At this point, I’m just ready for “Where The Wild Things Are” to come out, cause a flurry of conversation, make whatever cultural mark it’s going to make, then end up on my shelf on BluRay where I can watch it any time I want. I have been carrying around all these complicated feelings about this movie since Christmas of 2007, when I saw it a very rough version, and as finished footage has started to show up, I hear people reacting to it, and I’m relieved to know I’m not crazy.
I think this longer trailer absolutely conveys what it is they’re hoping to accomplish with this film, and I’d say if you don’t like this trailer, you’re not going to warm to the movie instead. It’s very much a film about a little boy coming face to face with all the big giant scary feelings and ideas we all have inside us and having to learn how to handle all of those emotions and fears and weaknesses. It takes the deceptively simple Maurice Sendak book and turns it into a commentary on the process by which we move from wild, uncontrolled childhood to something more focused, the first steps towards adulthood.
In fact, looking at Twitter reactions (since all I can do on that accursed website now is look, for some reason) and Facebook posts and comments sections as other people post it, and being in the room in San Diego when the new footage premiered in Hall H, what amazes me is how this seems to be a film that punches right past nostalgia, right past reason, and somehow seems to be causing enormous emotional reactions even based on these short peeks at the material. I thought it was a really emotional movie in rough form, but I didn’t anticipate how the film seems to tear people’s hearts out from the moment the monsters start moving and talking. It’s fascinating. Obviously, Max Records, the young star of the movie, is a big part of the equation as well.
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And the new trailer shows you a whole lot of Max in action. And the monsters. In fact… check it out for yourself:
“LET THE WILD RUMPUS START!” That plus the music right there… it makes me feel like I’m standing up in a convertible driving 80 on a summer day. There’s a rush from how it all comes together, and if Spike can make me feel like that for the full two hours… if he can convince me that magic is real… then I’ll feel like the luckiest viewer alive.
Gorgeous. I can’t wait for everything to be done, tweaked, and ready to go so I can finally lay eyes on the finished version. I have a feeling it’s going to be a film we’re talking about years from now, arguing about perhaps, but definitely one that is still being seen and considered. I love that the trailer takes the time to introduce all the characters, all the monsters. And I love how mundane their names are. “Douglas.” “Ira.” “Judith.” “Alexander.” It’s charming. It somehow normalizes the outrageous.
Hopefully we’ll have more on this film as we get closer to release. In the meantime, have you read the interview I did with Spike Jonze about the movie? You should.
“Where The Wild Things Are” opens Oct. 16th, and will be playing both regular engagements and IMAX screens as well.
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