Saturday, October 17, 2009

Where the Wild Things Are

I have been looking forward to this film for almost a year, ever since the trailer made the Facebook rounds last winter. I've been obsessed with this book from the age of 5 at least, although when I first read it I knew no English but still liked the pictures. I bought a Wild Things shirt no less than 6 years ago, and still wear it often. What kid doesn't empathize with Max?

My friend Paul brought up the point that the film is so trendy because it caters to our generation's nostalgia, which I think is completely true. I went to three theatres before I found a show that wasn't sold out, and in each theatre I noticed not a single child (they were there, somewhere, perhaps). Going to see Wild Things was like drowning in a sea of plaid oxford shirts and skinny pants. Even the trailers were specifically catered towards the indie crowd (Wes Anderson animation? Count me in, and 1000 of my closest friends). Perhaps it's because I'm in Manhattan, which seems to be some sort of subculture epicenter. And yet, why wasn't I annoyed? Did I actually enjoy being part of some kind of cultural movement? Maybe. All I know is I freaking love Wild Things.

Karen O's soundtrack was obviously incredible, Dave Eggers's script was obviously incredible, Spike Jonze's direction and cinematography was obviously incredible. But boy, I think the vast majority of interactions in this movie would be completely lost on a 6-year old. And it was dark, even for me (who has a Clockwork Orange poster over her bed). There was many a time when I was literally scared to death that Max would be eaten by the wild things. Thus, this is a film practically perfect for college-age kids, but frankly I think anyone under the age of 10 would find it incredibly disturbing. Where the Wild Things Are takes PG-films to a completely different level. Even considering films as rich and unique as Disney/Pixar's Up!, other so-called "kid's" movies simply don't stand a chance against Wild Things. It's a cultural phenomenon!

That said, go see it, and let the wild rumpus start!


Edit: A late comic strip about Where the Wild Things Are.

Also fun to read (although I hate the guy): David Brooks over-analyzes the Wild Things

No comments: