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Movie Review

Where the Wild Things Are a.k.a. “Where the Wild Things Are: The IMAX Experience,” “Donde viven los monstruos,” “Arkadasim Canavar,” “Hassut hurjat hirviöt,” “Max en de maximonsters,” “Max et les maximonstres,” “Nel paese delle creature selvagge,” “Onde Vivem os Monstros,” “Sti hora ton magikon plasmaton,” “Till vildingarnas land,” “Wo die wilden Kerle wohnen”

MPAA Rating: PG for mild thematic elements, some adventure action and brief language.

Reviewed by: Patty Moliterno

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Primary Audience:
Teens, Adults
Family, Fantasy, Adventure, Drama
1 hr. 34 min.
Year of Release:
USA Release:
October 16, 2009 (wide—3,500+ theaters)
DVD: March 2, 2010
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Kid Explorers
Adventures in the rainforest! Learn about the Creator of the universe by exploring His marvelous creation. Fun for the whole family with games, activities, stories, answers to children’s questions, color pages, and more! One of the Web’s first and most popular Christian Web sites for children. Nonprofit, evangelical, nondenominational.
Featuring: Forest Whitaker, Catherine Keener, Catherine O'Hara, Mark Ruffalo, Max Records, Pepita Emmerichs, Max Pfeifer, Madeleine Greaves, Joshua Jay, Ryan Corr, Steve Mouzakis, James Gandolfini, Paul Dano, Michael Berry Jr., Chris Cooper, Lauren Ambrose
Director: Spike Jonze
Producer: Warner Bros. Pictures, Legendary Pictures, Village Roadshow Pictures, Playtone, Wild Things Productions, Bruce Berman, John B. Carls, Gary Goetzman, Tom Hanks, Jon Jashni, Vincent Landay, Scott Mednick, Maurice Sendak, Thomas Tull
Distributor: Warner Bros. Pictures

“There’s one in all of us.”

“Where the Wild Things Are” is based on a beloved picture book by Maurice Sendak. This screen adaptation is directed by Spike Jonze and Dave Eggers. Max (played by Max Records) is a 9 year old boy who definitely feels neglected. Max builds a snow fort and wants his older sister to play with him, but she is too busy on the phone or with her friends. He gets into a snowball fight with his sister and her friends, but his fort is crushed by them. They don’t even realize how they have hurt Max, as he stands there crying, and his sister just leaves.

His parent’s are divorced, and his mom (Catherine Keener) works late. She comes home, and tries to spend a little time with Max, but she, too, is busy with projects and a boyfriend. Outside of school, Max has no one. He leads a lonely existence. One night, unable to contain himself any longer, Max fights with his mom and runs away. He sails off to an island and meets the Wild Things. Max becomes their king and finds the Wild Things are just like the people back home.

OBJECTIONABLE CONTENT: First, I need to say that this movie is dark and disturbing in many parts. The music, mood and lighting all contribute to the dark feel of this movie.

VIOLENCE: There is plenty of violence. Max chases the dog. He has a snowball fight and destroys his sister’s room. He bites his mom. There is a scary storm while Max is sailing, and the boat capsizes. When Max first sees the Wild Things, it is at night, and there is a fire; one of the Wild Things is destroying and breaking things. This scene is dark and violent. The monsters threaten to eat Max. There are dirt ball fights, hitting with sticks, and one Wild Thing gets his wing ripped off. He is later seen with a stick for a wing. A raccoon is thrown like a ball during a game.

LANGUAGE: One d-mn and h-ll. One character says “G-d, you’re selfish,” and a couple of other instances where God’s name is taken in vain. Max and Carol both say, “I’ll eat you up.” Max tells his mom, “I hate you.”

OTHER OBJECTIONABLE CONTENT: Max’s mom kisses her boyfriend, and they drink wine. His teacher is talking about the solar system and the sun dying out and the solar system being destroyed in a number of ways—war, global warming, etc. Max lies to the monsters about being a king. Max later tells Carol (James Gandolfini), “The sun is going to die.” KW tells Max to “crawl inside my mouth” to hide. Inside KW there is a live raccoon. When Max needs to come out, KW pulls him out, and he is covered with slime.

POSITIVE CONTENT: Max shows remorse when he destroys his sister’s room and helps his mom to clean it up. Max and the Wild Things care for one another and work together to build a fort.

