In one word: frustrating. Wes Anderson’s earlier films were so inspired, so obviously the work of an artist with a particular vision who was in complete control that he’s been coasting on them ever since.

It’s just plain depressing that his last two films, The Life Aquatic and The Darjeeling Limited, still so early in his career, already feel like tepid rehashings. He can’t possibly be creatively bankrupt already.

Of course, they look beautiful. Anderson’s films are always full of minute detail in production design. And the cinematography is top notch.

But the scripts, my God, the scripts – once his strong point, now flat, unfunny messes. It’s worth noting that his last two films were not co-written by earlier collaborator Owen Wilson.

There’s nothing particularly bad about Darjeeling. That’s the problem. Anderson takes no risks in the film. It just plods along.

There are minor, half-hearted attempts at deadpan humor, but they’re so deadpan as to barely register. You keep expecting that this is the part where it gets good. And you keep waiting. And it never does.

Of course, like any director with a personal touch and a great body of work, like Tarantino or Scorsese, even a mediocre Anderson movie is more interesting to watch than just about anything else out there. But that’s hardly praise for the maker of Rushmore and The Royal Tenenbaums, two of the finest movies of the last decade.

The film stars Owen Wilson, Adrien Brody and Jason Schwartzman, three estranged brothers who reconnect for a spiritual journey through India. Look for a cameo by director Barbet Schroeder as a mechanic.

Extras: Hotel Chevalier, a short which sheds light on Schwartzman’s character’s alluded-to romance.

Grade: B

The Darjeeling Limited is currently available.