In addition to the fact that âRushmoreâ was Anderson’s groundbreaking film and gave Jason Schwartzman his career, Max Fischer feels like an important reflection on the director’s early work. Anderson’s debut film “Rushmore” and “Bottle Rocket” are full of ambitious dreamers, infamy-hungry people, and a cool, rebellious reputation. More than anything else, however, they want to put on a show and are determined to either succeed or sink into a burst of glory. This attitude also sounds like a statement about the process of making an independent film: lots of ambition, creative problem-solving, a few dedicated allies, and an ego that defies criticism.
Max, the outperforming high school theater impresario, feels like the truest personification of these ideas. Max is the kind of kid who is so focused on directing a junior production of “Serpico” that he can’t pass his lessons. When he was kicked out of the private school, he didn’t give up, writing an original play about the Vietnam War to be produced in his new school, complete with gunshots, miniature planes and a flamethrower.
It’s hard not to see Anderson, a director who clearly enjoys a rich production design and handcrafted aesthetic, at least somewhat identifying with Max. Futile teachers and age-inappropriate friendships aside, Max is, above all, a determined artist with big ideas and a hell of a eye. Its projects will live up to its exacting standards, to hell with resources (and security).