Sunday, 30 January 2011


Director: Spike Jonze
Running time: 101 mins (approx)
Certification (UK): PG

Genre: Drama/Book Adaptation
UK release date 11th December 2009

Watched on Sky+ Saturday 30th January 2011.


First of all, I had better say for the record that I have never read Maurice Sendak’s much loved book of the same title published in 1963. It’s just one of those that never crossed my path. The film, well, it didn’t really strike a chord with me (which I’ll probably get a lot of stick for) but hey, you can’t like everything. But more of that later, here’s a very brief summary first (summary haters please have a snowball fight while I write the next paragraph).

Max in a high spirited lad with a very active imagination who has a habit of throwing a tantrum when things don’t go his way. After an argument with his mother, Connie, he storms out of the house and runs away. The thing is, he also runs away in his head to a place across an ocean (yes, you guessed it) to Where the Wild Things Are. They take the form of giant furry monsters, for want of a better description, and Max befriends them. One of them, Carol, is just like Max, strong willed and prone to the odd tantrum or two. Max persuades them to let him be their king, but he soon finds that being a king is a bit harder than he first thought.

Now, technically I can’t fault this film, it’s beautifully shot with some excellent special effects used for the ’Wild Things’. My problem begins and ends with the character of Max, if you can’t identify with Max then the rest of it just falls apart I’m afraid. Don’t get me wrong, I thought it was a fine performance from Max Records as Max; it’s just that the character didn’t resonate with me.

It’s a shame because I was really looking forward to watching this and I feel a bit let down by it. I grew up in the countryside, climbed trees, grazed my knees and did all the fun things children do, but at the end of the day I was always happy to go home. I guess that’s where I differ from Max; I never had a need for somewhere to escape to. But I digress; I cannot say if it is a good representation of the book, I’m sure there are others out there who can answer that. For me, a bit of a disappointment and so not recommended.

My score: 5.4/10

(RT = Rotten Tomatoes)
IMDb Page:
RT Page:
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