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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

Moonrise Kingdom [Blu-ray]


(Wes Anderson, 2012)




Reissued in the US on Blu-ray on May 26th, 2015:


Review by Gary Tooze



Theatrical: Indian Paintbrush

Video: Universal



Region: FREE (as verified by the Momitsu region FREE Blu-ray player)

Runtime: 1:33:47.663

Disc Size: 33,352,971,486 bytes

Feature Size: 28,001,593,344 bytes

Video Bitrate: 32.24 Mbps

Chapters: 20

Case: Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: 2012



Aspect ratio: 1.85:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video



DTS-HD Master Audio English 3598 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 3598 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
DTS Audio Portuguese 768 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 768 kbps / 24-bit
DTS Audio Spanish 768 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 768 kbps / 24-bit
DVS (Descriptive Video Service): Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps / DN -4dB / Dolby Surround



English (SDH), Portuguese, Spanish, none



Featurette: A Look Inside Moonrise Kingdom (3:07)

Welcome to the Island of New Penzance (Murray, Willis, Norton, Anderson - 6:11)

Set Tour With Bill Murray (3:09)





Description: Set on an island off the coast of New England in the summer of 1965, Moonrise Kingdom tells the story of two 12-year-olds who fall in love, make a secret pact, and run away together into the wilderness. As various authorities try to hunt them down, a violent storm is brewing off-shore - and the peaceful island community is turned upside down in every which way. Bruce Willis plays the local sheriff, Captain Sharp. Edward Norton is a Khaki Scout troop leader, Scout Master Ward. Bill Murray and Frances McDormand portray the young girl's parents, Mr. and Mrs. Bishop. The cast also includes Tilda Swinton, Jason Schwartzman, and Bob Balaban; and introduces Jared Gilman and Kara Hayward as Sam and Suzy, the boy and girl.


Director/co-writer Wes Anderson teams with screenwriter Roman Coppola for this period comedy drama set in the 1960s, and following a pair of young lovers (Jared Gilman and Kara Hayward) from an island off the New England coast as they head for the hills and throw their small town into a frenzy. Bruce Willis co-stars alongside Bill Murray, Edward Norton, and Frances McDormand.



The Film:

This is an adult film, really, of course, with all the pleasures of seeing Bruce Willis as a soft-hearted local cop; briefly encountering Tilda Swinton as a uniformed care worker called Social Services; lapping up the ample Hank Williams on the soundtrack; and squirming at a school production of Benjamin Britten’s ‘Noye’s Fludde’. But you can imagine ‘Moonrise Kingdom’ turning young kids on to cinema; it’s so full of a joyous love for the medium and smart without being clever-clever. Its childishness, sense of innocence and eye for fun all make it a very easy film to love.

Excerpt from TimeOut Film Guide located HERE


Moonrise Kingdom also recalls Anderson’s previous film, the animated Fantastic Mr. Fox. The humans act like the chatty beasts of Mr. Fox, dressing up in animal costumes, and sport a familiar badger’s face for the Khaki Scouts troop logo.

Another touchstone could be the paintings of Nova Scotia’s Alex Colville — particularly the famous 1965 one called To Prince Edward Island, that shows a stern woman peering through binoculars, as Suzy is wont to do: “It helps me to see things closer,” she says.

Well-received at the recent Cannes Film Festival, where it was the gala opener, Moonrise Kingdom is a literate, knowing and sweet-hearted reverie about adolescence. It presents 1960s youth rebellion as only Wes Anderson can.

Anderson describes it as the closest thing to an autobiographical film amongst his seven features. He’s dedicated the film to his girlfriend, a writer named Juman Malouf.

Excerpt from The Toronto Star located HERE


Image :    NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.

Firstly, this is the UK edition that I am reviewing, but from what I have been able to ascertain - the transfer is pretty much the same for the other Blu-ray releases with differences in subtitle and DUB options varying for the country selling the package. This UK Universal region FREE Blu-ray may be the least expensive when factoring in currency exchange. Moonrise Kingdom's Blu-ray transfer is, like the film, bathed in golden yellows. It seems frequently dark cast - like a rainy day on the island.  It is a dual-layered rendering with s strong bitrate for the 1.5 hour feature. The dulled pastels are intentional and fairly consistent throughout. The 1080P supports solid contrast with some minor depth in the 1.85:1 frame.  It's pristinely clean showcasing the filmmakers style and impressive art direction. This looks exactly like the theatrical version of the film and this Universal Blu-ray provides an excellent presentation.


















Audio :

As well as the original score by Alexandre Desplat, we get a host of music by Benjamin Britten with some Schubert, Mozart and a couple of Hank Williams pieces thrown-in. All sound wonderful via the DTS-HD Master 5.1 at a strong 3598 kbps. It handles all the film's audio track effects that are exported. Some of the orchestral pieces have brilliant resonating string sections - that are notable. Nothing but positives here for the audio transfer as well. There are optional subtitles and my Momitsu has identified it as being a region FREE.


Extras :

Supplements are a little lean but what is here is enjoyable including a 3-minute Look Inside Moonrise Kingdom which is a little more than an extended trailer. The 'Welcome to the Island of New Penzance' is essentially the same piece 4 times - focusing a different cast/crew (Murray, Willis, Norton, Anderson). It total it runs over 6-minutes. Lastly, there is an amusing Set Tour With Bill Murray - with his own brand of deadpan-delivered humor - lasting 3-minutes.



This is a masterpiece - one of my favorite films of the year. It seems like Wes Anderson just continues to improve as a film-maker. I found Fantastic Mr. Fox equally as brilliant with fabulous replay value. The Blu-ray does its job in exporting an accurate a/v for the film - and we give this a very strong recommendation. Let's hope Wes continues for 30 more years making gems like this! 

Gary Tooze

December 17th, 2012



Reissued in the US on Blu-ray on May 26th, 2015:


About the Reviewer: Hello, fellow Beavers! I have been interested in film since I viewed a Chaplin festival on PBS when I was around 9 years old. I credit DVD with expanding my horizons to fill an almost ravenous desire to seek out new film experiences. I currently own approximately 9500 DVDs and have reviewed over 5000 myself. I appreciate my discussion Listserv for furthering my film education and inspiring me to continue running DVDBeaver. Plus a healthy thanks to those who donate and use our Amazon links.

Although I never wanted to become one of those guys who focused 'too much' on image and sound quality - I find HD is swiftly pushing me in that direction.

Gary's Home Theatre:

60-Inch Class (59.58” Diagonal) 1080p Pioneer KURO Plasma Flat Panel HDTV PDP6020-FD

Oppo Digital BDP-83 Universal Region FREE Blu-ray/SACD Player
Momitsu - BDP-899 Region FREE Blu-ray player
Marantz SA8001 Super Audio CD Player
Marantz SR7002 THX Select2 Surround Receiver
Tannoy DC6-T (fronts) + Energy (centre, rear, subwoofer) speakers (5.1)

APC AV 1.5 kVA H Type Power Conditioner 120V

Gary W. Tooze






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