Review of Where The Wild (Weird) Things Are
The last time I wrote a review about a movie that wasn't a nonfiction film was for the movie There Will Be Blood. I was peeved at the time that the movie was being touted as a best picture candidate. I didn't agree. Now I've heard the same thing about this ridiculous movie. I had the misfortune of having to sit though this movie yesterday. We had three movies in mind but the times didn't work out, so we decided to give this one a chance. After all, some critics are calling this an instant classic. Iv'e heard it described as magical, wondrous, imaginative. Entertainment Weeklygave it an A. I'm here to tell you that there is nothing in this movie that is magical or wondrous. How about dreary, boring, drab, and sophomoric?
I've been duped before by movie critics who apparently have never read the children's story The Emperor's New Clothes. So let me be the first to say it: the emperor is naked. He's not wearing a stitch. If this movie doesn't show an 80% drop in ticket sales by this time next week I'd be surprised. Film critics apparently can't think for themselves. They all jump on a bandwagon and no one has the guts to jump off and say "wait a minute." Here are just a few of the movies that I've been duped into seeing: Eyes Wide Shut, The Blair Witch Project, Open Water, Borat.
This movie fails on every level, but the blame mostly lies with director and co-writer Spike Jonze and co-writer Dave Eggers. It's as if they went with the very first thing that popped into their minds and never bothered to do a rewrite. The plot, expanded from a ten sentence children's book that I have not read, is lamer than a children's cartoon. Poor Max is upset because he's not getting any attention. So he escapes to a mysterious island where people in goofy puppet costumes waddle around in a mystical forest that looks more like the woods on the outskirts of a salvage yard.
I know this is supposed to be a children's movie. But there isn't anything in this movie that could possibly appeal to anyone but maybe a boy the exact same age as Max. There's no humor. The soundtrack is annoying, the individual puppet characters are caricatures of caricatures. There were four people in the theater when we walked in. One old guy left half way through never to return.
Getting a film made these days is hard. And I give credit to everyone involved in taking a story from idea to finished product. I don't blame the actors. But this film was doomed from day one when they decided to go with the screenplay that was turned in. I've said it before. If it ain't on the page it won't be on the stage.