Where the Wild things are – Spike Jonze – I felt cynically opposed to what I assumed, with an internalised sneer, would be the sentimentalist tactics of this film: oh, I see, fantastical monsters eh? But with a moralising, growing-up poignancy eh? Sorta like a Never Never land for the furry…I see your game, Wild Things…and I ain’t buying…you can build strange dens, howl and playfully knock down trees, but no siree – no allegorical, tear jerkin’ Jim Hensen, Gruffalo grumbling puppetry is gonna hold my heartstrings hostage!
I cried. I mean, I was a bit hungover…but mainly that was irrelevant…it was beautiful. Begone foul cynicism and embrace this tender, imaginative and visually startling film. Complete with a terrific soundtrack (from Karen O of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs), it unravelled any sense of superior distance I had puffed up in misguided preconceptions and provided a genuinely moving, well-written and exciting evocation of childhood imagination. It is an imagination that this adaptation of the children’s book respects is also twinned with a vivid and troubling anxiety. Hugely and unexpectedly enjoyable. 8/10