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Where The Wild Things Are [DVD] [2009]

 Exempt   DVD
3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (117 customer reviews)
Price: 17.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Product details

  • Format: Colour, DVD-Video, PAL
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: Italian
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Classification: Exempt
  • Studio: Favored Nations
  • DVD Release Date: 12 Oct 2009
  • Run Time: 160 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (117 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B002AWJEU8
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 79,424 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)



Through his handcrafted ode to the trials of childhood, Spike Jonze puts his own unique imprint on Maurice Sendak's enduring classic. In the prologue, 9-year-old Max (Max Records) stomps around the house, feeling neglected. When his mom (Catherine Keener) sends him to bed without supper, Max runs away (something he doesn't do in the book). He finds a boat and sails to a distant land where fuzzy monsters are raising a rumpus in the forest. Since his wolf suit allows him to fit right in, he joins the fray, catching the eye of Carol (James Gandolfini), who notes, approvingly, "I like the way you destroy stuff. There's a spark to your work that can't be taught." With that, they pronounce the diminutive creature king, hoping he can bring cohesion to their fractured family. After Max comes across Carol's scale-model town, he decides they should build a real one, but the project stalls as Alexander (Paul Dano) and Douglas (Chris Cooper) mope, Judith (Catherine O'Hara) browbeats Ira (Forest Whitaker), and Carol pines for K.W. (Lauren Ambrose), who prefers the company of owls Bob and Terry. Max realises he has to make a choice: stay with the wild things or return home, where he has to keep his aggressive impulses in check.

For readers of Sendak's slim tome, his decision won't come as a surprise, but Jonze ends the story on a lovely grace note. Until that time, the squabbling is a bit much--these monsters never stop talking--but Jonze, cowriter Dave Eggers, the Jim Henson Company, and singer/songwriter Karen O. have gone all-out to re-create the inner world of a child with as much empathy as was mustered for the inner adult world of Jonze's Being John Malkovich. --Kathleen C. Fennessy

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A film about lost childhood innocence... 10 Mar 2012
By Rusty
Simply the best film about the forgotten experiences and coming of ages of childhood, as you are ever likely to see. Forget the negative reviews you might have seen (!) - you always get the odd crank reviewer online - this film is simply unforgettable. But for the right reasons. Okay, so its got Tony S as the lead male 'Monster' character's voice, but TV actors have to earn a living somehow.

Regarding the film, just imagine being transported for an hour and a half into the mind and world of a child, and you can start to appreciate what a great job Spike Jonze has done in bringing the book to the silver screen. Remember this is the same director that brought you 'Being John Malkovich', so expect the same level of class and inspired film-making to be abundant here. I dont care if you are 7 or 107, but you gotta love this film. I do recommend that if you are watching it with your youngest son/daughter, try and explain some of the 'darker' scenes when they come along, as they might not grasp the redemptive qualities of them unless you do (and you are the child's whole world remember). Definitely the kind of film that all ages of film enthusiast can watch and gain something to take away from it. Beware though; this film will remind you again of that fateful day in childhood when all the innocence finally disappeared, forever. Its a bit like learning that Sant-e Claus doesnt exist. So, if you aint ready for the emotional trauma of the opening up of an old, old wounds, dont watch. Else, enjoy enjoy enjoy. This aint no Muppet Show.
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30 of 32 people found the following review helpful
Firstly, a lot of the negative reviews on here are laced with sanctimonious attitudes about "mental health problems" and "dysfunctional people" which I find a bit unsettling. As if having slightly troubled characters somehow invalidates this film's inherent worth.

Secondly, this was not primarily marketed as a children's film. So I think it's disingenuous for reviewers to criticise it for not being something which it never pretended to be. That's not to say it can't appeal to children, I think for many children this film could be a very rewarding and enchanting experience (unless they happen to be the perfect spawn of all those perfect parents cited above). Obviously it depends on the individual child's tastes.

I don't think anyone should be arrogant enough to presume to tell others that this film is not suitable for children, I saw nothing in the film that even remotely makes it unsuitable, unless you wish your child to live in an eternal bubble protected know...humanity and all its complexities. There is certainly nothing profane or any needlessly violent content.

Thirdly, I can, however, see why people struggle to like this. The story is very simple, quite dark thematically, and there isn't much plot or narrative drive. It's more about atmosphere and subtle exploration of themes of identity. However, that's probably why I enjoyed it. The characters have distinct personalities and the interactions between them is very interesting, occasionally funny and ultimately powerful. The soundtrack helps create a really magical atmosphere and the film packs an emotional punch.

Personally, I feel that Where the Wild Things Are is a very unique and moving cinematic experience. I would recommend it to anyone and everyone.
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41 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A film about children, not for them 30 May 2010
Format:Blu-ray|Verified Purchase
This film is for anyone who still has memories of their childhood, and it is a film that will bring those memories crashing back to the surface. This is not strictly a film for kids, which is why many parents were disappointed when they took their children to see it. As I am only 16 myself this film was highly poignant, bringing home to me the fact that the dull world of adulthood beckons and that there's no turning back to the past. To add to this I could relate very much to Max, his home life and his wild imagination so I left the cinema feeling pretty emotional!

People have said that the film is plotless and that nothing happens, but that isn't stricly true. Max runs away from home and sails to the island of the Wild Things who, fearing his "magic powers", make him their king. They feel it is up to Max to keep the sadness away, to make the island a better place, but things don't necessarily work out for the best. The film itself is beautifully done, with golden-brown cinematography that evokes the atmosphere of a sunny autumn day just before winter arrives. Jonze has a great eye for art direction: for example the the Wild Things' homes are constructed from sticks in an organic, Henry Moore-esque fashion. It's a visual look which I definitely haven't seen in any other film. You would think that the source material by Maurice Sendak, being only 10 sentences long, is not nearly enough to make for a 100 minute film but writers Jonze and Dave Eggers have done an excellent job in fleshing out a story and the characters. The absence of a father in the original story here means a divorce, and all 7 of the Wild Things represent a different aspect of Max's personality.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Fast and perfect trade. :-)
Published 16 days ago by vibe henriksen
1.0 out of 5 stars Depressing and disappointing
I'm a teen who has experienced serious low points and I love to watch children's movies as they're always so full of happiness. Read more
Published 23 days ago by Phoebe Symons
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 1 month ago by Mrs V J Brooks
4.0 out of 5 stars 'STEP INTO 'MAX'S OWN WORLD'
As a child i suspect most of us have visited an imaginary world in which we have...control ?
9 year-old 'Max' feels that everyone's against him at home and craves... Read more
Published 1 month ago by rbmusicman
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 2 months ago by tachyon
4.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant for whole family.
I loved this book as a kid and couldn't wait to watch it when it was out. Although the story was a little different to the book it is made so so well and so creatively.
Published 2 months ago by Ella Walker
Despite the interesting premise, an great costumes, this has NO story, an is more like spending a long session watching a mentally disturbed child run around an make noise. Read more
Published 2 months ago by vlc
5.0 out of 5 stars Great film
Great film for all boys, young and older, superb watch for your budding little monsters! Great depiction of the book
Published 3 months ago by sue
1.0 out of 5 stars The Worst Film I've ever watched
The book is a classic - the book bears no resemblance to it. We watched this in the pictures and all three of the children I took to see it were completely confused by the sad... Read more
Published 6 months ago by Rowena Simmons
3.0 out of 5 stars its ok
I haven't managed to watch all the way through yet, ive tried watching it about 6 times and always fall asleep, its really weird at the beginning aswell :/ I wish Id got the... Read more
Published 8 months ago by PJ 83
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