New Where the Wild Things Are trailer, you guys:

I think these trailers are sending the wrong message. I love them so much that I am fully expecting this movie to “fix” everything. I don’t even know what that means! And yet that is what I anticipate will happen. We’ll all go to see it, and the Matrix will change from wet and gray-green to bright and a full-color spectrum. The internet will get turned off because it’s too mean, and brother will not lift up sword against brother, and eracism, because life is precious, and God, and the Bible.

Of course, that’s not going to happen.

Not only because a movie can’t “fix” anything, much less everything (and if a movie could “fix” things it wouldn’t be a children’s movie directed by the heir to the Spiegel catalog fortune) but because that goes against what Maurice Sendak’s book is about in the first place. Where the Wild Things Are is all about the inescapable nature of life as it’s presented to you, not only by the laws of reality, but within. All of us must face up to the world as it is given to us, for worse but also for better. Max eventually grows homesick in his kingdom, and despite his “unhappiness” at home (tangential and vague at best, in the book, probably elaborated in the movie for dramatic impact) he returns of his own desire, to find hot supper waiting no less. There is no self-created replacement for being genuinely loved.

Sorry. I get really sentimental talking about this stuff. I always have, ever since I left my kingdom. It was worth it, though. I guess.

Comments (91)
  1. I didn’t read this book as a child, so I feel like I’m missing out on the intense emotional journey everyone else is having. I guess I’m going to have to stick to being really sad about John Hughes.

    • Here, you can have my time machine, and after you KILL HITLER, you can stop at your childhood and leave yourself the book for Christmas! Success!

    • Ashley, I feel the same way. Except I’m also experiencing WTWTA syndrome with John Hughes, as I somehow avoided most of his films. So where do I turn? I guess I must go into my self-world.

    • Ah, this is the one time where my being one of the youngest people on this site is an asset! It’s a wonderful book, even for adults. I think you’d enjoy it even if you read it now. It’s never too late, etc.

      As excited as I am for this movie [very] I am motherfucking pissed off at that trailer. I try to turn down the volume. I mouse over the volume control. Oh, hi, volume control! WAIT. WHERE DID YOU GO? As soon as I try and click on it, it pops back into the toolbar. What? It is too late in the day and I am too drunk to deal with this shit, Wild Things.

  2. Aw I want to upvote Gabe’s heart!

  3. No Gabe, the Answer is 42. Where the Wild Things Are is the Question.

  4. As much as I love these trailers (and let’s face it you guys, I obviously really love these trailers. You love these trailers. Your boyfriends and girlfriends even love these trailers!), I tend to remember the “Wild Things” being a bit more wild in the book, right? Like they were going to eat, Max when he decides to leave, yeah?

    I’m just asking because if they’re building them up to be so nice and amazing and then they turn on him to eat him, well, that’s probably going to destroy my heart and soul. Seriously. Ugh. I’m supposed to be jaded and cynical.

    • Passerby  |   Posted on Aug 7th, 2009 -38

      Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see

    • I’ll answer your question: The book has pretty much no plot and no characters, beyond Max. I don’t think any of the “wild things” even have names, and Max doesn’t really have a relationship with any of them. It’s a very short book about a boy who one night has this fantasy and then goes back home. Don’t get me wrong, it’s great, but to even get a movie out of it you would have to significantly stray from the book. So, I hope it’s great, but I worry about the plot that’s been put around it — but all the same, I trust Spike Jonze.

      • Alright, so I’ve gotten a hold of a copy of the script (over the interwebz) and can squelch any fears that the expansion of the plot from the short story to a 90+ minute movie negatively impacts the effect of the story. Also the script doesn’t ever really “stray” from the book. It’s really like they just took the exact template of what happens in the book and literally expanded it to proportion. It follows all the same key points as the book, but just expounds upon the motivation behind each happening, which really just enriches the story’s profundity and meaning. The script is touching, bizarre, and very very original, and I can’t wait to see the visuals tied to it.

    • No, you’re definitely right, and I think that’s the problem with escapism — eventually, the places you imagine will want to keep you forever, but you can’t do that because there’s a great big awesome real world to live in. I think it’s incredibly hard for most kids to give up their kingdoms.

  5. One of the major reasons I feel like this movie is so symbolic to the 18-28 year old demographic (falling directly into place with those who read this site, I think), is because the book had its major resurgence in popularity during the mid-to-late 80′s through the early-to-mid 90′s. Therefore, this generation has an unusually strong attachment to the book, making it a super nostalgia trip. On top of that, this movie, and the book, are representations of the loss of childhood and innocence in a way, and the 18-28 year olds who grew up with it engraved in their consciousness are just now coming to realize their mortality as their childhoods fade away behind them…. sorry, Gabe set the tone first.

