Metascore
71

Generally favorable reviews - based on 37 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 37
  2. Negative: 0 out of 37
  1. 100
    Jonze has filmed a fantasy as if it were absolutely real, allowing us to see the world as Max sees it, full of beauty and terror. The brilliant songs, by Karen O (of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs) and the Kids, enhance the film's power.
  2. Not since Robert Altman took on “Popeye” a generation ago, and lost, has a major director addressed such a well-loved, all-ages title. This time everything works, from tip to tail.
  3. His (Jonze) obvious affection for, and veneration of, Maurice Sendak's 1963 Caldecott Medal-winning children's book is palpable in his near-perfect live-action adaptation, a dreamy -- and, like Sendak's book, faintly nightmarish -- exploration of one child's tantrum-y side.
  4. This is one of the year's best. To paraphrase the Wild Thing named KW, I could eat it up, I love it so.
  5. 100
    What he’s (Jonze) ended up with strikes me as one of the most empathic and psychologically acute of all movies about childhood -- a "Wizard of Oz" for the dysfunctional-family era.
  6. With Where the Wild Things Are Jonze has made a work of art that stands up to its source and, in some instances, surpasses it.
  7. As wish-fulfillments go, this is a movie lover's dream.
  8. 100
    In elaborating on the original book so boldly, and repopulating it so richly, Jonze has protected Where the Wild Things Are as an inviolable literary work. In preserving its darkest spirit, he's created a potent, fully realized variation on its most highly charged themes.
  9. Reviewed by: Josh Modell
    91
    Spike Jonze has recently said in interviews that his chief goal ...was to try to capture the feeling of being 9. By that measure--by just about any measure, really--he succeeded wildly.
  10. Reviewed by: Matthew Sorrento
    90
    His film captures the wonderment of dreaming - and the reality of waking.
  11. I don't want to oversell the thing. It is, quite simply, something very special indeed.
  12. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    88
    Like the book, the movie blends a primitive quality with an imaginative artfulness. It also amplifies upon the story's gentle, sly wit.
  13. There are some great, rapturous moments in Where the Wild Things Are. Jonze is humbled before the wonders of a child's imagination, and so are we.
User Score
6.4

Generally favorable reviews- based on 356 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 64 out of 190
  1. Oct 8, 2011
    7
    "Where the Wild Things Are" is a movie campier than its original book source, but director Spike Jonze successfully transfers the unbiased,"Where the Wild Things Are" is a movie campier than its original book source, but director Spike Jonze successfully transfers the unbiased, pure perspective of a child (Max) to the audience. Full Review »
  2. TedD
    Apr 18, 2010
    3
    I just saw the film, Where the Wild Things Are, last night. There were moments that I really liked in the film but even in those moments I I just saw the film, Where the Wild Things Are, last night. There were moments that I really liked in the film but even in those moments I felt frustrated in that the movies main character had never been fully develope much less a sense of exceptionality in his life experience. Even when I tried to appreciate the setting and creation of the wild animals I was aware of my boredom. And as to the insights into childhood, I found those self-indulgent. One scene stood out to me. Before running away, the boy stands on the kitchen table saying "Feed me woman" and asserts more than he knows only to find that he is more terrified with his mothers remark, "What is wrong with you? Maybe he knows in a post Freudian world living with a single Mom and watching his Mom flirting with her boyfriend. His answer is to set sail and find a new family where he can be King and in becoming King he becomes tamed. I like the insight but a whole film? Full Review »
  3. Aug 17, 2012
    10
    A stunning, emotional , well acted and written movie. Although im glad many others give it a 10 i would disagree with any that state it not aA stunning, emotional , well acted and written movie. Although im glad many others give it a 10 i would disagree with any that state it not a childrens movie. Its for everyone that is or has ever been a child, and certainly some children ( just like the " adults " hear giving well thought out 0 reviews ) will find it boring but some will love it. It has a certain look like no other film . Everyone has differnt opinions on everything in life so dont listen to the ( incorrect ) bad review....know what your getting into and just watch it. U could be missing out on one of your new favs :) Full Review »