(Focus Features) It’s been five years since Wes Anderson’s last live-action feature, The Darjeeling Limited, and his disciples are clamoring for more. From his first indie film, Bottle Rocket, to the modern classic The Royal Tenenbaums, Anderson has infused a whimsical energy into all of his work. He returns true to style with Moonrise Kingdom, his seventh film. The first trailer hints at a familiar cast and style, but a new focus: two unknown leads.
Set in the 1960s at a summer camp, Moonrise Kingdom follows a young romance between a young girl and boy. Sam (Jared Gilman) and Suzy (Kara Hayward) write frantic love letters to each other from their tents, sure that they are right for each other. Packed with Anderson’s signature rhythm and imagery, the tantalizing snippets revealed in the trailer show the young couple running off together. A storm is brewing in the small town, and the peculiar kids create a whirlwind of their own with their disappearance. The adults and children of the town set out on a frantic hunt to find them.
Not only does Anderson write, direct, and produce his own project, but he also works with many of the same collaborators. Noah Baumbach and Owen Wilson have co-written several films with the young auteur; Mark Mothersbaugh composes many of their scores, and a colorful cast of misfits traipses in and out of his stories.
Returning to Moonrise Kingdom are Bill Murray (Rushmore, The Royal Tenenbaums, The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou, The Darjeeling Limited, Fantastic Mr. Fox) and Jason Schwartzman (Rushmore, The Darjeeling Limited, Fantastic Mr. Fox) -- two of Anderson’s favorite actors. Even more exciting are the new members to the eccentric team. Frances McDormand (Fargo), Tilda Swinton (Burn After Reading), Bruce Willis (Pulp Fiction), Edward Norton (Fight Club), and Harvey Keitel (Reservoir Dogs) all bring their innumerable talents to this next film.
The trailer showcases fanciful, stylish costumes, secret pacts, dancing on the beach, a French score, smirking children, desperate adults, and the endless perfection that is Bill Murray. He and McDormand play the young girl’s parents, while Edward Norton looks absolutely hilarious as the naïve camp leader. Anderson followers will recognize his dry humor scattered throughout the trailer, and should be thrilled to see this overwhelmingly brilliant cast.
Anderson is one of the most stylistic filmmakers out there, and his trademark technique is easily recognizable. Like stacks of dioramas, his scenes are symmetrical, meticulously designed, and full of saturated colors. From Margot Tenenbaum to Steve Zissou, his characters are unusual, flawed, and deeply lovable. The childlike wonder that permeates his films looks right at home with a young love story, and fans of Anderson won’t be disappointed.
For Fans of: The Royal Tenenbaums, The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou, Rushmore
Why We're Excited: Wes Anderson, Billy Murray, Stylized Director, Amazing Soundtracks, Most Anticipated Movies 2012
Focus Features' 'Moonrise Kingdom' is slated for a release on May 25, 2012.