    • While I agree, the Trailer (And the Movie) looks amazing, I don’t share the same resonance with you on this notable, but not overwhelming book. Shit, in first, grade, I was more into reading what happens with Shiloh. And then that movie, when I was too old to care, but saw it with small cousins anyway (ahem), was sorta fail.

      • square jordan  |   Posted on Aug 7th, 2009 -3

        We all know what happened to Shiloh Lebeef. He went on to star in Jerry Bruckhenheimenwiezer’s Go-Bots movie and play Han Solo’s son, right?

    • this looks like the type of movie that could be as amazing as we remember our childhood movies being. i have an intense love for Labyrinth and The Neverending Story and the trailers sort of take me to that place of childlike innocence when you didn’t have to be cynical about everything. so that’s definitely a nostalgia trip i’m looking forward to in october.
      plus the visuals look as enchanting as the Sendak’s illustrations.

    • Not to mention that 18-28 is the most nostalgic age demographic. The stress and responsibilities that inevitably come with the onset of actual adulthood make one yearn for the time not very long ago at all really when everything was pretty much taken care of for you. Also, real adults don’t have time for nostalgia and old people don’t remember the past clearly enough or are already used to real life anyway, so they don’t feel it as sharply as the still-pretty-young.

    • Where The Wild Things Are is what I learned to read on. I guess Gabe is wrong about it not making a difference.

    • ….I just like The Arcade Fire.

  6. Also, this trailer is fucking incredible.

  7. these trailers remind me of that time when i had a heart. a time before the early 00s, before Internet and terrorists and rising gasoline costs crushed it.

  8. Duncan  |   Posted on Aug 7th, 2009 +5

    yeah, and The Arcade Fire, come on!

  9. What this trailer has just made quite clear to me is that I should not go watch this in a theater unless I want to hear small children saying “Mommy, why is that lady crying?”

  10. Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see

    • Good comment; hope you have a wonderful dinner tonight with all your intellectual friends, discussing adult things for adults.

    • No, a TV show about learning the spanish word for mountain is for children. A book and subsequent movie about learning there is always a place for you in this giant world with monsters and fear and terror and adventure, even though you’re one little person, that’s ageless and important.

  11. Besides being the best, these trailers just drive home the fact that Arcade Fire should be doing the score and not Karen O. Sorry YYYs fans, but this movie is basically funeral in movie form.

    • You can hear some of her score in the featurette for the movie, which you can find at apple.com/trailers, and at the beginning of this trailer after max stops humming, and, well, it’s pretty fucking awesome if you ask me.

      • I heard that, and figured that’s what it was. It does sound good. I just have to strong a connection with Wake Up I guess, and it overshadows it.

        • Yeah, but isn’t it driving you nuts the way they keep chopping up the song as the trailer goes along? The song has its pace, man! It’s gotta build!

          This comment brought to you by “Caring Too Much About Movie Trailers.”

    • to be fair, she’s working with Carter Burwell on the soundtrack. it’s not like Zero is gonna be blaring when the wild rumpus starts. i love both bands but i’m curious to see what she does with it.

  12. Also, can we hold Spike Jonze responsible for all the hearts that are going to explode in the theater during this movie?

  13. Johndoval  |   Posted on Aug 7th, 2009 +4

    I agree 100%. Well done.

  14. Gabe, you kind of seem like Professor Wild Things in this post… and I think that is a wonderful thing.

  15. I’m not crying.. It’s just been raining on my face.

  16. I haven’t yet left my kingdom (my kingdom = crappy job/tiny apt. in Europe), and though I’ve enjoyed gallivanting with these Maximonstres for the past 3 years, I’ve also recently been extremely homesick / nostalgic for what/whom I’ve left behind. I’ve manufactured the life I always longed for in this foreign country, yet I’m beginning to feel the country of my childhood, of my parents, is what’s really real and right and valid, and my current, manufactured reality is transitory and sort of delusive. That what I was fleeing from is the only thing real in my life. Basically, I just want to have fun at dinner (at home, with my mama).

    • i’m sure your dinner will still be hot when you get there.

    • Alexadrararara, first of all: “Space Cases”! Second of all: your comments are consistently great!

