Moonrise Kingdom (USA 2012) 94 min. Directed by Wes Anderson. With Jared Gilman, Kara Hayward, Bruce Willis, Edward Norton, Bill Murray, Frances McDormand, Tilda Swinton, et al.
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If it was good enough to open the Cannes Film Festival this year then it’s good enough to open the 2012-2013 MUN Cinema Series. It’s hard to describe Wes Anderson’s cinematic style: it’s quirky, all right. But not too below the surface of his eccentric characters and plots there lies a sadness that comes with the inevitability of adulthood. So it is that MOONRISE KINGDOM is in many ways a celebration of youth, or, more importantly, the freedom and spontaneity that attend to youth—and tragically fade with experience. Young moody Suzy and thoughtful Sam are drawn to each other, seeking escape in the ‘sixties on an island as magical as the one over which Prospero once ruled. Indeed, Anderson’s world is stamped with Shakespearean blocking figures--confused adults, menacing officials, and all manner of obstacles on the path of young love. Naturally, a full cast of eccentric actors show up to remind us we are in Anderson Land, especially Bill Murray who plays Suzy’s gin-soaked dad. This is such a wonderful, sweet, poignant film that you are bound to be moved not only by the fate of the marvelous young actors but by the imagination that invented them and the brave new world they dare to inhabit.
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