Friday, October 23, 2009



This movie is based off the book many of us read in our childhood written by Maurice Sendak that also goes by the same title. The main character of the story is a imaginative and trouble making young boy named Max. He gets in trouble from his mother and runs away from home and embarks on an adventure to the land where wild creatures rule the land. As he arrives he tries to interact positively with the monsters, but soon realizes that they want him for dinner. He uses his intellect to make them believe he is a king and the rightful ruler of their gang.

Most of you already know the story anyway and the movie follows the book in almost every regard. The boy who plays the character Max is surprisingly also named Max. He does a great job displaying his character's emotions through very few words and making the audience feel for his cause and sense of adventure. The Wild Things themselves are voiced by such notable actors as: James Gandolfini, Paul Dano, Forest Whitaker, Chris Cooper, and Catherine O'Hara. Each one of these actors does a fine job voicing their "wild thing."

This script used very little dialogue and a plethora of visuals to tell this tale. Granted the screenplay is based off a child's book that is 48 pages long and features all of 338 words the overuse of visual storytelling is understood. For a movie lacking in dialogue the director Spike Jonze uses visual text perfectly to help develop the story and create attachment to the "wild" characters and Max.

The characters are featured dancing and howling to the sky, building a fort, and having a dirt ball fight to name a few examples of wordless storytelling in Where the Wild Thing Are. Spike Jonze did an marvelous job with this aspect of the story and created many atheistically pleasing visuals.

Overall, Where the Wild Things Are is a pretty solid project from top to bottom. Some good child acting from Max himself (which is always hard to come by), quality performances from the voices of the wild things, and a great retelling of the classical book. I enjoyed the movie for the most part, but it did get a little boring in the middle. The film is 94 minutes long and seemed to drag on causing me to desire the ending. I recommend everyone who read and appreciated the book to check this movie out ASAP. If you weren't exposed to the book as a child this movie will have far less impact on your experience. If you have a chance to go to a movie and have already seen Zombieland, this is the next best choice.


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