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Where the Wild Things Are

✭ ✭ ✭ ✭   Read critic reviews

Australia, Germany, United States
·
2009

1h 41m

Director Spike Jonze
Starring Max Records, Catherine Keener, Lauren Ambrose, Ryan Corr
Genre Drama, Family, Fantasy, Science Fiction
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Max, a lonely pre-teen, imagines running away from his mom and sailing to a far-off land where large talking beasts -- Ira, Carol, Douglas, the Bull, Judith, and Alexander -- play rumpus, build forts, discover secret hideaways, and crown him as their king.

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WHAT ARE CRITICS SAYING?

50

The New Yorker by David Denby

I have a vision of eight-year-olds leaving the movie in bewilderment. Why are the creatures so unhappy? That question doesn’t return a child to safety or anywhere else. Of one thing I am sure: children will be relieved when Max gets away from this anxious crew.
75

ReelViews by James Berardinelli

The result is an involving experience for all but the most fidgety children and an opportunity for parents to enjoy (rather than endure) a motion picture with their offspring.
63

St. Louis Post-Dispatch by Joe Williams

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.
75

Chicago Sun-Times by Roger Ebert

The movie felt long to me, and there were some stretches during which I was less than riveted. Is it possible that there wasn't enough Sendak story to justify a feature-length film?
60

Variety by Todd McCarthy

Director Spike Jonze's sharp instincts and vibrant visual style can't quite compensate for the lack of narrative eventfulness that increasingly bogs down this bright-minded picture.

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