Generally favorable reviews - based on 37 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 339 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: The film tells the story of Max, a rambunctious and sensitive boy who feels misunderstood at home and escapes to where the Wild Things are. Max lands on an island where he meets mysterious and strange creatures whose emotions are as wild and unpredictable as their actions. The Wild Things desperately long for a leader to guide them, just as Max longs for a kingdom to rule. When Max is crowned king, he promises to create a place where everyone will be happy. Max soon finds, though, that ruling his kingdom is not so easy and his relationships there prove to be more complicated than he originally thought. (Warner Bros.) Collapse
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. 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.
  3. Reviewed by: Josh Modell
    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.
  4. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    This version of Where the Wilds Things Are isn’t about childhood at all but about childhood’s end and what’s gained and lost by it. That’s why very young kids, dull Disney princesses, overprotective parents, and self-serious grown-ups should probably stay away.
  5. To their credit, the creative team has retained the handmade look and unruly spirit of Maurice Sendak's bedtime fable; to their discredit, they haven't added enough narrative or emotional dimension to make it an effective movie.
  6. 50
    In their overly earnest attempt to flesh Sendak’s story out to 100 minutes, Jonze and his co-screenwriter, novelist Dave Eggers, have laboriously spelled out motivations (divorce is bad!), elaborated back stories -- and added reams of less-than-inspired dialogue.
  7. When faced as a director with the rudderless screenplay he (Jonze) co-wrote with Eggers, he's been powerless to energize it in any involving way. Sometimes you are better off with 10 sentences than tens of millions of dollars, and this is one of those times.

See all 37 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 62 out of 185
  1. KieranM.
    Oct 16, 2009
    The absolute most meaningful movie I've ever seen. That's maybe because I feel like I can relate to Max. I've felt emotions that I've never felt before. Truly amazing. Expand
  2. AtticusM
    Oct 20, 2009
    Beautiful... A very symbolic movie. A true work of art.
  3. Aug 17, 2012
    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 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 :) Expand
  4. Oct 8, 2011
    "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. Expand
  5. Nov 2, 2010
    If you are a fan of this book, or if your kids are just now becoming fans of the book, please do not let them watch this movie, it will ruin the book for them. This movie does no justice to it. The only way you could watch this movie and maybe enjoy it a bit is if you had nothing better to do and you rented this movie. Otherwise stay way. Expand
  6. KellyO
    Mar 15, 2010
    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" Expand
  7. SawyerC.
    Oct 17, 2009

See all 185 User Reviews

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