Reviews and Problems with Where The Wild Things Are
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Where the Wild Things Are
28 January 2012
Excerpt: I’ll be the first to admit that I’d heard of “Where the Wild Things Are” but never remember reading it or having it read to me. No, for some odd reason the only association I had with the book was seeing it on a fraternity T-shirt advertising a party and seeing the somewhat scary and/or disturbing images of, well, whatever those things are supposed to be.
Excerpt: The opening scenes of Where the Wild Things Are capture a very specific moment in childhood anomie. It's a barely post-70's, post-divorce, snowflake sweater moment that is in fact so specific that it does that magic thing of flipping lanes over into the timeless, accessing some core of knowledge of what it's like to be a child raging against the total, flaming injustice of it all.
Excerpt: The film tells the story of Max, a rambunctious and sensitive boy who feels misunderstood at home and escapes to where the Wild Things are. Max lands on an island where he meets mysterious and strange creatures whose emotions are as wild and unpredictable as their actions. The Wild Things desperately long for a leader to guide them, just as Max longs for a kingdom to rule. When Max is crowned king, he promises to create a place where everyone will be happy.
Excerpt: It is impossible to tell where this screen adaptation of Where the Wild Things Are would have ended up without Max Records. He is the human star of the film, mingling with monsters that represent his thoughts, feelings, and actions. Before he travels to that land of weird creatures, Max is at home, struggling for attention. Records is nothing short of brilliant here, sitting under his mother’s (Catherin Keener) work desk while he tells a story.
Conclusion: For a film with a $100 million budget, 'Where the Wild Things Are' was a pretty big box office disappointment during its theatrical release. This is the sort of movie, however, that begs for rediscovery on home video. It's a beautiful and very emotionally gripping tone poem about the innocence of childhood. The Blu-ray looks and sounds fantastic. Its only disappointment is the weak selection of bonus features.
Excerpt: The Movie From the very first frames of filmmaker Spike Jonze's big screen take on Where the Wild Things Are , the tale grows beyond the classic children's book's precious few sentences to organically embrace the depiction of three-dimensional children living in the real world. Here young Max (played with amazing heart by newcomer Max Records) is a real kid with real problems, so much so that he runs away from home one night, hops into a convenient sailboat and is...
Summary: Spike Jonze's beautifully audacious and sadly flawed film brings Maurice Sendak's much-beloved, nine-sentence children's story to vivid, CGI-enhanced life. If only he had kept it a short story.
Excerpt: I had great expectations for Where the Wild Things Are after seeing the trailer. Growing up having read the book, I walked into the theater prepared for a laugh-heavy, nostalgic, feel-good flick. Let's just say I walked out feeling much different. The overall story is pretty faithful to the book, and while this would seem good, the movie is basically a very long and drawn out version of that story: Max has issues with his family, so he runs away to an imaginary island,...
Excerpt: The question going into Where The Wild Things Are is, can childlike wonderment be sustained for an entire film? Can Spike Jonze, who has never made a bad movie, take Maurice Sendak's rough-edged, slim picture book and give it the scope of a story for adults? The answer, as sad as I am to say this, is no.
Excerpt: Spike Jonze has recently said in interviews that his chief goal in adapting Maurice Sendak’s Where The Wild Things Are was to try to capture the feeling of being 9. By that measure—by just about any measure, really—he succeeded wildly. The big hurdle was spinning a beloved, essentially plot-free 300-word children’s book into a feature-length movie, but Jonze—along with co-scripter Dave Eggers, who knows a thing or two about the trials of childhood—managed to remain...