Moonrise Kingdom

Moonrise Kingdom is a 2012 American coming-of-age comedy-drama film directed by Wes Anderson, written by Anderson and Roman Coppola, and starring Bruce Willis, Edward Norton, Bill Murray, Frances McDormand, Tilda Swinton, Jason Schwartzman, Bob Balaban, and introducing Jared Gilman and Kara Hayward. Largely set on the fictional island of New Penzance somewhere off the coast of New England, it tells the story of an orphan boy (Gilman) who escapes from a scouting camp to unite with his pen pal and love interest, a girl with aggressive tendencies (Hayward). Feeling alienated from their guardians and shunned by their peers, the lovers abscond to an isolated beach. Meanwhile, the island's police captain (Willis) organizes a search party of scouts and family members to locate the runaways.

Moonrise Kingdom
Theatrical release poster
Directed byWes Anderson
Written byWes Anderson
Roman Coppola
Produced byWes Anderson
Scott Rudin
Steven Rales
Jeremy Dawson
Starring
CinematographyRobert Yeoman
Edited byAndrew Weisblum
Music byAlexandre Desplat
Production
companies
American Empirical Pictures
Indian Paintbrush
Distributed byFocus Features
Release dates
  • May 16, 2012 (2012-05-16) (Cannes)
  • May 25, 2012 (2012-05-25) (United States)
Running time
94 minutes[1]
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$16 million
Box office$68.3 million

In crafting their screenplay, Anderson and Coppola drew from personal experiences and memories of childhood fantasies as well as films including Melody (1971) and The 400 Blows (1959). Auditions for child actors took eight months, and filming took place in Rhode Island over three months in 2011.

Moonrise Kingdom premiered at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival and received critical acclaim, with its themes of young love, child sexuality, juvenile mental health, and the Genesis flood narrative being praised. Critics cited the film's color palette and use of visual symmetry as well as the use of original composition by Alexandre Desplat to supplement existing music by Benjamin Britten. It was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay and the Golden Globe for Best Musical or Comedy. In 2016, the BBC included the film in its list of greatest films of the twenty-first century.


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