I am taking a bit of a break this weekend in the form of coasting at half-speed as I just needed a bit of a mental break more than anything else. I went and rented a couple of movies, Moonrise Kingdom and Seeking a Friend For the End of the World . I have blogged in the past about Seeking a Friend which I thought was one of the top films of 2012. When I went to the checkout the lady at the register exclaimed, “Oh, you picked two of my favorite films!” We ended up in a short discussion about them as I haven’t seen this one until now.
Two things you can count on with a Wes Anderson film: 1. It will be good and 2. It will be quirky. You just won’t know how quirky until you watch it. He definitely has his own brand of filmmaking which is good because Hollywood needs more of that not less.
I have to say though that maybe during the first 1/4 of the film I wasn’t that impressed. In fact, I was growing a bit disappointed. I mean any film with Bruce Willis, Bill Murray, Frances McDormand, and Edward Norton, gives you a certain level of expectation from the start. Anderson teamed with Roman Coppola on this and true to form they didn’t use any of the stars in the fashion you would’ve guessed. Still, the first 1/4 was a bit slow and then suddenly it kicked in and when it did the payoff was nice.
The story is of two kids on a remote island who runoff together and the chaos they create on the island in the process. It is also a bit of an analogy about life. I won’t give anything away but that is easy to gather. The true movers though of this film aren’t the big stars but rather the two new actors cast in the lead and also all the other kids involved. There are a couple scout troops that play a central role. All these kids are what keep you glued to this movie.
If you are a film buff though, you will chuckle to yourself at different points because Anderson pays homage to like a dozen films in this one. He’ll test your film trivia knowledge on everything from Shawshank Redemption to Beach Blanket Bingo. I also like the little musical thing he did during credits at the end which ties in with the film. This isn’t giving away much but during the film three boys keep listening to this recording of how musical variations are done and musical parts break down. During the credits, the lead boy actor introduces different instruments as he brings those variations together.
If you like Wes Anderson, you will like this movie. While this is worth the rent, it isn’t his best but still good. If you haven’t seen a Wes Anderson film I would say start with The Royal Tenenbaums which has an unbelievable cast and great story or The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou. Roman Coppola is joining his sister and moving into his own with this film. It was an interesting team really. Like I said, not their greatest movie but definitely worth the rental fee.