By Austiano Riviera -
As a trailer critic, I’m used to getting crapped on by “film” critics – you know, those annoying guys who, instead of enjoying a movie, scribble silly notes on yellow pads and yawn a lot. They tend to shift a lot in their seats, and chomp popcorn loudly (I think a lot of them are quite chubby).
Roger Ebert once said in an interview that “movie trailers are not art, they can’t be art, they will never be art.” Well, Mr. Ebert, I beg to differ. And as substantial evidence, I present to you this week’s movie trailer review: Where the Wild Things Are.
Where the Wild Things Are, incase you are unfamiliar with it, is an award winning, classic children’s book. While the trailer is live action, it follows the some basic storyline of the illustrated version.
Now, I’m going to break this review into two sections. The first is for people who have read the book and understand the plot as it pans out in the trailer. The second is for people who have never read the book. So, please, if you have never read the book, skip forward to the section I have specifically written for you, and DO NOT read the first section. If you are familiar with the book, keep reading, but STOP AFTER YOUR SECTION. No cheating please, seriously, this is important.
FOR THOSE WHO HAVE READ THE BOOK
If you are an Arcade Fire fan, or, generally enjoy the sound of music (not the musical!), take notice that the trailer is set to an acoustic version of Arcade Fire’s Wake Up. I never heard this version before, but since seeing this trailer, I’ve grown to enjoy it more than the original.
BTW, can you believe there are people who never read this book? I mean, seriously, did they grow up in an orphanage? No, they couldn’t have, because even orphanages have this book in the reserve section. Probably street rats. Like Aladdin. I liked that movie. Lol at Jafar’s fail at the end. Anyway, it blows my mind that some people are so sheltered. I mean, I think the value system I cherish as an adult is based on Where the Wild Things Are.
Anywho, quick refresher on the story: Max is dressed like a little demon; he acts up and gets sent to bed early without supper. Soon, Max imagines he is in a faraway land filled with “wild things” who crown him their king. Basically, Max rules this land and gets to push the wild things around even though he is about 1/10th their size and 10 years old. Go figure.
The trailer drops you right in the middle of Max’s imagination. It’s a pseudo-reality mash up of Max’s real life and the world of the wild things. The music strikes a note with the story, especially when we see Max catch his Mother showing affection to a man (likely a boyfriend).
I think I’ve watched this trailer 20 times – 10 times to watch it, and 10 just to hear the song. It’s the type of trailer that sucks you in, and makes you remember being young and seeing things you don’t understand. Remember when you would let your imagination pull you away into a secret world? It doesn’t matter if you played with dolls, created a secret pillow fortress in your room, or played with dolls inside a secret pillow fortress in your room (how would we know, you were inside the secret fortress?). In this case, Max creates a world of wild monsters, but we’ve all been there – we’ve all escaped to that secret place.
Someone who never read the book would probably think this trailer is silly – a bunch of monster’s jumping around and tossing some kid through the forest. It’s easy to poke fun at the wild things, as they do look a little silly. But if you let your imagination take over, remember…the children’s book was sort of silly. You knew when you read it that the mysterious land of the wild things was all in Max’s head. Yet, you enjoyed it anyway. This trailer is the same way. Forget about all the silliness, and remember how you felt when you read the book as a kid.
So stop thinking so much for a second, and while you’re watching the trailer, look at the Wild Things, and believe, even for just a moment, that Max was king of the wild things. Just because it doesn’t seem possible, does that mean it’s make-believe?
Where the Wild Things Are is rated for all ages. Definitely download this one in HD, you’ll want to watch it more than once.
FOR THOSE WHO HAVE NEVER READ THE BOOK
Hello, and thank you for skipping to the appropriate section. I never read the book as a kid either, and it’s good to find other people who never read it as well. Personally, I don’t see what the big deal is, but don’t worry, even though you haven’t read Where the Wild Things are, I think you will enjoy this trailer, as I did.
Right from the beginning, you know something is up. Little Max awakens to being kidnapped by a giant hairy monster. But, where most kids would be frightened, Max is surprisingly calm, even when the monster says in a creepy voice “I want to show you something.”
That’s where all that “How to avoid a sexual predator – don’t-get-in-the-white-van elementary school training should kick in. But it doesn’t…luckily though, this trailer is for all ages, and the hairy monster only wanted to show Max his creepy miniature doll arena.
The trailer cuts to Max being in a classroom, ignoring his teacher because he can’t stop looking outside toward a brewing thunderstorm. He looks scared…and he should be…because the monster comes during storms. That’s when he takes you. That’s when he, “shows you something.”
We then learn that not only is Max an excellent sailor, but his mother is a drunk and…a little frisky. Max sees this and runs away to the only one who shows him affection: the big hairy monster guy.
I can’t tell you too much more…that would spoil it. But let’s just say Max gets “tossed” around by a gang of monsters…but he seems to be having fun. And that’s what this trailer is all about: fun with hairy monsters. They do look a little fake. Kind of like giant muppets, only creepier.
But, did you notice the music? If anything, this trailer is worth watching just to hear the acoustic version of Arcade Fire’s Wake Up. It’s an excellent song – I think it’s even better than the original.
So don’t sweat that you never read the book. You will really enjoy this trailer – it is a little demented and suggestive, but I think it comes together well at the end when the Monsters all scream together in ecstasy. Definitely download this – in HD – you may even want to keep it readily available on the Desktop!