Moonrise Kingdom is an amusing contrast of sorts.
It has a simple love/adventure story laced with a warped sense of humor and punctuated by surprising yet aptly placed violent scenes.
It revolves around an odd couple – two unpopular misfits who decided to run away together.
It’s located in a town with its own surprises – secrets, schemes, and a boy scout troop that acts more like a military unit brew trouble underneath the facade of small-town simplicity.
It was able to vividly capture the period of its time, with signature Wes Anderson symmetrical framing.
All of this makes for a charming, detailed, gorgeously shot, and well-executed film. It balances deadpan humor with melancholy, and reality with the surreal.
This is combined with great performances from the whole cast, but the two leads steal the show from the veterans. Bruce Willis has redeemed himself and Edward Norton is excellent. Tilda Swinton, who only had very few scenes in the movie, was able to stand out.
Moonrise Kingdom has everything that you want in a Wes Anderson film. It’s idiosyncratic but not quirky for quirkiness’ sake. The movie presents an exotic and offbeat world but grounded by endearing characters and a universal theme – the joy and pains of growing up.
There’s not much depth, but it’s a small story with an unmistakable charm that can entertain grown-ups, kids, and Anderson fans and non-fans.
Moonrise Kingdom is an odd yet endearing, funny yet melancholic, innocent yet dark love story that is small in scale but big in impact.