      Third of all, I think that “Where The Wild Things Are”, like “The Little Prince” before it, is one of those children’s books that I didn’t really understand until I was “much too old” for them. It’s like rewatching old Sesame Street and crying because you finally understand what was so captivating about it, how real and life changing it was, that it wasn’t just bright colors and funny characters.

      The best children’s literature/shows/movies/etc. brought me an unnameable comfort back then. As I get older, I see where they reenter my adult life, and they continue to bring me comfort, and not because they are tethered to memories of being safe at home with parents, nor for nostalgia of lost youth.

      It is because their themes continue to resonate and tuck me in at night. They were life lessons first introduced by these works, and then reinforced in experience, the first pieces of art that helped bring me into myself. I’ve always appreciated honesty, (I was one of those kids who’d say: “NO! That wouldn’t happen!”) and the beauty of WTWTA is that it’s NOT about how youth is always easy, but about how it’s hard, how it can be lonely, how sometimes, all we want is to be a little monster and still be told that we’re loved.

    • alexandrararara.
      How did you just type exactly what I’ve been thinking about the last year or so? You just made me miss my mom SO HARD.

      • It’s kinda comforting to know someone else out there can relate. (When I first commented I’d thought people would downvote me for being such a bummer.)

        • my mom died a couple of years ago, and while i logically know that and know there’s not really a ‘home’ to go to, it doesn’t change that eternal desire to feel safe, to go home and see my mom.

          sorry. sadtimesgum.

    • Awww. And then some more Awwww.
      I’m hope you’ll get your wish soon.

  17. Not gonna lie, every time I see the trailer I get tears.

  18. Aww, this is the sweetest thread ever! I’m going to print it out and tape it to my fridge, and read it whenever I’m lonely or sad or just need to be reminded that there are people in this world who get it, even on the internet.

    • BSteck  |   Posted on Aug 7th, 2009 +9

      I know, I needed this today. This thread makes me think of “warm fuzzies” my 1st grade teacher gave out to us in class many years ago.
      Didn’t think it was possible but I’m even more nostalgic than I was before!
      *hands neptuneflame a warm fuzzy*

  19. Gabe, there’s nothing “vague” about being sent to bed without supper!

    But also. I’m with you, and I just want to add that the reason I still love this book is that is so perfectly captures the struggle to reconcile my (our) conflicting desires for adventure/spontaneity and security/familiarity. And in the end they can’t be reconciled (except in the most superficial ways) and the book seems to understand that… there doesn’t seem to be an overt “there’s no place like home” moral at the end… Max goes home and reacquaints himself with how comforting it is and how much he needs for it to be there, but I don’t get the sense that he’s been conditioned or “tamed.” He’s still going to be an ornery sombitch, just a more self-aware one. I don’t know. It’s just the perfect book.

  20. “Times change, people change.” – American Pie.

  21. I almost didn’t read this post-jump, because I was like, no david blaine, i will not let you bring your signature snark/cynicism to this film (my mom cried during the trailer at hp6).
    But i did read it, and I think you’re right, and I feel better (except I’m still not convinced the real world is better, so, salutations from my kingdom, I guess)

  22. I just want to put my dick all over this movie.

    (…You guys know that saying, right?)

  23. Sure, these trailers are the Scientology ads of all trailers (it’s paperclips!), BUT I LIKE THEM! (the trailers not the ads)

  24. I’m sorry, not to rain on all the nostalgia and “good feelings” but is no one else getting really distracted by the james gandolfini all over this trailer? I never even watched the sopranos and I still cant stop picturing Tony welcoming this little kid into his monster mob.

    • I thought I was going to have that problem, but when his voice breaks slightly when he’s saying “It’s supposed to be a place where only what you want to happen can happen,” I melt.

  25. This might the most sincere, least snarky thread in VG history.
    BORING!!! (Just kidding, you guys. Nice to see some real human beings in the neck of the web.)

  26. There is absolutely no way that this movie will not be The Greatest. At least for me.
    Also, glad to know I’m not the only one who will be crying, right, right?!
    These trailers just continue to prove themselves by swelling and swelling to the point of creating something you can feel a part of.

  27. With no concern for votes- I’m glad to know that not everyone runs the hell away from their kingdom, never looks back and is glad to be away. Things beyond my control have taken me far from my home and I miss it everyday. Glad to find kinship here among the monsters. (single tear.)

  28. I’ve always loved this book but working in a children’s store has made me love it even more. When kids faces light up when they see this book and the stuffed animals it makes my day and gives me hope. I can’t wait for this movie!

