Where the Wild Things Are

Where the Wild Things Are

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Where the Wild Things Are

An adaptation of the legendary children's picture book by Maurice Sendak by one of cinema's most exciting talents: Spike Jonze (Adaptation, Being John Malkovich).

Jonze employs live action and puppetry to flesh out the story that went something like this: Boy gets put to bed; boy sees jungle growing around his bed; boy meets strange monsters; boy dances around with monsters; boy returns to his bed. The cast is also great: Catherine Keener (Being John Malkovich), Mark Ruffalo (Eternal Sunshine of a Spotless Mind), plus the voice talents of James Gandolfini, Michelle Williams, Catherine O'Hara, Forrest Whitaker and Paul Dano. The young Max is played by newcomer Max Records.

2009Rating: PG, some scenes may scare very young children101 minsUSA
AdventureComedyDramaKids & FamilyFantasy
Director:
Spike Jonze ('Adaptation', 'Being John Malkovich', and many of your favourite music videos)
Writer:
Spike JonzeDave Eggers
Cast:
Forest WhitakerMichelle WilliamsPaul DanoCatherine KeenerJames GandolfiniCatherine O'HaraMax RecordsMark Ruffalo
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Reviews & comments

Flicks, Andrew Hedley

Flicks, Andrew Hedley

flicks

A ten-sentence picture book from 1963 has inspired a 100-minute movie about the anxieties and loneliness of childhood. Thankfully, the lack of strong narrative makes way for a beautifully fragile and contemplative tone, under which lies very gentle humour and moments of inspired lunacy (wait until you meet Terry and Bob).

5.0
0

Childhood memories

I really loved the books as a child and the memories of what the creatures were really like sadly like many things what we adored as children sadly can not be recreated for us as adults still an alright movie but alas I must pass on only two stars from me

2.0
0

Review

I LOVED this movie - But having always been a fan of the book (and Jim Henson) that was predictable I guess. No matter how much I loved it - my two kids (6 and 3) fell asleep in the middle of the movie. It just wasn't riveting enough for them - there are long stretches where very little happens. I guess the story (being quite short) once stretched out...

5.0
0

I'd see it again

Spike Jonze has got to be a genius to make this what it is. The strong emotional pull and crisp/clean storytelling make it work in the way any real life story can

5.0
0

Boring

I also took my granddaughter to see this movie and dodnt get a lot of excitement either the two grown men on either side of us found it so uninteresting that they snored through it ( and no they wernt with me). BIG dissapointment

0

Surprisingly rather disappointing...

Though most of us adults have the child within us, I failed to excite the one within me on this one! I was surprised at how much I was looking forward to it ending... Not horrendous, but not an experience I'm overly keen to repeat. My neice however LOVED it, so it's very much a matter of individual taste (and age too no doubt).

2.0
0

Boring

My girl friend loved it but I nearly went to sleep. It did not do alot for me.

2.0
0

Art House

This film is an interesting adaption of the beloved children's book but I thought it was too ArtHouse the audience which the book appeals to due to it's lack of humour. However the sound track, performances and graphics where done well.

3.0
0

100 mins I'll never get back

I read the book as a child, and was absolutly mesmorised. However, the movie did little to impress. The lack of humour and boring between conversation scenes ruined it for me. The only good comment I can give on this movie, is that the soundtrack is beautiful, but why pay close to twenty bucks to listen to the occasional song?

1.0
0

Crippled

This film not only crippled my favorit kids book, it confused and upset my five your old boy who also loves the book. Jones should have gone off on his own and tried telling his depressing little melodrama to an audience not attached to this franchise and seen how he got on, yes Im angry at what has been done here, my advise is avoid this.

1.0
0

It felt empty

If I had to describe the movie in one sentence, I would have to say it just felt empty. I don't exactly know what Jonze was trying to go for, because it was neither here nor there. For one, it was terrible viewing for a child and from the trailers you could be fooled into thinking it was a light hearted adventure for a small boy. The reality was something...

2.0
0
Variety

Variety

press

Director Spike Jonze's sharp instincts and vibrant visual style can't quite compensate for the lack of narrative eventfulness that increasingly bogs down this bright-minded picture.

0
The Times

The Times

press

It’s all very charming and quirky. The hipster flavour that Jonze adds to the film, together with the soundtrack from the downtown NY goddess Karen O, certainly makes this tonally unique among children’s films. But it’s also, ultimately, a little flimsy and unlikely to achieve anything like the iconic status of its source material.

3.0
0
The New York Times

The New York Times

press

With Where the Wild Things Are Jonze has made a work of art that stands up to its source and, in some instances, surpasses it.

0
Rolling Stone

Rolling Stone

press

Jonze has filmed a fantasy as if it were absolutely real, allowing us to see the world as Max sees it, full of beauty and terror. The brilliant songs, by Karen O (of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs) and the Kids, enhance the film's power.

0
Roger Ebert

Roger Ebert

press

The movie felt long to me, and there were some stretches during which I was less than riveted. Is it possible that there wasn't enough Sendak story to justify a feature-length film?

0
New Zealand Herald

New Zealand Herald

press

It's hard not to be entranced throughout by the boy in the wolf suit as he runs wild, but eventually goes home a little wiser.

