I took a break and decided to watch Where the Wild Things Are, thinking it would be a feel good show for kids.
You know, something Disney-esque.
Boy was I wrong – it got me bawling at the end of it all, and left me feeling unsettled. It definitely isn’t a film for children, but is more for adults, addressing childhood. Through a boy in a wolf suit and a bunch of fluffy animals, the show delves at the psyche of a child, the struggle to make sense of the world, the strains in relationships caused by age differences within a family, and the underlying love that binds the family together again. (amongst many other things…)
The movie starts off by painting Max as a lonely kid, because nobody else in his family is excited by his imaginary worlds. Nobody has the time or interest to share it with him. When her friends ruined Max’s fortress made of snow, his sister did nothing to make him feel better. When his rocket (made out of blankets) was ready to lift off, his mum was too busy flirting with her boyfriend to join him. Eventually he gets so upset that he crosses the line and gets very difficult. He bites his mum, and she gets hurt, and he says it’s not his fault, and he dashes out of the door.
In the dash to escaping the place he had come to dislike, Max finds himself … on a boat, which leads to an island, inhabited by a bunch of beasts who are all very distinct in their characters, and are possibly projections of Max’s personalities. Max finds himself telling them a bunch of lies which they believe, and they make him king. Then it hits you, that children are selfish and needy.
Then the movie does a touch-and-go on so many issues that leaves you perturbed, but I guess that’s life, you never really get a chance to understand things. In a quest to feel better, they fake a “war” which was supposed to be fun, but left people genuinely hurt. KW hurls rocks at 2 owls, her “best friends”, supposedly, to enjoy their company… amongst other things.
At the end of it you see that Carol gets upset and disappointed with Max. It causes this monster to do crazy things, like threaten to eat him and destroy things. Max explains to KW that it’s not Carol’s fault. (sounds familiar?). After lashing out at Max and belittling him, Carol stomps off, to realize that in a personal place he shared with Max, Max left a reminder of his love. He runs to be with him again, but Max had already left the island for home. Carol never gets to apologize. When Max returns to his home, he’s greeted by a warm hug from his mom and a warm bowl of soup. And if you know what I’ve been going through you’d kind of figure this is what got me all sniffy.
So this is a brief summary, the movie is so much more complex, I know I threw in some characters’ names which may not makes sense, but hey, watch it and think about it… (if you don’t it might just bore you).