Moonrise Kingdom and the Normalization of Paedophilia

Wes Anderson’s The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou is one of my favorite films. I’ve watched it more than a dozen times.  It is full of fun lines that, unlike Napoleon Dynamite, haven’t grown old and tired as the years have passed. My wife and I still commonly volley quotes back and forth from the flick. Just a few of them…

  • “Don’t point that gun at him, he’s an unpaid intern.”
  • “Esteban! Esteban! Esteban!”
  • “We’ve never made great husbands, have we? Of course, I have a good excuse. I’m part gay.”

Needless to say, I am a Wes Anderson fan. I’ve seen all his movies save The Fantastic Mr. Fox. Naturally, I’ve been looking forward to his newest film, Moonrise Kingdom.  I finally saw it today. It was beautifully shot, scored, and acted. From a technical standpoint, it deserves it all the accolades it is receiving (94% on Rotten Tomatoes ain’t too shabby). Sadly, its content had a very “pedo vibe” that reminded me of a disturbing article I read last fall entitled, “Does Hollywood have a paedophilia epidemic?” (more on this connection later) It was one of the many articles that popped up in reaction to a string of “child molestation related” arrests in Hollywood.

Here is a breakdown of the three arrests that received the most attention from the media:

  • Hollywood manager Martin Weiss, 47, was charged December 1 for sexually abusing a former client, who was 12 at the time. Weiss worked as a costumed character for-hire at children’s parties. He started representing child clients 14 years ago, the LAPD says.
  • Award-winning composer for ‘Sesame Street’ Fernando Rivas, 59, was charged Novemeber 21 with production and distribution of child pornography.
  • Casting director Jason James Murphy, 35, was arrested in late November on suspicion of violating sex offender registry laws. He had been convicted of kidnapping and molesting an eight-year-old boy in Seattle 15 years ago. He helped cast movies like ‘Super 8,’but also family-oriented films like ‘The School of Rock,’ ‘Bad News Bears,’ and ‘Cheaper by the Dozen 2.’

Roman Polanski’s spirit continues to hover over Hollywood, doesn’t it? 

There are molesters and pedophiles in every community. Los Angeles is a huge community. Therefore, we shouldn’t be surprised that a few pedophiles from a huge community show up in that community’s largest industry, right?

Not according to industry insiders.

During an interview on Nightline, Corey Feldman said, “‘I can tell you that the number one problem in Hollywood was and always will be paedophilia. That’s the biggest problem for children in this industry…It’s the biggest secret.” You might be thinking, “Feldman is kind of a whackjob.” Well, he isn’t the only one making these claims.

A Beverly Hills-based psychotherapist, Dr Jenn Berman, told Fox News that Hollywood sets are a breeding ground for paedophiles because children there are vulnerable. Alison Arngrim, Nellie on Little House, said children in Hollywood are victimized more than their non-acting counterparts because those who could speak up – parents, family, agents, and managers – are all profiting from the child. ‘It’s almost a willing sacrifice that so many parents are oblivious to,’ says Paul Peterson, who acted on ‘The Donna Reed Show’ in the 1950s and 1960s.

We shouldn’t be surprised by all these accusations. They make perfect sense. An individual’s intellectual or creative output is always a function of their spiritual condition. For example, Paul makes it clear that engaging in sexual immorality, specifically homosexuality, leads to a darkening of the mind (Rom 1:21). In Hollywood, art simply imitates life. Consider some of the “artistic expression” that has come from Hollywood in the last few years…

Birth (2004) – The movie’s storyline follows Anna (played by Nicole Kidman), a widow, that gradually becomes convinced that her deceased husband, Sean, has been reincarnated in the form of a 10 year-old boy. Kidman’s character both shares a bath with the young boy and kisses him (in a different scene).

Kick Ass (2010) – This comic book adaptation centers on a group of “real-life” superheroes, one of which was protrayed by Chloë Grace Moretz when she was merely eleven. Moretz’s character, Hitgirl, is not only ridiculous violent (dismembers her victims) and foul mouthed (likes to use the c-word); She is also, in the words of journalist Christopher Tookey, was “made to look as seductive as possible”.

Moonrise Kingdom (2012) – In 1965, a pair of twelve-year-old misfits, Sam Shakusky and Suzy Bishop, flee their summer residences on an idyllic New England island and run away into the wilderness. There is one particularly disturbing scene where the two main characters’ humorous dancing in their underwear slowly becomes erotic. While slow dancing, the Sam gets an erection, Suzy says she likes it, and then she asks him to grope her breast. I think it was supposed to be a sweet discovery of sexuality (or some godless BS like that) but instead came off like an exercise in voyeuristic paedophilia (see the poster above and note the binoculars).

Two more examples: Hounddog (2007) and Hick (2011).

So, is Hollywood’s normalization of deviant sexuality, namely pedophilia, part of a vast left-wing pagan conspiracy? Did a bunch of godless film executives gathered in a smoke-filled room to develop a strategy to eradicate biblical sexuality and encourage child-adult sex?

I doubt it. Just like misery, sin loves company. Everyone is an evangelist for the things they love and Hollywood loves sexual perversion. Guilty consciences are always trying to normalize their sin. The prevalence of pedophiles and those that look the over way in Hollywood are working its way into the narratives of films we digest.

Spurgeon was right:

Ah, sirs! there may have been a time when Christians were too precise, but it has not been in my day. There may have been such a dreadful thing as Puritanic rigidity, but I have never seen it. We are quite free from that evil now, if it ever existed. We have gone from liberty to libertinism. We have passed beyond the dubious into the dangerous, and none can prophesy where we shall stop.

7 thoughts on “Moonrise Kingdom and the Normalization of Paedophilia

  1. Well, it is a conspiracy, but I don’t think the earthy co-conspirators (or the majority of them) realize what they’re doing. I don’t doubt that Satan has a plan to manipulate people’s minds toward the same sin, so that what was once unthinkable becomes “normal” in society.


    For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. – Ephesians 6:12

  2. Pingback: The Sexuality of “Whimsy”: Gender and Sex in the Films of Wes Anderson – Tropics of Meta

  3. The little girl in this movie discusses how the little boys penis “feels hard”.
    Do we really need to dance around as to whether or not this is kiddie porn?

    Let me be clear here – this is entry level kiddie porn designed to stimulate some and offend others. Typical hollywood garbage to me but unfortunately acceptable to most.

  4. Pingback: Kidding People About Moonrise Kingdom | M. Scott Foster

  5. You, sir, must be a pedophile yourself. All these claims point that the one who is lurking and getting excited by otherwise innocent stuff is you.

    So stop trying to act clean by using this “thou shalt not” BS.

    • Ms. Liz Bryan,

      Excited? I’m disgusted. How is two kids on the run from their parents (they aren’t even teens) feeling each other up an innocent thing?

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