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Where the Wild Things Are (2009)

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Yearning for escape and adventure, a young boy runs away from home and sails to an island filled with creatures that take him in as their king.

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(screenplay), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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3,671 ( 989)
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 7 wins & 53 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Max
Pepita Emmerichs ...
Max Pfeifer ...
Claire's Friend
Madeleine Greaves ...
Claire's Friend
Joshua Jay ...
Claire's Friend
...
Claire's Friend
...
Mom
...
...
...
Carol (voice)
...
...
Alexander (voice)
...
...
Judith (voice)
...
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Storyline

A young boy named Max has an active imagination, and he will throw fits if others don't go along with what he wants. Max - following an incident with Claire (his sister) and her friends, and following a tantrum which he throws as a result of his Mother paying more attention to her boyfriend than to him - runs away from home. Wearing his wolf costume at the time, Max not only runs away physically, but runs toward a world in his imagination. This world, an ocean away, is inhabited by large wild beasts, including one named Carol who is much like Max himself in temperament. Instead of eating Max like they normally would with creatures of his type, the wild things befriend Max after he proclaims himself a king who can magically solve all their problems. Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Let the wild rumpus start! See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for mild thematic elements, some adventure action and brief language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

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Language:

Release Date:

16 October 2009 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

More Rice  »

Box Office

Budget:

$100,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$32,695,407 (USA) (18 October 2009)

Gross:

$77,233,467 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

An early test scene made by Disney back when the movie was expected to be done through traditional hand-drawn animation, featured Max writing his name on the wall of his room with a marker and chasing his dog down the stairs. The opening scene of this film is similar to this, as it features Max chasing and wrestling with his dog. Though ultimately, the scene is an homage to the second picture in the book, featuring Max in his wolf suit, chasing his dog down the stairs with a fork in his hand. Disney's scene can now be found on YouTube. See more »

Goofs

When we first see the wild things, they are seen in silhouette, and are shown to be speaking, yet their mouths don't move when their talking. This could be a way to save money of CGI, as the mouths were moved using computers, and they could assume that people wouldn't notice through the dark lighting. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Max: Hey, Claire. Wanna see something great?
Claire: [on the phone] Who else was there?
Max: It's an igloo! I made it.
Claire: Yeah, my brother.
Max: Hey, Claire!
Claire: I can't. We're supposed to go to my dad's that weekend.
Max: The snowplows left some snow across the street, and I dug a hole into it.
Claire: Go and play with your friends.
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Crazy Credits

The logos for Warner Bros., Legendary Pictures, and Village Roadshow Pictures are covered with Max's scribblings. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Bum Reviews: Where the Wild Things Are (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

Sailing Home
(uncredited)
Written by Karen O
Performed by Karen O and the Kids
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Brilliant film if sadness and hopelessness was its intent.
21 October 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Last night we went to see Spike Jonez's film adaptation of Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak. I can't say that the film was bad. Considering that everyone in our party, who ranged in age from 7 to 42, had an incredibly strong reaction to it, I have to admit that it probably is quite good. It doesn't mean however, that any of us liked it. None of us did.

As a child, I found the book a little creepy and maybe even sad, but the last images, those of Max returning to his own room on the very night that he had left it and finding his supper, left for him still warm, redeemed some of the angst of the book. Those last few lines left this little reader feeling relieved and hopeful that tomorrow would be a better day for young Max. The film offered no such relief from the considerable gloom and sadness it inflicted.

In fact, Jonez's adaptation was overwhelmingly sad from beginning to end. Worse, there was a weighty hopelessness to it all. Jonez's characters, whether human or monster were so wholly deficient that they appear forever locked in a cycle of longing for love, understanding and acceptance without any apparent means to make it happen. Not one of them presented the strength in character to make those slight alterations of growth and understanding that would break the barrier and connect with the very creature standing next to him, who although desirous of the exact same thing, is somehow rendered unreachable.

The effect was so powerful that even the chatty, joyful eight year old girl in our group left the theater legitimately depressed, an emotion that is completely new to her. If the director's intention was to leave his audience with this level of hopelessness, then the film is brilliant. I myself will not be purchasing the DVD.


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