Friday, September 21, 2012

Moonrise Kingdom

Wes Anderson: Moonrise Kingdom (2012).

Moonrise Kingdom / Moonrise Kingdom.
    US © 2012 Moonrise LLC. P: Wes Anderson, Jeremy Dawson, Steven M. Rales, Scott Rudin.
    D: Wes Anderson. DP: Robert D. Yeoman – Camera: Aaton A-Minima, Zeiss Super Speed and Canon Lenses, Aaton Xterà, Zeiss Super Speed and Canon Lenses – Laboratory: Technicolor, New York (NY), USA – Film negative format: 16 mm (Kodak Vision3 200T 7213) – Cinematographic process: Digital Intermediate (2K) (master format), Super 16 (source format) – Printed film format: 35 mm (blow-up), D-Cinema – 1.85:1. DI: Technicolor, New York. PD: Adam Stockhausen. AD: Gerald Sullivan. Set dec: Kris Moran. Cost: Kasia Walicka-Maimone. Makeup: Björn Rehbein. Hair: Frank Barbosa. VFX team: big – Look FX, Fantasy II Film Effects. M: Alexandre Desplat. S: Craig Henighan. ED: Andrew Weisblum. Casting: Douglas Abel.
    C: Bruce Willis as Captain Sharp, Edward Norton as Scout Master Ward, Bill Murray as Mr. Bishop, Frances McDormand as Mrs. Bishop, Tilda Swinton as Social Services – Introducing Jared Gilman as Sam, Kara Hayward as Suzy – With Jason Schwartzman as Cousin Ben – and Bob Balaban as the Narrator.
    94 min.
    Released by Atlantic Film with Finnish / Swedish subtitles by Janne Kauppila / Heidi Nyblom Kuorikoski.
    2K DCP viewed at Tennispalatsi 9, Helsinki, 21 September 2012.

The title of the movie refers to the harbour of forbidden love of Sam and Suzy where they establish their private model scout camp.

Of Wes Anderson's films I'm an admirer of his early, more sober movies (Bottle Rocket, Rushmore) but had such a hard time relating to his relentlessly tongue-in-cheek approach to The Royal Tenenbaums and The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou that I skipped The Darjeeling Limited and Fantastic Mr. Fox.

But because Moonrise Kingdom is such an enchanting and engaging movie I realize I need to see them, as well.

The official synopsis: "Set on an island off the coast of New England in the summer of 1965, Moonrise Kingdom tells the story of two 12-year-olds who fall in love, make a secret pact, and run away together into the wilderness. As various authorities try to hunt them down, a violent storm is brewing off-shore – and the peaceful island community is turned upside down in every which way. Bruce Willis plays the local sheriff, Captain Sharp. Edward Norton is a Khaki Scout troop leader, Scout Master Ward. Bill Murray and Frances McDormand portray the young girl’s parents, Mr. and Mrs. Bishop. The cast also includes Tilda Swinton, Jason Schwartzman, and Bob Balaban; and introduces Jared Gilman and Kara Hayward as Sam and Suzy, the boy and girl." (from the Production Notes).

Wes Anderson has honed a unique style which is like no other, and he is now one of the most personal image-makers in contemporary cinema. His style resembles naivism, and his images sometimes border on kitsch, but they are actually very refined, and he discovers new worlds for imagination. There are connections to the tableau tradition of early cinema. The narrative and the imagery are also influenced by cartoons and animations. Wes Anderson's colour world has a tendency to the low saturation of the pastel and to brown hues in broken colours. His images are rich in inventions, and there is always a lot to see and to discover.

While his characters are simplified on the surface and the presentation is reduced, there is nothing condescending there, and the world of emotions is complex and partly mysterious, as in real life. The performances have nothing to do with psychological realism, though.

The soundtrack selection (see beyond the jump break) is very original and charming, including long excerpts from Benjamin Britten's "young person's guides" to music.

Having seen yesterday Beasts of the Southern Wild I was surprised to see again a deluge movie with direct references to the saga of Noah, here also as "Noye's Fludde". A deluge is the climax of Moonrise Kingdom.

Interestingly, both Beasts of the Southern Wild and Moonrise Kingdom have been shot on photochemical 16 mm film, probably because of the warm quality of the colour. Also in Moonrise Kingdom this quality has been reproduced in the digital intermediate very well.
"The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra, op. 34: Themes A.-F."
Composed by Benjamin Britten
Performed by New York Philharmonic
Conducted by Leonard Bernstein

"Khaki Scout Marches (Camp Ivanhoe Medley)"
Written by Mark Mothersbaugh
Performed by Peter Jarvis and His Drum Corps

"Playful Pizzicato, from Simple Symphony, op. 4"
Composed by Benjamin Britten
Performed by English Chamber Orchestra

(Recorded in September 1952, released posthumously in January 1953)
Written by Hank Williams and Fred Rose
Performed by Hank Williams

"Noye's Fludde, op. 59 : Noye, Noye, Take Thou Thy Company, op. 59"
Composed by Benjamin Britten

"The Heroic Weather Conditions, part 1 (A Veiled Mist)"
Composed by Alexandre Desplat

"The Heroic Weather Conditions, part 2 (Smoke/Fire)"
Composed by Alexandre Desplat

"The Heroic Weather Conditions, part 3 (The Salt Air)"
Composed by Alexandre Desplat

"A Midsummer's Night Dream, op. 64: Act 2: On the Ground, Sleep Sound"
Music by Benjamin Britten
Performed by The London Symphony Orchestra

"Long Gone Lonesome Blues"
Written and Performed by Hank Williams

"Volière, from Le Carnaval des animaux"
Composed by Camille Saint-Saëns
Performed by New York Philharmonic
Conducted by Leonard Bernstein

"Le temps de l'amour"
Written by Andre Salvet and Jacques Dutronc
Performed by Françoise Hardy
(P) 1965 Vogue

"An die Musik"
Music by Franz Schubert
Performed by Alexandra Rübner (soprano) and Christophe Manien (piano)
from Huomaa minut (2004)

"Ramblin' Man"
Written and Performed by 'Hank Williams'

"Songs from Friday Afternoons, op. 7 (Old Abram Brown)"
Composed by Benjamin Britten

"The Heroic Weather Conditions, part 4: Thunder"
Composed by Alexandre Desplat

"The Heroic Weather Conditions, part 5: Lightning"
Composed by Alexandre Desplat

"The Heroic Weather Conditions, part 6: Rain"
Composed by Alexandre Desplat

"Noye's Fludde, op. 59: The Spacious Firmament on High"
Composed by Benjamin Britten

"Noye's Fludde, op. 59: Noye Take Thy Wife Anone"
Composed by Benjamin Britten

"Songs from Friday Afternoons, op. 7 (Cuckoo!)"
Composed by Benjamin Britten

"The Heroic Weather Conditions; part 7 : After the Storm"
Composed by Alexandre Desplat

"Soave sia il vento"
from "Cosi tan tutte, K.588"
Music by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

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