The Wild Things all represent Max and people in his life. The feelings of a lonely little boy are captured in the film, and I believe that helps children to feel less alone if they know that those feelings are common among everyone. KW has 2 friends, Bob and Terry. When she brings them around, everyone welcomes them. Carol feels isolated and doesn’t understand “the new kids.” Life is very much like that. In group situations, it is easy to feel left out, and kids and adults often do not do a very good job making everyone feel welcome.

If you watch the film, watch for how Max is working out his feelings of isolation, being left out, not feeling loved, and aggression. You can definitely use these as talking points with your children. These are also important things to remember as adults—when was the last time you felt like you didn’t belong or nobody listened to you?

The Wild Things definitely showed both good and bad emotions. Romans 12:15-18 says,

“Be happy with people who are happy. Cry with people who cry. Agree with one another. Do not be proud, but be friends with anybody. Do not think you are wiser than you are. When people do wrong things to you, do not do wrong things to them also. But try to do good things for all people. As much as you can, live in peace with everyone.”

God calls us to be a light to people in a dark, lonely world. Children are never too young to learn to look outside of themselves. By teaching your children to rejoice and cry with others, you teach them empathy. Compassion for others takes the focus off of self.

I took my family to see this movie (ages 19-5), and, although I love the book, I did not love the movie. There are aspects of the movie that I like, but I definitely cannot recommend this movie for kids under 7-8. I don’t think young girls will get this movie at all, and there are too many disturbing images for younger children. Also, there are too many slow moving dialogue scenes to hold the interest of small children.

My 19 year old son liked the movie and “got it;” my 16 year old daughter didn’t. I asked some young adults (both male and female) about the movie, and they loved it. My overall recommendation is that this movie will appeal to older children and young adults.

Violence: Moderate / Profanity: Mild / Sex/Nudity: Minor

Viewer CommentsSend your comments
Comments below:
Positive—“Where The Wild Things Are” is unlike any movie I have ever seen. Spike Jones successfully portrays an entire film from the viewpoint, logic, and, heightened view of emotions of a 9 year old. The movie gives the audience to feel once again the grandeur of being a child. Everything in the movie is larger than life.

The movie itself is very dark. The subtext dealing with some very real issues that families deal with, and how those issues are viewed by a young child. The fact is that life is not always happy. As one of the monster’s says to Max “being a family is hard.”

This film portrays this truth by the characters interactions and the way they handle situations. The monster’s reason on the level of a nine year old, which works all too well for the movie. With a very dark, and what some would consider depressing tone, heed the PG warning. But bear this in mind, the issues dealt with in this movie are ones that every family/person has to deal with in their life.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 4½
—Daniel Robison, age 21 (USA)
Positive—My teen-aged son and I went to view this movie because the book has been a favorite in both our childhoods. He loved it! I did, too.

The movie is dark in places, and I do not think children under 10 should see it, not only might it scare them and because the themes are mature. I must say, some of the “objectionable content” is really not objectionable to me, though, having a glass of wine with dinner and kissing my boyfriend is not unbiblical, nor did it come off that way in the movie. But, that’s my view.

As far as RW hiding Max in her, that is pure attachment theory. She was “his mom” in the monster part of the movie—protecting him (and the raccoon) just as Max’s mother did when she knew he was troubled. I thought it was beautiful and well done… for a beast and a kid. If you do take teens or children, please take time to debrief after viewing. There is much to discuss here. It was unbelievably beautiful, creative, and intelligent. I was pleasantly surprised.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 4½
—Peg, age 45 (Canada)
Positive—This is one of the best, most beautiful films of 2009! Come Oscar season, I hope this film becomes one of the leading contenders. Spike Jonze is a genius. Like all of the great directors of the world, he has a style that is uniquely his own, and WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE is a textbook example of this.

It’s THE most original “family” film that I have ever seen. I have never seen anything quite like it. More for adults than for children, this film has an emotional complexity that weaves itself beautifully into the non-linear narrative. It is about childhood, what it is like to be misunderstood, to be a “wild thing,” and the need to be loved. It’s a universal story that we can all relate to.

