Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Antidote

"Where The Wild Things Are"

I'm not sure that it's possible to review this film while sticking to my rule. You know the rule, the one about not comparing a book to a film. I'll give it a go, because I'm a stickler for rules, but it'll be a challenge.

This is a film which is best enjoyed by adults in the company of other adults. I suggest seeing it at an evening session on a weeknight so as to ensure that no children are in the audience. Just as the best time to appreciate childhood is after you've grown up, just as the best time to appreciate your own children is when they are fast asleep, so is this film best watched in a peaceful, silent cinema. This will allow you to envelope yourself in the fantastic world of Max and his wild friends, and it will ensure that the images of his tiny boat, his massive nest-like fort, and his feathered and furred comrades in arms, all reach their mark.

This film enters new, uncharted territory and it will take patience, concentration and an open heart to understand and feel it, much like parenting, and more specifically - much like parenting boys. Also very much like the creating, developing and nurturing of a young family. Yes, the protagonist is a young boy, yes, most of the other characters are dressed in massive monster outfits, but this is not a film for children as much as a film ABOUT children.

If there's a boy in your life that you loved or love or dream of loving, then you're guaranteed to find a connection with this film. If you are still a novice to the many mysteries of childhood then this may not be the film for you, but that's all right, perhaps you'll meet a Max one fine day in your still-unmapped future, and this film will be there for you, quietly biding its time until you sail onto its shores.



Final word: You'll walk out of the cinema mesmerised and a bit disoriented. You know that saccharine Hollywood taste in your mouth? The one that you get after seeing a Hollywood film starring children? Well, this is its antidote.

13 comments:

Julia said...

You are a poet at movie reviewing! Seriously. Now off to dig up a trailer on Wild Things...

Wendy said...

Please keep going to the movies! You write the type of reviews that I wish I could read more often.

Mary said...

Oh delicious review.

I do need to see this with the kids but will watch again on my own!

Anonymous said...

I believe you just found yourself a nice job.
Paola

trasha said...

cannot wait to go see this.

Badger said...

I am LOVING your film reviews! LOVING!

RW said...

Just reading your review brought back such intense emotions. I could not even talk about the film the next day without crying. I was a complete mess. My heart ached throughout the entire film. It still aches when I think about it.

kmkat said...

Pleasepleaseplease keep doing the film reviews.

blackbird said...

BRILLIANT.

Jodie said...

have just been to the morning screening - My heart is full .

librarygirl said...

Great review. So thoughtful and beautifully expressed. Hope to catch it soon....

Barrett Bonden said...

Just read somewhere that Max is a mere nine sentences long. Can that be true? Whatever, every sentence is embedded in me (especially the denouement) and none can be recalled without the expectation that a two-year-old will wriggle and kick in anticipation beside me. There's an unexpectedness about the style which seems to be preparing children for a lifetime of enjoying books. Does the film add something to the book? Does it take the book into another dimension? I salute your courage and apologise for talking about the book rather than the film.

Avus said...

I have always felt that "Where the Wild Things Are" was a delightful, seminal childrens' story (the ones to whom I have read it, have enjoyed it, anyway). So I have been wary of the film. However your delightful review tempts me to now see it.
We shall see......