Friday 18 December 2009


WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE by Spike Jonze and adapted from the best selling book by Maurice Sendak is a bit of a strange one as you might expect. It's got the heart and soul of an arthouse independent movie but no doubt the budget and restrictions of a popcorn blockbuster. It's a strange mix that pretty much works. It's not really a film for kids, more a film for grown ups about childhood. I enjoyed it but also felt a touch underwhelmed. I did however nod off about an hour in, though I put that down to coming in to a hot cinema from out of the biting cold, as I was enjoying it, or at least thought so. My attention/preparation went to shit straight away somewhat by firstly a couple of pig ignorant twats who decided not to join the long queue for tickets but just waltz straight to the window without a care in the world. My frustrations made worse by the fact I didn't say cock-all when inside I wanted to bash their heads together, i can only put this down to kids being around/being rather chilled out until then. This actually made us late and miss the 'coming soons' then as the film started some typical late comers (or maybe like us - made late by more divs at the ticket office) decided to sit directly in front of us, despite the fact there were seats aplenty about the place (I do hate that) and they were some overweight emo types necking away and dicking about with their phones! Again my lack of tolerance on this particular day amazed me. It was by no means pretty as they stunk to high heaven presumably of being unwashed, cheap food, brine and bad milk. To my horror when the lights came on at the end they were both stubbly hybrid bonafide he/she's, impossible to know which and did not look unlike the Wild Things themselves. Anyway I'm ranting! So back to the film it was different, I don't normally watch films of this ilk at the cinny, but felt this was worthy of giving it a go.

Max (Max Records) is a frustrated child, borderline loner and definitely anxious (or maybe just a young kid). After a spat with his sister and her friends involving snowballs and the destruction of his self-made igloo, the anger boils over at the dinner table whilst wearing a wolf costume over an argument about frozen sweetcorn, he bites his mum (Catherine Keener) and storms off out the house and ultimately into a boat where he's magically transported over day and night to the land where the wild things are. The wild things are truly great and a proper example of where CGI works mainly because it's not relied upon (unlike in my opinion this Avatar film which looks like an expensive cartoon to me) although crucially there is a mix of puppetry and performance before the CGI, which brings the artwork of the book to real life and actually look very genuine with their own imperfections. James Gandolfini is great as the voice of Carol, though in his angry stages he *is* Tony Soprano apart from the cuss words. It took years for this to make it as a feature film and even then this production took five years to complete with a host of problems. Overall the end product is a visually stunning film but let down by something I can't quite pinpoint, perhaps the fact that the fantasy and real world's are ultimately similar or maybe something to do with the stop/start 5 years of production or stretching a ten minute story into feature length. I'm not sure? - But it's certainly different, has some great moments and the appreciation may or may not grow with repeated viewings.

Also out this month is previously mentioned The Girlfriend Experience a return to the independent circuit for Steven Soderbergh starring a fave of ours bongo star-cum-serious actor Sasha Grey as a high end call girl. That is if you can find it on anywhere.

We like Sasha Grey we do, and despite her chosen profession she's not a stereotypical coked up, jumped up pornstar with nothing but erm, you know what between her ears, (and eyes and chin) check out her top 5 films as seen/nabbed from FHM magazine. A woman after our own hearts.

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