Friday, August 17, 2012

Moonrise Kingdom- a Gem

I recently saw Moonrise Kingdom.... the weekend "Batman Rises" was released.  One can imagine that the theater going experience that weekend was a bit different.  The quick little video about where the exits were, the brighter lights along the aisles.....

The best antidote for this is Moonrise Kingdom.  What a lovely gem of a movie.  Of course, if one gathers such a group of actors, one is expected to deliver.  And Wes Anderson, as director and co-writer, certainly did that.  I haven't seen many of Mr. Anderson's films.  I do like The Royal Tenenbaums.  Even if both Wilson brothers are in it.  (They are offset by the brilliant performances of Gene Hackman, Bill Murray and the incomparable Anjelica Houston.)  But I have, once more, left the path of this topic.

The movie is set in 1964/1965 on an island in New England.  The plot:  Sam (Jared Gilman), as a member of the Boy Scout troop attending summer camp, is attending the local production of the Noah story.  He has a compulsion to seek out someone backstage.  He finds Suzy (Kara Hayward), in a dressing room preparing for her role as one of the birds.  They have an instant connection.  Before Sam is tossed from the dressing room, Suzy and Sam manage to exchange addresses.  Over the course of the fall, winter and spring, they write to each other. 

Meanwhile, let me introduce the other characters:
Bruce Willis- the local constable.
Bill Murray- Suzy's dad and a lawyer.
Frances McDormand: Suzy's mom and lawyer.  (How much litigation can there be on an island?)
Edward Norton: Boy Scout Leader.
Bob Balaban: Narrator.
Tilda Swinton:  Social Services (yes, you read that right!)

Without spoiling the movie too much, Social Services in the form of Tilda Swinton, is called in as Sam is in their custody as a foster child.   She is brilliant in this role, even if it is not a major one.  All the acting is brilliant, understated and wonderful.

But the plot:  Suzy and Sam have decided to run off (or according to the Cohen Brothers in one my favorite movies runnoft) and be together.  This they accomplish being the intelligent youngster that they are.  Of course, they throw the entire community into an uproar.  It is so much fun to watch.  A delightful movie.  One caveat:  Due to subject matter, I would recommend it for ages 16 and above depending on the maturity level of those watching.

One of my very favorite movies in a long time!

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