Bill Murray takes on indie roles that suit his quirky personality

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In the entertainment industry, no one is quite as strange as Bill Murray. Known for his roles in films such as “Ghostbusters” and “Groundhog Day,” Murray has been doing exclusively minor roles and cameos for many years.

Appearing in most of Wes Anderson’s films, most recently “Moonrise Kingdom” and the “Grand Budapest Hotel,” Murray has made a name for himself as the quirky-father character.

However, the quirky character he plays is not just a character after all.

Murray has been known to play little pranks on his fans. Four years ago, a legendary post was made on Reddit.com, a popular link sharing site, claiming Murray had taken advantage of an unsuspecting tourist in New York, stealing fries out of his or her McDonald’s bag. After the deed had been done Murray whispered, “No one will ever believe you,” and quickly crossed the road. When asked about this incident, Murray denies everything.

These kinds of hijinks will hopefully be featured in his production, “St. Vincent.” This is surely the story that exemplifys Murray’s quirky personality. The role was made for him.

This is Murray’s first starring role since “Garfield 2,” which he listed as his biggest regret while dying in the film “Zombieland.” Unlike “Garfield 2,” Murray’s newest movie caters to an older and more mature audience.

In “St. Vincent,” Murray’s character, St. Vincent de Van Nuys, is a crude, unapologetic, “loser” who is forced to become Maggie’s (Melissa McCarthy) nanny to pay off his overdrawn bank account. He agrees to watch her son, Oliver (Jaeden Lieberher), after school for $11 an hour.

Remember the “quirky father character” description earlier? It makes another reappearance, but this time, he’s not taking a backseat in the movie.

Through this unusual friendship both Murray and the boy are able to grow and find themselves. For Oliver, this is somewhat of a coming-of-age story.

After seeing Oliver being bullied at school, de Van Nuys begins to teach him to defend himself. Thankfully, there is not a sappy “Karate Kid” montage of learning to fight. De Van Nuys teaches Oliver about life through other ways as well. The pair go to the racetrack and meet a “lady of the night” (Gwyneth Paltrow) with a thick Russian accent.

Created by film newcomer, Theodore Melfi, the bizarre film can be compared to Wes Anderson’s common themes, particularly the ideas of coming of age with special circumstances. Clearly Murray is attracted to this type of story appearing in Anderson’s “Rushmore” and “Moonrise Kingdom.” “St. Vincent” will be the first, however, that he has starred in. This movie does fit Murray in a way other titles couldn’t.

This role appears to be made for Murray as de Van Nuys’s dark sense of humor reflects Murray’s own. In the trailer, de Van Nuys encourages Oliver to be strong by using Hitler’s small stature as an example. It is this kind of humor that probably drew Murray to the film.

St. Vincent’s quirky humor and inspiring story provide the perfect launch pad to propel Murray’s career back to where it was.

Call murray an odd duck, or even a goose, but whatever you do, go see “St. Vincent.”