HR Pufnstuf image courtesy of the Life Magazine image archive on Google.
This is not a review of the Where the Wild Things Are movie. I haven’t seen it. I’m not going to. So, if you are inclined to see it, you may very well want to ignore this rant.
I love Sendak’s Where the Wild Things Are… but I have no interest in seeing it turned into any full-length movie, regardless of whatever quality said movie may or may not have. Two hours of rampaging fursuits could never be as charming to me as Sendak’s sparse 48-page masterpiece.
While the filmmakers sound considerably more well-intentioned than the evil shits who have made “adaptations” of Seuss in recent years (the adaptation is written by Dave Eggers, the instigator of the wonderful McSweeney’s), the concept of turning Wild Things into a full-length, live action movie just doesn’t work for me.
The trailer, which I regret morbid curiosity beckoned me to watch, made me kind of queasy to look at (the atrociously inappropriate music didn’t help). Maybe if it was animated and 15 minutes long, it would be more appealing. And unmarketable, of course.
There is always the argument (a good one) that however awful an adaptation, the book is still on the shelf… which is true enough. Certainly, some works are enhanced by different interpretations… Alice in Wonderland, for example, has been reinterpreted hundreds of times and is much richer for it.
Wild Things is too personal of a vision to be improved on by this sort of reinterpretation, in my view. It seems sad to me that some kids will grow up with memories of this movie instead of the brilliant book.
Having seen the movie, it looks great, but it fell into the trouble that I agree that would happen: It’s “Where The Wussy Things Are”.
The movie looks like the book come to life, but the tone is not there. They’ve all got hurt feelings and buld huts. You cry at what could have been.
The music: If you hated the trailer’s music (And I did) you’ll hate the Juno-esq type soundtrack.
was very sad coming out of this movie. THE MAGICAL JOURNEY THE BOOK TOOK ME ON WAS NO WHERE IN SITE INSTEAD I WAS LEFT WATCHING STONE COLD REALITY. THIS DEFINATELY WAS NOT MADE FOR KIDDIES. I WAS SURPRISED TO LEARN THAT MAURICE SNDAK ACTUALLY APPROACHED SPIKE JONZ TO MAKE THIS FILM
I like Spike Jonze, but I have no desire to see this movie.
The book has a lot in common with myths and fairy tales–its brevity is part of what makes it charming and meaningful. Stories like this lose something of their personality through overtelling.
I was surprised Sendak wanted it made either… hopefully he was well paid. I liked Spike Jones’ Being John Malkovich, and I like Dave Eggers… both talented fellas… I just really don’t like the idea of Wild Things being made into a movie.