>> Moonrise Kingdom (BLU-RAY) (2012)

Title: Moonrise Kingdom

Genre: Comedy, Drama, Romantic

Starring: Bruce Willis, Edward Norton, Bill Murray, Frances McDormand, Kara Hayward

Director: Wes Anderson

Studio: Universal Studios

Runtime: 94 minutes

Release Date: October 16, 2012

Format: BLU-RAY, DVD

Discs: 2

MPAA Rating: PG-13

Rating: 3.80 (out of 4.00)

Grade: A-

Official Site

Did You Know?

Neither Kara Hayward or Jared Gilman, the films two Child stars, had ever been cast in a major motion picture before.

For Wes Anderson’s first three major outings; Rushmore, The Royal Tenenbaums, and The Life Aquatic, I was fanatical. Anderson’s work was a breath of fresh air, even if it looked a bit throwback. As far as Bottlerocket goes I’m at least one step ahead of Bill Murray, I’ve actually seen it (both versions), but when Darjeeling Limited hit the big screen, it wasn’t an easy film to catch as it was very limited, I’d hit my first rough patch with the director I thought that I knew and loved. In fact, I was so put out by the film I wasn’t even enthusiastic enough to merit a trip to the theater to see The Fantastic Mr. Fox, and I’m a huge Roald Dahl fan.

When Moonrise Kingdom came out critics loved it, fans adored it, but then again they did the same with Darjeeling Limited. Needless to say I made three, count them…1,2,3 attempts to see Moonrise Kingdom in theaters. Blame traffic, traffic lights, oh and a train was involved as well. In any case I didn’t feel as disappointed as I did the moment I had watched Moonrise Kingdom on Blu-Ray not less then a few hours ago. Not only did I love it, I had found may back towards loving Anderson’s bizarre yet enjoyable style.

So what’s Moonrise Kingdom about? Well it all starts with a rouge scout who disappears into the wilderness to meet a girl. The two twelve year olds meet, fall in love, and spend quite a bit of time eluding the boys former scout troop, the local authorities, the girls parents, and social services. If you’ve seen Anderson’s work before it’s part documentary, part art film, dysfunctional love story, and quirky comedy. Too give the film weight, not that it needed with such a charming story, Anderson loads the film with well known names and faces such as Bruce Willis, Francis McDormand, Edward Norton, Harvey Keitel, Tilda Swinton, Bob Balaban, and regulars Bill Murray, Eric Chase Anderson and Jason Schwartzman. So how did it fair on Blu-Ray?

PICTURE and AUDIO QUALITY:
Universal sort of gets a pass on the picture quality for Moonrise Kingdom. As we all know Anderson’s films look throwback and artsy with some off colorization and Anderson experimenting with different filming techniques. Moonrise kingdom is no different. The stand out scenes for the artsy shots take place in the yellow fields where the two pre-teens first meet. Too bad it really takes out the high definition appeal for the BD experience, There’s an overall soft quality with edges very dulled and colors looking either over saturated or sapped. Of course it’s all an artistic interpretation which means you’re getting the picture as intended, I just wish one aspect of the process hadn’t mucked it up for the rest. Fortunately though those soft scenes are limited. Night scenes look particularly crisp and throughout most of the film there is a very nice HD quality that makes up for what’s lacking in those few muddled sequences. Overall a good looking disc that you’ll either appreciate for the directors artistic eye or dislike a bit because it’s not completely perfect. Really it all comes down to you.

Audio on the disc is pretty fantastic. No special effects but the island setting offers up plenty of immersive ambient opportunities. Dialogue is crisp, ambient sounds are all over the sound sphere, and little subtle details are given their own pathway to be discovered at random. Fantastic in every way.

BONUS FEATURES:
~A Look Inside Moonrise Kingdom
~Welcome To The Island of Penzance: A collection of minute + worthy shorts opened by actor Bob Balaban which focuses on individual characters. Really just promo stuff.
~Set Tour With Bill Murray: Really just Murray doing the awesome stiff that Murray does. The best of the pretty much pointless bonus material found within.
~DVD, Digital and Ultraviolet versions.

 

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