In one of his reviews Roger Ebert once asked, something similar to this, what does The Life Aquatic of Steve Zissou (2004) and The Fantastic Mr. Fox (2009) have in common. To state the obvious the answer to the question would be Wes Anderson, but this is not what Mr. Ebert was really asking. According to the French theory of the Auteur, the director who is the driving force of the movie has a commonality or commonalities among his film. Mr. Ebert could find none between the films of Wes Anderson. I would like to suggest that the films of Wes Anderson are about families directly or indirectly. His newest film Moonrise Kingdom (2012) is no different.
A friend once mentioned to me, that the films of Wes Anderson are like live action Charlie Brown movies. I could not agree more, and Moonrise Kingdom is the most Charlie Brown-ish of them all. Look at the way both Charlie Brown and Wes Anderson films have bold, but not obnoxious, colors. Also there is the similarity in the music, I believe mostly in this film then the others. There is also a dog in this film whose name happens to be Snoopy. I think this view of Wes Anderson films gives a good perspective on his films.
This film is about Sam and Suzy. They both live in a small town on a small island during the 1960’s. They first meet the summer before, becoming pen pals all through the next summer. They plan to rendezvous one summer day. They both have to make escape plans to meet each other, for it is like each is escaping from a prison, in some sense. Both characters are odd ducks in their respective families. This oddness never seems to be dealt with overtly by the other members of the family. This may be because the other members of the families’ are in denial of having an odd member of the family, or; the other family members to not know how to deal with this oddness. There seems to be much going on that is left unsaid by various characters, the parents of Suzy. With this it gives the characters more depth, by not dealing with things. This also gives the viewer something to ponder after the movie. Since, Sam and Suzy have run off together and told no one, this turns the town on its head. This turning the town on its head leads to some hilarious events and moments in the film. One also feels, because of this, the town is a better place then it was before.
If you are familiar with Wes Anderson films you’ll feel right at home just as I did from opening image to the closing image. Of course this is assuming you like the films of Wes Anderson. I feel this is one of his best films out of his last few. With that said, run do not walk to go see this one.