Max Records delivers a beautifully understated performance, and the limited use of CGI to bring the characters to life adds a new dimension to the atmosphere of the film. It makes the characters a bit more tangible on an emotional level, and as a result, tn’the film evolves into a richly textured character study. These wild things have many, many layers. I loved them all. Everything about the film is perfect. The direction, the acting, the music, it all adds up to a magical experience that no one should miss. Another thing should be noted: this film does not sell out. It doesn’t water it’s harder themes down for children.

It has very dark moments, and if you are a discriminating parent, you may want to screen this film before you take your kids. However, this is not a bad thing. It’s what gives the film it’s guts. The fact that it doesn’t lower itself to typical Hollywood family film standards is amazing to me! It adds to it’s charm. It’s more an indie film than a Hollywood popcorn flick. Excellent! I loved it, and I will see it again!
My Ratings: Moral rating: Good / Moviemaking quality: 5
—Steven Adam Renkovish, age 27 (USA)
Positive—In the real world, Max loves to play and pretend, but he is dealing with “big kids” in the neighborhood and his mom’s dating someone. His mom is played by, well, I think it must be his mom, cause she looked so average and “un-Hollywoodish”… showed such love for Max. As someone who remembers how hard it was to accept when my divorced mom started dating, I could relate well to Max’s feelings of frustration. If anyone thinks a child is just going to smile and say “yes mam” as they watch a new person enter their family…. Well, it doesn’t usually go that smoothly. I didn’t bite my mom, but I was a girl…and Max is not…and it’s a movie. In the world of “wild things” Max learns to have confidence. He leads them in building, exploring. He “lights up” when he sees they follow his commands.

They dance and run to music, they build a huge home, have a dirt clod war. At first this world appears perfect but then he starts to hear friction between the creatures. Their problems start to parallel his own @ home. As one of them teaches the others to accept, etc. Max begins to think of his family and I think he starts missing them. There are scary scenes, I think 12 and up… but isn’t that what PG means? Though the book may attract 7-8 yr olds, this is a PG movie. We can tell kids to treat their brother right, but seeing what Max’s sis does, might help someone realize they need to work on getting along. The dirt-clod war was fought as a way to get out their frustrations, but when someone got hurt, they learned something… Yes, the main creature did get mad when he realized Max wasn’t a king, and wanted to eat him (cause he’s a monster), but he changed and realized he cared for Max. I think kids and pre-teens can learn a lot from watching this movie. My 25 yr old son and I loved it.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 5
—Ann, age 50 (USA)
Positive—I have read Maurice Sendak’s book and just saw the film. While not definitely in tandem with the book itself, it was a good movie. It was refreshing to see a story from the viewpoint of a 9 year old boy with a vivid imagination and in need of a friend or two. My only problem was the violence in the film. Without it, it would’ve been a great children’s movie. My hats off to Spike Jonze for putting this all together.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 4
—Shannon H., age 28 (USA)
Positive—I’m not sure why some people have the idea that “too deep for kids” equals “bad movie,” which is the gist I get from most of the reviews here. I’m actually shocked at the amount of negativity I see here. No, this is not a kid’s movie, and it shouldn’t have been advertised as such. But that doesn’t change the fact that it is in fact a very well done movie. The visuals are fantastic, and it has some very thought provoking themes. Max had all of these deep issues that each of the Wild Things represented, and they enabled him to better understand his own issues and make the right choices to work through them. I found it to be a fantastic movie and would not hesitate to recommend it for teens and up.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 4
—Dustin, age 22 (USA)
Positive—I am confused by some of the negative comments made by commenters who claim to have read the book, let alone claim to be fans of it. One criticizes the portrayal of Max as disrespectful. Another professes a failed expectation for a story that is happy and bright. The Max of the book is disrespectful, and the story line of the book does not suggest the happy and bright picture of many conventional children stories. This does strike me as a difficult movie to market. On the surface, a story of a young boy escaping into an imaginary world stuffed with farcical monsters, this movie seems to have children (and not adults) as its target audience.

However, the mature motifs and vivid expressionism centering on the wounded psychology of a child who is wrestling with feelings of isolation and the fear of abandonment call for an adult audience. I enjoyed the movie and feel that the adaptation does not pervert the book.

