This is an adaptation of Maurice Sendak's classic children's story. In this adaptation, Max has trouble getting the attention he demands at home. After throwing a fit he runs away and travels a distance to an island where the Wild Things live. After spending some time there and growing up a bit (emotionally) he realizes he needs to return home, and is ready to better contribute to his family life.
Entertainment Value - C
This was an OK show, with potential to be really good. For a kids show, the tone was rather depressing throughout, even the music did nothing to brighten up the film. The colors through out were a drab gray and brown, maybe a little too artsy for its good. The 5 year old behavior in an older kid was a little annoying. The Wild Things were not as wild as I thought they should be, no gnashing teeth or too terrible roars. I guess it is a children's story and can't afford to get too out of hand. I wouldn't go out of my way to watch this one. Save your self 96 minutes and read the book again.
Moral Value - Failure to Communicate? - 4
What a lonely life Max led! The movie did a decent job showing that the mom loved her son, but it was kind of odd she didn't mention anything about calling the police or running out after him searching for hours in the rainy night. I liked the ending in the book a whole lot better, where Max never actually leaves his room, but when he "returns" he finds his dinner waiting for him and it's still hot.
There is a lot of trying to "fit in." Max tries to fit in with his sister's friends; Carol tries to fit in with Judith and the other Wild Things; both end up stumbling over their lack of self-control and social skills.
Max really gets a good look at his own life when he becomes the person responsible for making all the Wild Things happy (the role he thought his mother owned back home). He realizes that it's no party being in charge, that life is tough for everyone all around and you've just got to carry on. The strongest message I found in the film was in seeing Max realize that stepping outside of himself really helped him put his behavior in perspective; he began to understand that he was not the only person in the world, and that others deserve happiness as well, to which he needed to learn to contribute.
It was kind of cool how they mapped a lot of Max's, Claire's, and the Mom's personalities in the different Wild Things. Obviously the place wasn't real and was more a figment of Max's imagination, but I think they did a good job representing his imaginative journey.