Max, a rambunctious and sensitive boy feels misunderstood at home and escapes to where the Wild Things are. He 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. Max soon finds, though, that ruling his kingdom is not so easy and his relationships there prove to be more complicated than he originally thought.
Where the Wild Things Are is another perfect example of a great idea being stretched too thin. What you've got here is a 90-minute movie based on a 48-page children's book that had 10 lines of actual text in it to begin with. The film gets pretty thin and redundant in the middle. After a while, monsters banging into trees, knocking stuff over, and jumping on each other get a bit old. We get it already. The kid wants to have fun, but then when he gets bored misses his family. Alright, so that's a quick summing up of how I feel about the film adaptation.
Alright, so is the movie bad? No. It's done pretty well. The visuals are great. You really don't think about people being in suits playing the monsters. You actually completely buy into them. I was even told after viewing the film that they used CGI on some of their eye and head movements, which totally blew me away. You honestly couldn't tell. The landscapes and sets look great, as well. There are absolutely no problems with the special effects or visuals.
Max Records, playing the little kid Max, does a great job. His childlike anger and story-telling to the monsters is completely convincing. His energy and charisma comes across as genuine. He's definitely impressive in the role.
I think adults who read the book when they were younger are going to be much more into this film than anyone else. It just seems like it's more of a fond memory movie than something for teenagers or children today. I would imagine that most children under the age of 10 are going to be scared of the movie, especially towards the end when it gets pretty dark.
I just found the movie kind of a letdown and not as satisfying as I thought it could be or probably will be for a lot of people. Don't be surprised if you leave the movie theater feeling a bit unfulfilled. Or sick from the camera bouncing around all the time. Did I mention that? They do the shaky cam thing throughout this movie as well. Be sure you have your airplane barf-bag with you upon boarding. (Review by Eric Shirey)
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