Royal Tenenbaum and his wife Etheline had three genius children and then they separated. When Royal Tenenbaum announces he is terminally ill, the family reunites. Virtually all memory of the brilliance of the young Tenenbaums was subsequently erased by two decades of betrayal, failure, and disaster.
The Tenenbaums's self-referential outlook, wayward agendas, wanton destructiveness and wishful fantasy make for a highly entertaining spectacle, provided you acknowledge you're watching a churning status quo that will never alter in essentials.
This comedy-drama about a dysfunctional family of eccentric geniuses is exactly the kind of movie America could use. It's funny, poignant, laced with irresistibly flawed characters and focuses on the power of love in a family.