Martin Scorsese was once asked where audiences would find the “next” Martin Scorsese. His answer: “Look to Wes Anderson, the young director of Rushmore.” That’s extremely high praise and a lot of pressure when a legend such as Scorsese knights you in such a way.
In Anderson’s latest film, Moonrise Kingdom, he collaborates with Roman Coppola to tell the tale of a young couple’s escape from the watchful eyes of their guardians in order to be with one another.
This off-beat story is multi-layered, original and wonderfully engaging. There is welcome subtlety in Anderson’s and Coppola’s story telling that manages to grab at you pulling you in with fervour; all of that without employing blatant, obvious symbolism. This is what an art-house film should be!
On top of this, the sheer quantity of talent present in the film representing the quirky, charismatic characters demanded the highest level of direction. Anderson brilliantly allows each actor to showcase their talents, while adding his own personal flair to spice things up.
Every member of the cast, including Edward Norton, Bruce Willis, Tilda Swinton, Bill Murray, Frances McDormand, Jason Swartzman, and Harvey Kietel brought their A-game. The young first-time actors playing the love-struck couple, Jared Gilman and Kara Hayward, both displayed a very natural, youthful innocence.
The only flaw can be found in the lack of enunciation from both Hayward and Gilman. Anderson should have caught this during the shooting process as it was difficult to understand the youngsters during a few scenes – Gilman in particular.
Bottom Line: Prepare to have your expectations exceeded while being wrapped in a beautiful film about love in its most innocent form.
Runtime: 94 minutes