"The actual subject of this post is scuttlebutt: the things that people have been saying about “Moonrise Kingdom” and the way they’ve been setting it apart from Anderson’s other films, as if embracing this one while distancing themselves from the others, suggesting that they approve of the way the young fellow is turning out. It’s not enough to love a movie—it’s important to love it for the right reasons. “Moonrise Kingdom” is not a drastic departure from Anderson’s first six features but rather an intensification of their characteristics, or even just their more explicit revelation. To love “Moonrise Kingdom” at the expense of “The Darjeeling Limited” or “The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou” is to love it lightly. And if there’s one thing that “Moonrise Kingdom” is about, it’s the sanctity of a total, soulful, insightful love." — Richard Brody, The New YorkerYou see, this is why I could never be an auterist. I don't want to like all of a filmmaker's movies. I want to like some of them, and sometimes just one. The idea of signing on, lock stock and barrel, to a filmmaker's entire ouevre, without the ability to prefer this one over that, smacks too much of slavery, coupled with a wilful blindness towards the collaborative accidents that make for great films. It is this blog's belief that great films are never born from one man's mastery: the most creative point in a filmmakers life is when he loses control, and turns that slippage into something airborne. Or experiences a creative clash with a temperamental opposite. Which is why I love The Wrestler but no other Aronofsky films: because Rourke wrested control of the film away from him and injected some pathos into Aronofsky's bloodless patterns. The same with Kubrick's The Shining: the only Kubrick film I really like because of Nicholson. And why I love Chinatown, for what I truly love is the conversation going on in the film between Polanski and Towne — never to be repeated. It broke Polanski out of his characteristic solipsism. The same with conversation between Fincher and Sorkin in The Social Network. The sad fact is that the movie business tends to drum the freshness out of talent. The longer careers go on, the more conscious directors become of their own themes, and the more that feeds back into the work, swelling and distorting it. The opportunities to slip your own leash get further and further apart. Close Encounters of the Third Kind is is many ways the superior film to E.T. because it is the last film Spielberg made before becoming aware of what "Spielbergian" meant: it was all being mapped out for the first time. Badlands is the only Terrence Malick film that deserves the term "masterpiece" precisely because a masterpiece is what the others strive to be; they are merely faux-naif, where Badlands has the quality of genuine innocence. (There is only one 'name' filmmaker working today whose creative growth is a picture of organic health and that's Ang Lee, but that's another post.) Interesting that Brody should get the subject of Moonrise Kingdom subtly wrong: it's not about "the sanctity of total, soulful, insightful love". It's about first love — puppy love. Soulful, all-consuming, sweet, short-lived. My advice to Anderson? Make a movie with just three main characters again.