3.0
0
Los Angeles Times

Los Angeles Times

press

When faced as a director with the rudderless screenplay he (Jonze) co-wrote with Eggers, he's been powerless to energize it in any involving way. Sometimes you are better off with 10 sentences than tens of millions of dollars, and this is one of those times.

0
Hollywood Reporter

Hollywood Reporter

press

Where the film falters is Jonze and novelist Dave Eggers' adaptation, which fails to invest this world with strong emotions.

0
Dominion Post

Dominion Post

press

Jonze has brought depth, melancholy and purpose to his film.

5.0
0
Flicks, Andrew Hedley

Flicks, Andrew Hedley

flicks

A ten-sentence picture book from 1963 has inspired a 100-minute movie about the anxieties and loneliness of childhood. Thankfully, the lack of strong narrative makes way for a beautifully fragile and contemplative tone, under which lies very gentle humour and moments of inspired lunacy (wait until you meet Terry and Bob).

5.0
0
Variety

Variety

press

Director Spike Jonze's sharp instincts and vibrant visual style can't quite compensate for the lack of narrative eventfulness that increasingly bogs down this bright-minded picture.

0
The Times

The Times

press

It’s all very charming and quirky. The hipster flavour that Jonze adds to the film, together with the soundtrack from the downtown NY goddess Karen O, certainly makes this tonally unique among children’s films. But it’s also, ultimately, a little flimsy and unlikely to achieve anything like the iconic status of its source material.

3.0
0
The New York Times

The New York Times

press

With Where the Wild Things Are Jonze has made a work of art that stands up to its source and, in some instances, surpasses it.

0
Rolling Stone

Rolling Stone

press

Jonze has filmed a fantasy as if it were absolutely real, allowing us to see the world as Max sees it, full of beauty and terror. The brilliant songs, by Karen O (of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs) and the Kids, enhance the film's power.

0
Roger Ebert

Roger Ebert

press

The movie felt long to me, and there were some stretches during which I was less than riveted. Is it possible that there wasn't enough Sendak story to justify a feature-length film?

0
New Zealand Herald

New Zealand Herald

press

It's hard not to be entranced throughout by the boy in the wolf suit as he runs wild, but eventually goes home a little wiser.

3.0
0
Los Angeles Times

Los Angeles Times

press

When faced as a director with the rudderless screenplay he (Jonze) co-wrote with Eggers, he's been powerless to energize it in any involving way. Sometimes you are better off with 10 sentences than tens of millions of dollars, and this is one of those times.

0
Hollywood Reporter

Hollywood Reporter

press

Where the film falters is Jonze and novelist Dave Eggers' adaptation, which fails to invest this world with strong emotions.

0
Dominion Post

Dominion Post

press

Jonze has brought depth, melancholy and purpose to his film.

5.0
0

Childhood memories

I really loved the books as a child and the memories of what the creatures were really like sadly like many things what we adored as children sadly can not be recreated for us as adults still an alright movie but alas I must pass on only two stars from me

2.0
0

Review

I LOVED this movie - But having always been a fan of the book (and Jim Henson) that was predictable I guess. No matter how much I loved it - my two kids (6 and 3) fell asleep in the middle of the movie. It just wasn't riveting enough for them - there are long stretches where very little happens. I guess the story (being quite short) once stretched out...

5.0
0

I'd see it again

Spike Jonze has got to be a genius to make this what it is. The strong emotional pull and crisp/clean storytelling make it work in the way any real life story can

5.0
0

Boring

I also took my granddaughter to see this movie and dodnt get a lot of excitement either the two grown men on either side of us found it so uninteresting that they snored through it ( and no they wernt with me). BIG dissapointment

0

Surprisingly rather disappointing...

Though most of us adults have the child within us, I failed to excite the one within me on this one! I was surprised at how much I was looking forward to it ending... Not horrendous, but not an experience I'm overly keen to repeat. My neice however LOVED it, so it's very much a matter of individual taste (and age too no doubt).

2.0
0

Boring

My girl friend loved it but I nearly went to sleep. It did not do alot for me.

2.0
0

Art House

This film is an interesting adaption of the beloved children's book but I thought it was too ArtHouse the audience which the book appeals to due to it's lack of humour. However the sound track, performances and graphics where done well.

3.0
0

100 mins I'll never get back

I read the book as a child, and was absolutly mesmorised. However, the movie did little to impress. The lack of humour and boring between conversation scenes ruined it for me. The only good comment I can give on this movie, is that the soundtrack is beautiful, but why pay close to twenty bucks to listen to the occasional song?

1.0
0

Crippled

This film not only crippled my favorit kids book, it confused and upset my five your old boy who also loves the book. Jones should have gone off on his own and tried telling his depressing little melodrama to an audience not attached to this franchise and seen how he got on, yes Im angry at what has been done here, my advise is avoid this.

1.0
0

It felt empty

If I had to describe the movie in one sentence, I would have to say it just felt empty. I don't exactly know what Jonze was trying to go for, because it was neither here nor there. For one, it was terrible viewing for a child and from the trailers you could be fooled into thinking it was a light hearted adventure for a small boy. The reality was something...

2.0
0