You remember how the trailer for the film, Where the Wild Things Are made you feel? Well, the whole film gives you those warm fuzzy feelings. The movie took me to that place of being a kid again. Not many films can do that; it took my mind back in time, and made me think of the good times and bad times of being a little kid. It made me remember that being a kid wasn’t always easy, and that just because kids are kids, doesn’t mean they can’t feel the pressures of the world and life weighing them down. The one escape I had as a kid, and that every kid has is an imagination, creating a place to go, to escape reality.
In the film Max is a wildly rambunctious and sensitive boy, who feels like his family doesn’t understand him. He is at a point in his life where everything around him is changing and he doesn’t really know how to deal with these changes. After a major breakdown, Max runs away and escapes to where the Wild Things are-- an island where he meets some mysterious and strange creatures whose emotions are as wild and unpredictable as their actions. The Wild Things are desperately looking for a leader to help guide them, just as Max is looking for a kingdom to rule over. The Wild Things make Max their king, he promises to create a place where everyone will be happy. Max finds out soon enough that ruling his kingdom is not very easy, and the relationships he makes with the group of Wild Things ends up being more complicated than he originally thought.
Even though the film revolves around a little boy, and it makes you feel like a kid again, the story is flooded with maturity and adult themes. Abe Froman and I were talking about it after the movie, and discussed that this is very much a film for adults, and there are several aspects of the story that may go over some kids’ heads. There are also some very dark points in the film that might scare the kids, but nothing too extreme. It all depends on how much your kid(s) can take on the intensity scale. But then I thought about it a little bit more, and maybe I misunderstood the film. Maybe the kids that go see it will have a better understanding of it than the adults! After all, this movie revolves around them and their feelings.
Spike Jonze filmed the movie in the most innocent childlike way possible. It was like he tapped his inner child, and a kid made this movie. There was so much love, heart, and soul put into this film that you can’t help but feel it and have it rub off on you. While watching this movie there was a constant lump in my throat. My chest was filled with a burning goodness, and there were times where I had to fight back the tears. Not just because there was a mind explosion of memories and feelings of when I was a child, but because the film was just absolutely incredible! It is possibly the most beautiful film that I’ve seen this year.
The acting in the film was superb. Max Records gave one of the best performances of the year in my book. This kid better be nominated for an Academy Award for his performance. Records performance was pure perfection. It was all in his eyes, this kid is a great actor.
Also starring in the film was Catherine Keener, Mark Ruffalo, and featured the voices of James Gandolfini, Paul Dano, Catherine O’Hara, Forest Whitiker, Michael Berry Jr. and Chris Cooper. Everybody did such a fantastic job in their roles.
As for the effects and costumes, they couldn’t have been better. The costumes were awesome. I loved that they were actual tangible outfits. If they would have been in CGI it wouldn’t have worked. The expressions on the faces of the Wild Things were done in CGI but it was flawlessly done, and perfectly blended in with the costumes. I was kind of blown away by the depth of emotion in the faces and eyes of the creatures. These characters had just as much life and soul in them as Max did. I didn’t see them as being fake made up creatures at all. They were 100% believable.
I absolutely loved Where the Wild Things Are! It’s been added to my film favorites list of 2009. I highly recommend this film to everyone. It was such a powerful and emotional film. I loved the way it made me feel. It is definitely a great feel good movie.
If you’ve seen the film, tell us what you thought about it below! If you haven’t seen it then go see it now, and then tell us what you thought!
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