The narrative and imagery of the movie are not Biblical, but neither was the book’s. However, the movie adaptation invites Biblical conversation, especially on the subject of the monsters' desire for a King. In our world of broken families, Max’s problems are not so fantasy. The movie does not make light of these. And it does not offer a trite solution. Nor should it. And I believer that how a viewer responds to the movie says more about the viewer than about the movie-in-itself.

Christ is King. Christ is the Light. And this is a messed up world just as the movie depicts. And as Christians we are called to love one another unconditionally.

This leads me to a final thought on another negative comment: “The only message we got from this movie is that if you want to be a hooligan and bite your mother, just run away from home; she will hug you when you return, and you won’t even have to apologize!” My response: “And he [the prodigal son] arose and came to his father. But when he was still a great way off, his father saw him and had compassion, and ran and fell on his neck and kissed him.” Luke 15:20 The son’s apology in Jesus’s account came after the father’s expression of unconditional love. That’s the key. It’s not humankind’s apology that compelled Christ to choose the cross. It was love.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 4½
—Anthony M. Caputi, age 33 (USA)
Positive—I felt this movie portrayed many human themes beautifully (rejection, loneliness, jealousy, war, and love). My soul was stirred. In that regard I have to ask myself, why? It’s usually because I am reminded of great spiritual truths. The monsters have spent their whole lives searching for a real king. That is—something much greater than themselves. When Max comes along, they place their faith in him, and it turns out that he is not the king or idol they expect (sound familiar?). But, it turns out that he was the best king of all. In Max they found that thing which is much greater than themselves and that is LOVE.

By the monsters expressions and behaviors to each other and Max as he leaves, it is clear they finally get it. It is clear Max’s mother gets it as we see her adoring him late into the night as he eats his dinner. And it is clear Max gets it as he gazes intently at his mother after she falls asleep. By God’s grace I have come to understand that such love come from God and that God is Love. I hope you get it too.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Excellent! / Moviemaking quality: 5
—Matt, age 49 (USA)
Neutral—…there was a sh*t and an a**hole during the part where they are talking about building a fort. He yells the words out. I’m glad I was the only one watching it. I’m sick of Hollywood injecting this stuff in movies meant for kids. KEEP IT OUT, or we’re quitting watching movies altogether. Why can’t they respect our right to keep our kids clean?
My Ratings: Moral rating: Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 3
—Theresa, age 33 (USA)
Editor’s Note: Our volunteer reviewer did not hear the above mentioned vulgar words, nor does ScreenIt confirm their use. So, we assume that either there is a misunderstanding, or the words are difficult to hear.
Negative—My husband and son are huge Sendak fans with Where the Wild Things Are being their favorite book. Admittedly I’m less of a fan. We saw the movie today, and my 8 year old asked repeatedly to leave the theater—a first. The story was frankly depressing and boring. I suppose the visuals were interesting, but IMHO certainly nothing special much less spectacular.

From a Christian perspective the movie is utterly dismal. I can’t recall any swearing, etc., but that doesn’t make the movie good by any means. Max’s behavior is abhorrent. He’s clearly a kid with some serious problems—likely due to his parent’s divorce and his Mom dating again. He’s disrespectful—to the point of biting his Mother. His sister’s behavior is equally unkind and insensitive. When Max is reduced to tears by her teenage friends she just shrugs and leaves. As dismal as this family situation may be it pales in comparison to that of the monsters. What a sad, depressing, lonely tale. Carol has serious anger management issues—in one rage he rips off his friend’s arm.

I could go on about this, but the bottom line is save your money. Take your kids to see “Toy Story” 1 & 2 or “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs” instead. What a shame for what could have been such a great film.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 2½
—Chryste, age 45 (USA)
Negative—We took our kids to see this movie tonight. I would not recommend it. It is dark with very few points of laughter. While the book was a story built around a boy who creates a fantasy land, the movie feels more like the story of an adult who had a really bad childhood. The Monsters are dark, depressing, and violent.

In addition, at one point when Max says he is not a king, a viking or anything like that and that he is just “Max,” the monster says, “and that isn’t very much is it.” How uplifting is that?

We wanted to get up and leave several times but thought it might be worse to leave or things might bet better. (and we have left movies before). Didn’t happen. Rather than focus on the moral (which I am still trying to figure out myself), at the end I asked about what their favorite monster was vs. dwell on the dismal plot, violent plot.

