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Still shot from the movie: Where the Wild Things Are.

Where the Wild Things Are

Max (Max Records) may be having trouble adjusting to his mom's (Catherine Keeper) single status and new boyfriend (Mark Ruffalo), but when he runs away to an imaginary island Where the Wild Things Are, he discovers these monsters don't live in a paradise either. This movie is an adaptation of Maurice Sendak's classic children's story. Get the movie review and more. »


Overall: B-
Violence: C+
Sexual Content: A-
Language: B+
Drugs/Alcohol: A-
Run Time: 101
Theater Release: 16 Oct 2009
Video Release: 02 Mar 2010
MPAA Rating: PG
See Canadian Ratings
How We Determine Our Grades

mef says: Oct. 16, 2009

We went to this movie hoping it would be like the book. But it turned out to be a depressing disturbing and very different movie. I hated how they sterio typed about single moms. This is not a movie that I recommend taking kids to it is extremely odd.

mommytorres says: Oct. 17, 2009

I have 3 children; 12.5 y/o son, 11 y/o daughter, and a 7.5 y/o son. I couldn’t even guess at how many times we have read this book! When we saw the preview the first time for this movie, we knew that we were going to see it! I’ll admit, I didn’t read ANY reviews for this movie before going. Normally I read at least 2 reviews before taking my children to see a movie (or before renting/watching)...but just the fact it was a film based on a book we love so much…I skipped the reviews this time. Now, my children enjoyed this movie and on the way home they asked if we could buy it when it is released on DVD. That being said, my children don’t scare easily and have a good understanding of reality and make believe. Within the first 20 minutes of this movie, no less than 5 children were crying and mom or dad had to take them out to the hallway. I would NOT recommend this movie to a child younger than 5! If you are thinking about taking your young child (or child that scares easy) to see this movie, I strongly recommend going ALONE the first time around to see if you think your child could handle the darker parts of the film. The cost of ONE ticket will be worth it if it saves you from standing in the hallway for 60% of the movie and dealing with possible nightmares for a week. If you can’t or don’t want to pre-watch this film at the theater…I recommend waiting until it comes out on DVD so you can pre-watch it that way. If you rent it and they are scared, at least you have more control (power button, fast forward) and they can be in a comfortable environment.
For parents of older kids…this was a good movie! There were some parts that I worried about with my 7 y/o, but all 3 of my children really loved the movie (and it’s extremely rare for them to LOVE the same movie!).

TJ says: Oct. 18, 2009

I don’t know what kind of idiot would turn a great classic children’s book into such a ridiculous movie as this. We just left the theater and I couldn’t believe what I saw. The movie was NOT for children and to be honest even adults may struggle to get it. The family in front of us had two girls around 6 or 7 and they were crying the whole time. This director did a terrible job. You couldn’t pay me to see this movie again. Do not waste your money.

Cadillac says: Oct. 20, 2009

I agree.  This wasn’t a good movie in anyway.  I took my two children to see it.  They are eight and nine years old.  They didn’t like it either and we left the theater feeling down.  The characters were just a group of depressed dis-functional adolescence who could not get along and were subject to violent or cruel outburst.  I think the movie butchered the original story and I will be wary of anything this director produces in the future.

Mom of One says: Oct. 26, 2009

What a horrible first movie for my son! We got our money back, but I can’t erase what my son, (or I) saw. It was so dark. I’ve learned my lesson, review everything!

RosemaryG says: Nov. 01, 2009

This movie is about how children/Wild Things perceive events and how they express their feelings.  It is filmed from a child’s perspective.  The movie is full of extremely powerful, raw and tumultuous emotions, very much how young children react, with many abrupt mood swings.  The problem is that the Wild Things are enormous and toothy, so when they express themselves negatively, it’s scary, startling and unpredictable.  I went with a large group of children aged 6-10, and several of the younger children cried.  However, we did a lot of talking before and after the movie about feelings, what happens when we get in trouble, comparing the book to the movie, our favourite parts, etc. so they were well-prepared.  Also, after the movie they all rated it: none of them hated it, and most totally loved it.  A good review of the movie can be found in Maclean’s Magazine, Oct. 26 edition (sorry, it’s a Canadian mag).

Fred says: Dec. 30, 2009

DO NOT TAKE YOUNG CHILDREN TO SEE THIS MOVIE! It was absolutely horrid. I took my 8 yr old daughter; both of us being very eager to see this film that is being hailed as a ‘modern masterpiece’ and an ‘instant classic’. We sat there stunned as this wonderful book was totally gutted and left hanging to dry. Nothing like the book at all. All the monsters were constantly arguing and mad at each other, everybody seemed like they were manic-depressive, running around feeling guilty, depressed, angry, sad, etc. The entire spectrum of negative emotions was thoroughly explored in this movie. I felt manipulated while watching this steaming turd. It felt like some strange government psy-op, designed to bring out the worst in people.

There were hardly ANY happy moments throughout the entire movie; all the characters (both human and non-human) moped about sadly throughout the film; crying, wallowing in self-pity, anguish, depression, and self-inflicted psychological punishment. Several small children were crying in the theater because it was so sad and negative, I’m not kidding.

I am so angry at being deceived. The ads for this film portray it as a positive, magical journey, when it was just the opposite. All it is is a flaming exercise in negativity and self-indulgent wallowing. The movie is jam-packed with subliminal messages and suggestions, all designed to make you feel bad about yourself and others. This one will make you feel awful inside for several hours after you leave the theater. NO REDEEMING QUALITIES WHATSOEVER. Nothing but a big shameful sad-fest. I wish I could get my money back. No, I wish I could go back in time and choose never to see it.

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