Where the Wild Things Are

User Score
6.5

Generally favorable reviews- based on 380 Ratings

User score distribution:

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User Reviews

  1. DamianP
    Mar 6, 2010
    3
    Lots of good songs, lots of anger and lots of no story. Do not punish your kids with this movie - buy them the soundtrack instead.
  2. ScottM.
    Oct 17, 2009
    3
    This film constructs and simultaneously deconstructs itself in each scene. The film's honest ending is a meager consolation prize for those patient enough to endure the existential vacuity of the film.
  3. Magnum
    Jan 17, 2010
    3
    I fell asleep and dreamed I had gone to see Zombieland instead. I really wanted to like it too, it's just that it's so boring.
  4. 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 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 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? Expand
  5. AJ
    Oct 17, 2009
    3
    I found it rather dull and the thin plot of romantic angst between the beasts more than a little silly.
  6. TR
    Oct 25, 2009
    3
    This movie made me extremely uncomfortable, like sitting in on an hour 40 of a kid's therapy session. This isn't a movie I'd want to take a kid to. They chose to flesh the story out with dysfunction, and that's not what I thought I was getting into.
  7. DWilly
    Oct 30, 2009
    3
    Come on! Seriously. Where the wild things decidedly aren't. The creatures all speak and act like a bunch of glum community college instructors with various levels of bitterness and depression. The script, I have little doubt, was actually written from the ramblings of a nine year old boy; and now all these jackass critics have fallen for it as profound. The meta-joke is on you, Come on! Seriously. Where the wild things decidedly aren't. The creatures all speak and act like a bunch of glum community college instructors with various levels of bitterness and depression. The script, I have little doubt, was actually written from the ramblings of a nine year old boy; and now all these jackass critics have fallen for it as profound. The meta-joke is on you, eggheads. A raccoon named Richard, indeed. This is not art (and it sure as hell isn't for kids). I can go for this kind of stuff when it's done well, and you can see something of this kind done with far and away more talent at just about any video installation at any modern art museum. Nothing's learned, nobody changes, and the final image of the mother (the ever flat and neurotic Katherine keener) watching rapt as her spoiled brat eats chocolate cake says it all. Expand
  8. Mr.Gone
    Mar 17, 2010
    3
    I think it says something that there is such a large rift in opinions about this movie. Some people regard it as a genius work of child-like art, while others are clearly underwhelmed by the drama. When there are so many 10's from critics and fans, there is also an overabundance of 0s to 4s with many charging that it may be the worst film they've ever seen. I admittedly was not I think it says something that there is such a large rift in opinions about this movie. Some people regard it as a genius work of child-like art, while others are clearly underwhelmed by the drama. When there are so many 10's from critics and fans, there is also an overabundance of 0s to 4s with many charging that it may be the worst film they've ever seen. I admittedly was not the least bit impressed with the lead character, who was not charming or endearing, but quite annoying and rebellious. And, I must reiterate the idea that there doesn't seem to be a clear moral to the story. The kid didn't appear changed or better at the end, just calmer [for the moment], with a nice big slice of chocolate cake as his reward for his retarded (9 year olds don't bite their parents) antics. Furthermore, I'm a bit appalled that so many reputable critics co-sign on the alleged brilliance of this adaptation. I don't see the film being at all successful or appealing to kids. The monsters were depressed, monotone, and lifelessly draped in sun-faded fur. The plot and the characters lacked the animation that would spark the interest of 10 and under movie-goers. And, for adults it was hard to relate. Again, I don't know how many of my friends stood on kitchen tables dressed as their favorite fictional characters in stark rebellion. And once reprimanded, resorted to biting their parents. Maybe, [maybe] at 4. Not 9. It was unrealistic, morally confused, and flat boring. It's definitely an acquired taste, at best and worst. But, with such a compelling need for acquisition, there's absolutely no logical way to justify it as '100' [percent] brilliant. Sorry. Expand
  9. Sean
    Nov 1, 2009
    3
    I had such high hopes for this movie and was completely let down. I really don't know how all of these critics are giving this movie such high reviews. Was thoroughly disappointed with this movie....
  10. emilyd
    Nov 13, 2009
