Movie Review: ‘Moonrise Kingdom’

With a cast that includes Frances McDormand, Bruce Willis, Edward Norton, newcomers Jared Gilman and Kara Hayward and frequent Anderson players Bill Murray and Jason Schwartzman, Moonrise Kingdom is everything Wes Anderson lovers expect; the visual style, quirkiness, originality and humor.

Kingdom follows the frenzied search for a small town New England boy scout and the 12-year old girl who falls in love with him. As her parents, the local cop and his troop search for them, a storm threatens to put an end to everything.

From The Royal Tenenbaums to The Life Aquatic to The Fantastic Mr. Fox and now Kingdom, these are the works of a truly original filmmaker and he has a massively rabid fanbase. Unfortunately, I’m not in that fanbase. I like his films and think we definitely need his voice in filmmaking, don’t get me wrong. There are far too many Michael Bay’s out there than there are Wes Anderson’s but with Moonrise Kingdom, as with all of his films, once I left the theater, I didn’t think about the film once. 

His movies don’t have a shelf life in my brain. I thoroughly enjoy them as I’m watching but I just never think about them again. Ever. They have a kind of emotionless aspect and feel and I need that for me to truly love something.

In Kingdom, I absolutely appreciate the look and feel of the film; the yellow hues and the timeless aspect of it where we have no real idea what year it is. I appreciate the performances, although I wish there was more Bill Murray (you can always use more Murray). I appreciate the odd line readings the actors give and the story that takes you in a direction you’d never think.

I absolutely recommend the film, but I just wish it had more… soul.

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