  29. I don’t know, I think WTWTA is the answer to at least one thing: it comes out three weeks after Tucker Max’s movie from hell, and humanity desperately needs some positive karma to counter such negative karma. Any-whoo I’m prepared to love this movie.

  30. DAMN! All the good comments of sentiment and beauty have already been made!
    I guess I’ll just say that it gets dusty at my desk whenever I see the trailers for this film.
    They drop me right into the vague white warmth of my early years, when my point of view always had me looking up at things. Punching homemade pillows by my mom sitting on a rocking chairs in the sewing room. I’m a fucking MONSTER.

  31. kov  |   Posted on Aug 7th, 2009 0

    I hearts and flowers for these trailers like nothing else, but every time I see one the combination of adorable small child and Arcade Fire makes me want to start popping out babies.

  32. when i moved out of my house one of the few things i took was my stuffed animals (:() and i had a where the wild things are stuffed animal! so i just tore apart my attic, at 26, looking for this and didn’t find my wild thing but i DID find an american eagle shopping bag full of mouse-compromised beanie babies and also a puppy surprise! with a puppy in it!!!! nostalgia.

  33. I have to say that when I saw this thread title, I thought you were talking about Jeopardy. HARHARHAR. Alex Trebek.

  34. MakeMyHeartSing  |   Posted on Aug 8th, 2009 +3

    The moment I saw the monsters, memories I didn’t think I still had in my brain came back to me and I smiled in spite of myself and, almost, got weepy.

  35. I actually cried. Right here at work. I couldn’t even help it. This movie is going to remind me why life isn’t so obvious, and that humanity is great. I’d almost forgotten.

  36. is it just me or am I the only terrified that imaginary friends are going to be the new vampires after this movie is going to be released. Next thing you know we are going to have at least 5 new television shows based on the fact that the main character has an imagine friend. Call me cynical.

  37. A Face With A View  |   Posted on Aug 8th, 2009 +4

    The night Max wore his wolf suit and made mischief of one kind and another. His mother called him “WILD THING!” and Max said “I’LL EAT YOU UP!” so he was sent to bed without eating anything. That very night in Max’s room a forest grew and grew- and grew until his ceiling hung with vines and the walls became the world all around and an ocean tumbled by with a private boat for Max and he sailed off through night and day and in and out of weeks and almost over a year to where the wild things are. And when he came to the place where the wild things are they roared their terrible roars and gnashed their terrible teeth and rolled their terrible eyes and showed their terrible claws- till Max said “BE STILL!” and tamed them with a magic trick of staring into their yellow eyes without blinking once and they were frightened and called himthe most wild thing of all and made him king of all wild things. “And now,” cried Max, “let the wild rumpus start!” “Now stop!” Max said and sent the wild things off to bed without their supper. And Max the king of all wild things was lonely and wanted to be where someone loved him best of all. Then all around from far away across the world he smelled good things to eat so he gave up being king of where the wild things are. But the wild things cried, “Oh please don’t go- we’ll eat you up- we love you so!” And Max said, “No!” The wild things roared their terrible roars and gnashed their terrible teeth and rolled theur terrible eyes and showed their terrible claws but Max stepped into his private boat and waved good-bye and sailed back over a year and in and out of weeks and through a day and into the night of his very own room where he found his supper waiting for him- and it was still hot.

    lots n lots n lots of love

  38. Oh, man. Oh man oh man oh man
    I just watched this at 2:30 AM and it scared the hell out of me. Oh jeez
    I’m practically crying but it’s not for the reason the rest of you are.
    Oh man.

  39. This trailer doesn’t make me want to see the film as much as it makes me want to listen to the Arcade Fire for about a billion hours.

  40. This is a pretty good reading of the text, along with the pictures. I had never read the book when I was a kid, but the trailer looked good. Here ya go, monsters:


  41. This movie is awesome, if only because it’s trailer has turned all us cynical hipsters into teary eyed messes. Videogum’s heart has grown three sizes this day.

  42. Where the Wild Things Are was one of the first books I ever read, so this movie will have some sentimental value for me. In other words, it better not suck ass like the last Harry Potter book.



  44. *Goosebumps&Sniffles* i love the love on here. i’d all about lost hope for good films this year… can’t wait to see it.. not sure if i’ll cry yet..

    blow bubbles! let your inner child run rampant for a while.. or eat cookies :D

  45. this is one of my favorite things i’ve ever read by you, gabe.
    and kahdooz to everyone for being lovely and sweet.

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