Wes Anderson makes great films and Jarvis Cocker makes great music. But in the credits of Anderson's new film, Asteroid City, Cocker may have stolen the show. And that is meant as no offense to Anderson or Cocker or the film itself.
All cards left open here, I am a huge fan of Wes Anderson's films. He is a unique filmmaker who others seem incapable of replicating or simply don't try because of the way Anderson goes about making films. Actors like working with him, devotees of his films get rightfully defensive of any criticism of what he does. If you don't like his films, dear critic, then that is on you and not on Anderson or his style.
But Jarvis Cocker (frontman of the excellent band, Pulp) has two extremely important songs in Anderson's new film and the last of the two might accidentally steal the ending. The first of Cocker's two songs in the film - he co-created the tune along with Richard Hawley and Anderson - is "Dear Alien (Who Art in Heaven)" which comes at an important scene late in the movie. I don't want to give away too much by explaining the situation.
Wes Anderson rightfully uses Jarvis Cocker again in Asteroid City
The second song comes in the credits and you absolutely must wait for the song. A quick aside here: If you don't already wait until the end of the credits for films, you should; Lots of people are involved in the making of movies besides the ones you see on the screen and work just as hard in making the film good. Anywho, there is something that happens at the end of the film that gives Cocker's song even more depth.
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The tune is called "You Can’t Wake Up If You Don’t Fall Asleep." For those who know Cocker's signing style extremely well, you pretty much know he can do anything. But most people don't know Cocker or his music well (sadly), so it's more of a treat if you see Asteroid City and already know Pulp or Jarvis Cocker.
The song's beginning almost sounds like a Leonard Cohen tune. There is nothing wrong with that. But Cocker has a better range, of course, and the song takes on a different life than you might expect. It's brilliant and a brilliant choice by Wes Anderson to have in the credits.
Not that Anderson doesn't know Cocker's music. Anderson had Cocker involved in his Fantastic Mr. Fox and The French Dispatch films as well. Two great artists working together? Who would want more?