    3
    Visually beautiful, but that is really all I can say positively. I was with a 12 and a 9 year old and we left the theatre baffled and drained... not for kids. I loved the book as a kid! what a shame!!!
  11. JayG
    Oct 27, 2009
    3
    Depressing. Dark. Violent. Inconclusive. Mr. Sendak must have needed some money desperately. I wouldn't take my kids to see it. Read them the book and let their imaginations soar.
  12. NickL
    Nov 14, 2009
    3
    I watched this sober. That was a mistake. The only good part of this movie was the soundtrack. Boooooring.
  13. Oct 28, 2011
    3
    It is rubbish, I'm sorry to people that liked it but I really didn't enjoy the film. I was looking forward to going to see the film at the cinema but I was really dissapointed, I am a fan of the book but it isn't based on the book at all. I really disliked it.
  14. KellyO
    Mar 15, 2010
    2
    The sound track was good other then that this movie was horrible. Here is a quick plotline: Little kid ruins mom's date then runs into woods finds boat goes to other world ruins it then comes back satisfied and forces mom to make him food. It should really be renamed "Land of Depressed Monsters"
  15. DavidS
    Mar 17, 2010
    2
    First: Why did so many reviewers suggest this might be a kids' movie? It's a kid's movie for your wounded inner child. Spike Jonze said he wanted to capture how it was to be nine years old. Well, he succeeded, and maybe that's why I hate this movie so much. Nine for me meant divorce, yelling parents, separation, uncertainty and anxiety. I read books like "Wild Things" First: Why did so many reviewers suggest this might be a kids' movie? It's a kid's movie for your wounded inner child. Spike Jonze said he wanted to capture how it was to be nine years old. Well, he succeeded, and maybe that's why I hate this movie so much. Nine for me meant divorce, yelling parents, separation, uncertainty and anxiety. I read books like "Wild Things" to imagine a place beyond all that. But the stressful home Max leaves (like mine) is Oz compared to the mopey, violent, joyless land of emo muppets he lands on. There is nothing bright or delightful about this world or this movie and Max is never in command of anything, but always fearful and sad. And yes, that was my nine, but that doesn't mean it makes a good movie. Especially when nothing happens, and for a long time. Masking the misery with indie-star voices and achy hipster tunes doesn't make it gold. "Wild Things" is painful and boring. Expand
  16. Andrew
    Mar 6, 2010
    2
    About as much fund as I would assume a trip to the psychiatrist to be. Quite why this is well reviewed I do not have a clue. Boring and demented.
  17. MarkW
    Mar 6, 2010
    2
    Kudos to the cinematographers, production designers and Jim Henson's muppet shop, the film looks great. There's just one thing they forgot; a story. The film is so interested in commenting on kids it forgets to entertain them, and the result is a bunch of wild things who sit around and complain a lot and don't do much. Why would any kid imagine a boring world like that? He Kudos to the cinematographers, production designers and Jim Henson's muppet shop, the film looks great. There's just one thing they forgot; a story. The film is so interested in commenting on kids it forgets to entertain them, and the result is a bunch of wild things who sit around and complain a lot and don't do much. Why would any kid imagine a boring world like that? He could have gotten that at home. Expand
  18. PatriciaS.
    Oct 16, 2009
    2
    Don't waste your time bringing the kids, this is definitely an adult film. It was too long and way too emotionally involved. The most my children could gain from watching it was bad behavior. The best part of the movie was the popcorn.
  19. AmberM.
    Oct 17, 2009
    2
    This is not a kids movie!!! The kid is naughty, and the monsters are very negative. All my kids got out of it, is that it is funny to hit your friends and its okay to throw tantrums.
  20. KalinA.
    Oct 17, 2009
    2
    Great costumes, painful to sit through. Was confusing and lacked any sort of entertaining or smart dialogue. Doesn't capture the book or your attention. Don't waste your money.
  21. PatrickM
    Oct 20, 2009
    2
    I can't say enough about how painful it was to sit through this slow drudge of a movie. Nearly 1/2 the film centers around one of the characters pouting, screaming, breaking things, threatening and fighting each other. I'm a big fan of Spike Jonez (really like Adaptation), but he fumbled the ball on this clunker. If I want to watch spite filled people yell at each other for an I can't say enough about how painful it was to sit through this slow drudge of a movie. Nearly 1/2 the film centers around one of the characters pouting, screaming, breaking things, threatening and fighting each other. I'm a big fan of Spike Jonez (really like Adaptation), but he fumbled the ball on this clunker. If I want to watch spite filled people yell at each other for an hour and 1/2 all I have to do is watch my 3 year olds pre-school class. Expand
