Where the Wild Things Are

Rated 1.0

Max Records, it’s not your fault. The unquestionably talented preteen star of this polarizing, and to my eyes unwatchable, film can’t be faulted for Dave Eggers’ abysmal script or the rudderless scribble of Spike Jonze’s direction. An ill-conceived expansion of the beloved Maurice Sendak book, Where the Wild Things Are imagines the book’s “misbehaving” young hero Max as the son of a single mother. After an explosive nighttime confrontation, Max runs away and sails to off a depressing fantasy world filled with bummed-out magical creatures; after about 20 minutes, I wished I was back in the suburbs. Where the Wild Things Are is a bold attempt at telling a serious story about the volatility of childhood and the healing powers of imagination by demystifying and dirtying up a children’s classic. But then so was Return to Oz.