Moonrise Kingdom (2012)

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Moonrise Kingdom: Directed by Wes Anderson. With Bruce Willis, Edward Norton, Bill Murray, Frances McDormand. A pair of young lovers flee their New England town, which causes a local search party to fan out to find them.

“Despite the dreadful title, Moonrise Kingdom is simply wonderful. u003cbr/u003eu003cbr/u003eSince his flying start with Bottle Rocket and the triumph of Rushmore, I felt that Wes Anderson had rather tottered off a true path. The Royal Tenenbaums was hit and miss, The Darjeeling Limited was too twee, and The Life Aquatic was simply AWFUL. I take against ANY film that wastes Bill Murray.u003cbr/u003eu003cbr/u003eMoonrise Kingdom doesnu0026#39;t repeat that error. Despite covering ground Andersonu0026#39;s already visited to an extent in Rushmore, MK looks at a teenage crush with fresh eyes, and surrounds it with a fantastic cast of oddballs and misfits. Unlike his films where the characters are irritatingly quirky for the sake of it, these oddballs seem organic to their strange island home. Star among them is Ed Norton as Scout Master Ward, who looks as if heu0026#39;s having the time of his life in shorts and woggles, in charge of a troop described as u0026#39;beige lunaticsu0026#39;.u003cbr/u003eu003cbr/u003eBruce Willis, Frances McDormand and Bill Murray all play their parts but never feel as though theyu0026#39;re elbowing for the spotlight, which keeps the mood kind, befitting the hearts of all involved in the search for runaway scout, Sam, and his pen-pal, Suzy. u003cbr/u003eu003cbr/u003eVisually, itu0026#39;s a feast of saturated colour and fabulous design, but – as with the best of Wes Anderson – the devilu0026#39;s always in the detail. The laughs come from minutely observed accessories (keep an eye on the scoutsu0026#39; badges!) and from throwaway truths. And the soundtrack is a great mix of wistful Western and classical pieces. Definitely buyable. u003cbr/u003eu003cbr/u003eAnderson flirts with surrealism, but never gets Burtonesque, controlling his story with a firmer hand and to better effect. His situations might be bizarre, but the people in them are always painfully, wonderfully human. Itu0026#39;s also a rare film – one you could watch with your grandmother or your grandchildren, with only a couple of moments where young eyes would have to be covered, and no real violence or swearing.u003cbr/u003eu003cbr/u003eThere is an overwhelming feeling of innocence and good will throughout.u003cbr/u003eu003cbr/u003eI loved it from the opening frames, and it only got better from there.”

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