  22. RobbR
    Oct 21, 2009
    2
    Over hyped, over rated movie! I could not wait for the end of the LONG movie. DO NOT SEE AT THE THEATERS, bad enough to rent on DVD. Trust me you will see! THere is a reason why it was only on book form.
  23. CarolineM
    Dec 28, 2009
    2
    Not at all what I was expecting. When it started I thought I was watching an amateur movie trailer, but no it was the movie. I kept waiting for it to improve, but no again. Except for the creatures, it felt very amateurish. The storyline was minimal and repetitive. The whole thing was a tremendous disappointment.
  24. BillyG.
    Oct 16, 2009
    2
    Terrible! Way too long and depressing. Feel bad for all the kids who had their hopes dashed at this sad and boring film. Save your money and take the kids out bowling instead.
  25. JeffH.
    Oct 16, 2009
    2
    WAY too artsy and too much symbolism for kids to "get". He took a wonderful idea and butchered it to the point that the imagination of Max was really properly illustrated.
  26. TedJ.
    Oct 17, 2009
    2
    Nothing redeeming about this film. You'll want your money back halfway through. Boring story, no characters to get behind, Max is unlikable and annoying, the movie is dark and seems to carry no message. A terrible self indulgent effort by the director.
  27. JohnnyS
    Oct 18, 2009
    2
    Visually stunning, but incredibly boring and twee. The kid is annoying and unlikeable, and it is difficult to care about any of the characters.
  28. PatrickC
    Dec 17, 2009
    2
    For lack of strong dialogue, angry and lonely animals with all that derived from just being bored makes for an awful movie. Even if this wasn't "Where the wild things are" it would still have made for a bad movie in general. The soundtrack, costume design was good, but once again, if that was the highlight of any movie, then it's a terrible movie. It varies greatly from the For lack of strong dialogue, angry and lonely animals with all that derived from just being bored makes for an awful movie. Even if this wasn't "Where the wild things are" it would still have made for a bad movie in general. The soundtrack, costume design was good, but once again, if that was the highlight of any movie, then it's a terrible movie. It varies greatly from the book, a 10 minute book mind you, you can't turn that into a 100 minute movie when every second page has only 2-3 sentences. Max's claustrophobia early introduced had me worried every time he was in danger from the other inhabitants, especially overbearing strength. Finally Carol's 'development' was nothing short of miraculous at the end, which at best one could say "Only in Hollywood...". Expand
  29. Mar 22, 2012
    2
    The book is my all-time favorite children's story and still holds up as a wonderful tale well into my adulthood. So forgive me if I take it a little personally when (the normally competent and entertaining) Spike Jonze comes along and turns it into a complete bore. On top of being a snoozer, the world of the Wild Things is as stale and spartan as you can get... the complete opposite ofThe book is my all-time favorite children's story and still holds up as a wonderful tale well into my adulthood. So forgive me if I take it a little personally when (the normally competent and entertaining) Spike Jonze comes along and turns it into a complete bore. On top of being a snoozer, the world of the Wild Things is as stale and spartan as you can get... the complete opposite of the lush world created by Maurice Sendak. There are also moments of scariness that I don't believe young children should see despite it's questionable PG rating. So yeah, it's a kids' movie that's unsuitable for younger kids. Good call on that one, Spike. Altogether a huge, thudding disappointment that I would like to say would have Mr. Sendak rolling in his grave... except he's still alive... and he has a producer credit in the film. So an unfortunate big thumbs down to one of my literary heroes. :(.... Expand
  30. Sep 1, 2014
    2
    Oh boy! I don't know what to say about this awful and really boring movie
    .The little boy is a terrible actor and the movie is not funny or depressing or whatever,he's just boring.
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. For all the artfulness, the feel of the film is rough-hewn, almost primitive. It’s a fabulous tree house of a movie.
  2. Where the film falters is Jonze and novelist Dave Eggers' adaptation, which fails to invest this world with strong emotions.
  3. 50
    I have a vision of eight-year-olds leaving the movie in bewilderment. Why are the creatures so unhappy? That question doesn’t return a child to safety or anywhere else. Of one thing I am sure: children will be relieved when Max gets away from this anxious crew.