"Where the Wild Things Are" (omnibus thread about the new movie) [edited title]

Maurice Sendak on Where the Wild Things Are being too scary

Too funny! Link.

I loved the book, but fear the movie will ruin it in the way Ron Howard ruined The Grinch. I think I’ll miss it.

I disagree. If Spike Jonze ruins the book, he’ll do it an a *completely different *way than Ron Howard did.

Maurice Sendak worked pretty closely with Jonze on the movie, and he loves it.

He likes it? Ugh. Now I feel bad about thinking it looks like a crappy hipster movie with stupid indie music in the background and a little kid emo-ing about how his life sucks because his mom’s a slut, and only the monsters understand him. I don’t want the Squid and the Whale and MONSTERS. I was hoping Sendak would feel the way Roald Dahl did about the Witches.

It got raves from whoever those guys are who were on At the Movies last night (or was it the night before?). Anyway, they both loved it.

It’s a very short book without much story to it, so a full-length film is going to have to be different.

My reservations based purely on brief clips:

The use of actors in Sendakesque monster costumes against real backgrounds and interacting with a real human child is distracting. They look too much like actors in monster costumes. I think full animation or much more stylized scenery might have worked better. But this may be the kind of thing that just takes a few minutes to get used to before becoming immersed in the story.

The monsters sound way too much like ordinary humans that don’t have giant furry heads. My impression without looking at the cast list is that they hired known face actors instead of going with professional voice actors.

Still, the critics had nothing bad to say about and said it was much more moving than they would have expected. In fact, it might be too much for some parents to handle, although they thought kids would be just fine.

I always hated the book as a kid, not because I was outright afraid of it, but the pictures of the monsters and the illustrations’ stylization and feel made the hairs on the back of my neck stand-up- it made me feel weird. I actively avoided it and never really read it because of the creepy illustrations.

Here in our library is the only place where you can see official art of the Wild Things’ backsides. It’s a small claim to fame, but it’s ours.

But do you have In the Night Kitchen?

FWIW, I think the film will focus on every child’s feelings of insecurity, fear and anger. I read the Wild Things in the film can be interpreted as separate parts of his personality. In that light, it makes much more sense. It’s not about being misunderstood, it’s about coming to grips with all these very raw emotions and behaviors as a child and controlling them.

I also read that they added the faces in CG, on top of the full costumes shot in the film. I’m glad they did that, because I hate “puppet mouth”. Their faces and mouths move very realistically. Thank god.

I also thought the song they picked for the trailer was perfection (Wake Up by Arcade Fire).

I’ll judge this film on its own merits. I really love everything Jonze has done so far, and love his unique perspective and darker humor. I’m really interested in seeing this film, because it’s quite different than anything else he’s done.

Oh, hell yeah. We believe in smut here. 44 available copies.

Dave Eggers did a NOVELIZATION called The Wild Things. Just finished it…VERY GOOD!!!

He also co-wrote the screenplay.

Spike was on Fresh Air on Tues talking about this movie. Interesting interview. You can hear it here.

Michael Phillips of the Chicago Tribune and A.O. Scott of the New York Times are the new hosts, after they dumped the young guys they had put on the show in an attempt to get a younger demographic. Phillips described it as “one of the best films of 2009. Once in a decade, the right movie makers get ahold of a great children’s book, and the results are as special as you hoped for.”

As for me, it’s Spike Jonez…so I’d be there for the first showing no matter what even if it was getting horrible reviews, because I can’t imagine Jonez doing anything uninteresting. But their review makes me think that this may well be the best thing he’s ever done.

I saw it this morning and I still can’t figure out quite how to explain my feelings. But based on your post (and without spoiling anything) I’m fairly certain you’ll love it; because this is not a kids’ movie - it’s a Spike Jonze movie that happens to have a kid in it.

Kids go through plenty of crap in real life, no need to shield them from dramatic cinema. Quite the opposite in fact, it can act as a sort of emotional vaccine. I went to whatever movies my mom went to since I was pretty much born, and anything I wasn’t mature enough to handle just didn’t register.

Wild Things was one of my favorite childrens’ books, and we named our cat after the main character, so I’m really looking forward to this movie. Like Sendak, I’m a little reserved about the bedroom metamorphosis into a forest being replaced by simply sailing a ship, but otherwise the trailers have me excited. Look forward greatly to this.

Of course the book is only ten sentences long (I even counted last time I was at Borders lol).which works out to at least 9 minutes per sentence lol. But the movie still looks good as both an adaption and it’s own thing.

On the other hand it may be too appealing. It looks marketing to me, someone who grew up on the book, and is nostalgic, as I imagine Jonze is, but maybe it not been made with actual children in mind… not that it’s too scary for them or too mature, just that it’s been made for adults who remember reading it as a child and not for current children readers.

The trailers do a lot to encourage this impression. It’s making me very hesitant to see the movie even though I like Jonze’s work and the reviews look good. (We were fans of this story in my house - my parents had cats named Lobel and Sendak when I was a kid.)

Well. Maybe I’ll wait till it comes out on DVD. I’m just in general so wary of when people take children’s books that are really short and expand them into huge feature length films.

First, not enough people tell uptight yuppie parents to go to hell. I find this to be both hilarious and excellent!

Next,

Teehee: http://stuffwhitepeoplelike.com/2009/07/13/127-where-the-wild-things-are/

And I’m not even white.

So who are all these people going to see the movie? Children and brown people?

::defensive:: And I hate camping with the fire of a thousand and a half easy bake ovens, so that makes up for any hatred of Wild Things. (And my um affinity for Sarah Silverman. What can I say, she’s on my list of girls I’d go lesbo for!)