“So, what do you want to be when you grow up?”
“I don’t know…I want go on adventures I think–not get stuck in one place. How about you?
“Go on adventures too, not get stuck too.”
What do you get when you cross the paths of an “emotionally troubled” orphan with a rebellious left-handed friendless girl in knee socks and Sunday shoes? Add a stylized nineteen-sixties setting, a smart-aleck khaki scout troop, and the x-factor quirkiness of Wes Anderson, and you have “Moonrise Kingdom.” I must admit, it’s one of the strangest but most raw, beautiful films I’ve ever seen. My friend Katelyn and I watched it a few months ago, the spontaneous Redbox decision of a late night Walmart run if I recall correctly. But until spontaneously choosing it at Redbox again tonight, I forgot how purely enjoyable the story is. How spontaneous the main characters’ thirteen year-old love. How perfect the narration and witty the sparse dialogue. I wouldn’t recommend running away with your kitten and a pen-pal, but if you’re going for an alluring run-away adventure-tale, then this is it.
It must be the traveler in me, the insatiable wanderlust at the core of my being, that makes me cheer for the wayward teens as they steal out of their houses (or tents as the case may be) in search of adventure or just escape. But even more so, I think what I find most compelling about this quirky, unassuming film is its depiction of commiseration. For as broken as Sam and Suzy’s lives are, their genuine care for each other and simple, unjaded love, however imperfect, gives some interesting perspective about the meaning of friendship.
As the final bars of the children’s chorus play– innocent, light, simple, joyous– and the whimsical credits roll, I can’t help but smile.