Director: Wes Anders0n
Writer: Wes Anderson, Roman Coppola
Cast: Kara Hayward, Jared Gilman, Edward Norton, Bruce Willis, Frances McDormand, Bill Murray, Tilda Swinton, Jason Schwartzman, Harvey Keitel, Bob Balaban
A small island in New England. Suzy (Kara Hayward) lives with her family and spends most of her time looking through binoculars, while Sam (Jared Gilman) is a khaki scout currently at Camp Lebanon. The two of them are very much in love, so they decided to run away together. When Scout Master Ward (Edward Norton) notices the absence of his charge, he informs Captain Sharp (Bruce Willis) and soon the entire island is involved in the search for the two kids.
Since I didn’t like Fantastic Mr. Fox that much, I was a bit worried about Moonrise Kingdom. But my worries were for nothing – I really, really, really loved this film. It was sweet and fun and amusing. Plus, it had a wonderful cast. Perfect.
Moonrise Kingdom has all the whimsical trademark Wes Anderson weirdness and it comes together perfectly. The set and costume design is awesome and I particularly loved the color schemes. Anderson also really highlights it with his long, sprawling shots that take you through the sets bit by bit. Starting with Suzy’s house, to the church production of Noye’s Fludde to the scout camp (and that shot in the beginning where Scout Master Ward inspects his camp is the sum total of what is crazy about scouts in general), this movie just looked fantastic.
I also really liked the characters. All of them in their general and more particular strangeness, but especially Sam and Suzy were at the same time the most obnoxious teenagers that ever lived and the sweetest kids you could imagine and somehow I just ended up enchanted by them.
To round it all off, there were the dialogues that were just great and delivered by an amazing cast. I mean, a film that suprises you with a cameo by Harvey Keitel can practically do no wrong anyway, but it would be really hard to put a better cast together in any case. Starting with Edward Norton (thank you for making a good movie, btw, I was beginning to get very, very worried), but also especially Frances McDormand and Tilda Swinton and Bill Murray and Bruce Willis and… just everyone.
In short, it’s just a film to make you happy, filled with so many great details (The book covers!) that you can’t really point them all out.
Summarising: Definitely recommended.