The Books of Moonrise Kingdom

I don't often go to the movies, but last night offered that rare chance, and I went to see Wes Anderson's Moonrise Kingdom. I'm a big fan of Anderson's films (Royal Tenenbaums, Rushmore, The Life Aquatic, etc.), and this film had that same 'dollhouse' quality, quirky plot, and amazing cast of characters.

large.jpgThe film is set in 1965, and one of the main characters, Suzy Bishop (Kara Hayward), is a twelve-year-old runaway. She meets up with her boyfriend, an orphaned 'Khaki Scout,' and they hit the trail and set up camp. Suzy has packed her suitcase with six books that she stole from the library, with titles like The Girl From Jupiter, The Francine Odysseys, and Disappearance of the 6th Grade. Throughout the film, she reads excerpts from some of the books. The books are fake -- props written by Anderson-- but it was great to see books with such a leading role. And, in what must be a first for modern film, the book jacket designers got a huge credit at the end.

When I got home, I did a little quick research on the books, and it turns out that Anderson had considered animating the reading scenes and so commissioned animations of all six books, later used separately in a supplementary video to promote the film. You can view them here.

Image: Focus Features.

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