On a small island off the coast of New England in the 1960s, a young boy and girl fall in love. The pair decide to run away together, to trek across the island. Various factions of authority begin to search for the young pair, as a storm is set to hit the island…
Moonrise Kingdom is ultimately a satisfying picture, and one that is difficult to fault. The screenplay,by Wes Anderson and Roman Coppola is fantastic. The children in the film feel well-developed and authentic. Their interactions with both their peers and the adults are both amusing and believable. The beauty of the screenplay is the way in which it effectively ties in additional strands to the central narrative. These plots are definitely secondary to the main focus on Sam and Suzy, yet work well to inform and give the supporting cast depth.
Moonrise Kingdom presents an image of childhood which is utterly convincing. The seriousness with which Sam and Suzy approach their situation seems entirely fitting. Most viewers will be able to recollect the gravity of seemingly important issues from the childhood. Moreover, the young people in the film are depicted has having intellect and strong personalities, something that too often is missing from other child characters in movies.
Anderson has captured a sense of a 1960s childhood whilst retaining his own style. All the familiar Wes Anderson traits are present in Moonrise Kingdom. The off-beat style associated with the filmmaker is apparent throughout the film, including the memorable use of music.
Performances are fantastic overall. Jared Gilman stands out in particular as Sam. Gilman brings a solemnity to the role that works perfectly. Kara Hayward is also great as Suzy. The supporting cast is populated with big names; Bill Murray, Frances McDormand, Bruce Willis and Edward Norton are well cast in their respective roles.
Moonrise Kingdom will entertain and amuse audiences with its charm. One not to miss.