Pop and the Stooges kick in with a rousing rendition of Search And Destroy. We defy you not to punch the air at this one!

Why It's Great:
A real crowd-pleaser of a sequence, with Iggy Pop's primal howl the perfect accompaniment to Bill Murray's grand "fuck you" moment. The bit where he throws his empty pistol after the departing pirates is the icing on the cake.

By Way Of The Green Line Bus

The Moment: Margot Tenenbaum emerges from the Green Line bus in her signature fur coat, before making her way across the tarmac to the waiting Richie. The most iconic Anderson sequence by some distance…

The Music:
German chanteuse Nico croons lilting ballad These Days , capturing the defiantly whimsical tone present in so much of Anderson's work.

Why It's Great: Everything about it is perfectly measured, from Alec Baldwin's honeyed narration, to the signature use of slow-motion, while the choice of song is simply inspired. A hauntingly beautiful scene.

Final Curtain

The Moment: Rushmore comes to a close in spectacular style as Max finally gets to share a dance with Miss Cross, stepping on to the dancefloor in slow motion just before the final curtain falls.

The Music:
Ooh La La by The Faces, possibly the most apposite choice of music in Anderson's storied career. "I wish I knew what I knew now, when I was younger." Don't we all…

Why It's Great:
It's just a superb ending to a superb film, as every loose end is neatly wrapped up (the revelation that Blume's kids have been packed off to military school is particularly pleasing) and Max finally gets a happy ending of sorts. And as we mentioned above, the choice of music is really great.

George Wales
George is GR's resident movie news person, based out of London. He understands that all men must die, but he'd rather not think about it.