One more reason to screen or read reviews from sites like this BEFORE taking the kids. We have learned our lesson…again. In the end, I do feel there are some good discussion points for older kids but not much more than the special effects for younger kids. I would not recommend this film because of its dark and dreary content. My wife and discussed the fact that there were few things of the “Spirit,” to latch onto. Save your money.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 2
—Mike, age 46 (USA)
Negative—My family grew up enjoying the Maurice Sendak book that the movie was based on and was expecting (from the trailers as well) that this would be a happy, bright wonderful children’s movie. It was not.

There were only a few instances of swearing, but anger was a predominate theme in this movie. One of the first scenes where you see the monsters one of them is tearing their village apart, and all are about to eat Max until he tells them he is a “king.” The music played during the especially angry parts of the movie did not help anything.

The plot of the story wasn’t easy enough for young children to understand; all the relationship problems were complicated and very adult. In the end of the movie nothing was verbally resolved; the adults understood the resolve in the actions, but the children in the audience were most likely confused.

There was a couple behind my family who had two little children around the ages of say maybe 4 and 6 or younger. They were both on their parents laps about 15 minutes into the movie and I heard the one behind me crying a couple of times and say to his mommy, “When is this movie going to be over?”

This movie is definitely not for young children. My family wasted our money on this disappointing movie, don’t waste your money.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 3½
—Kendle, age 19 (USA)
Negative—“Where the Wild Things Are” is one of those movies which is full of sound and fury, but otherwise doesn’t seem to make any sense. The premise of the film concerns an emotionally troubled child who lives with his divorced mother and his teenage sister. Max is lonely, insecure, aggressive, and escapist. He likes to hide in blanket forts, in snow igloos, and other enclosures. He likes to terrorize his dog, to wear animal pajamas, to roar like a lion, and to attack his sister’s guy friends with snowballs. Max kicks fences, tears things, and when he isn’t acting out his frustration, he is asking for attention.

Max is a mess. He resents the attention his mother is giving to her date and ends up biting her so hard on the shoulder that she is both hurt and surprised by his intention to cause her harm. He runs away from home, goes out to sea, and sails to an island where certain wild things live. The wild things are extremely powerful and destructive, although they never hurt Max physically. He tries to be their “king” and to rule them, but he is unsuccessful and ends up making the monster family even more dysfunctional then it was before. Max, when acting emotionally, is a real monster who hurts even other monsters. Metaphorically speaking, the monsters are emotions.

FREUD—The viewer at this point begins to see the connection between emotions and disorder. Max is a bundle of raging desires. His mother yells at him that he’s “out of control” just as Max yells at one of the wild things that it’s “out of control.” The problem is that there is nothing to ameliorate the desires. Max’s desires, his “wild things,” reside in the id which, according to Freudian psychology, is the child-like part of the unconscious. The id is driven by the “pleasure principle” which seeks to gratify all of its desires every moment. Max’s life is an unbounded pursuit of pleasure, of avoidance, of repression, of denial, of regression. But even when he’s running away from home and from his mother, he gets pleasure from the act. The divorced father (the superego) is not there to keep Max (the id) in place. The mediating influence of the mother (the ego) is insufficient to control Max. Where the “wild things are” is where Max is: in the id, the island in the unconscious of the sea.

In its plot, the book (1963) is very similar to The Lord of the Flies (1954). Both works feature absent father figures (the superegos), both have ineffective mother figures acting as egos (Ralph in the novel), both feature the wild desires (id) of boyhood, and both take place on an island (the unconscious). In Golding’s novel, order is restored when the adult men find the boys. However, in this movie, Max returns to a home without a father. In other words, from a Freudian perspective, this story cannot end well. There is no superego to control the id (the child) and to protect the ego (the mother). Max is having Oedipal conflicts (resenting the boyfriend) which express themselves in aggression toward his mother. This archetypal drama is also acted out by a wild thing who creates breast-shaped, miniature mountains and then destroys them. The giant womb the wild things create also becomes unsafe for Max. Ultimately, the most powerful wild thing threatens to “eat” (consume) Max, and Max has to escape the dangerous realm of the id (unbridled emotions) and return to the sane realm of the ego: home and mom.

In the creepy ending, Max smiles at the sleeping face of his mother. The smile might be affectionate, but my take is that it’s mischievous, because the viewer knows the mother cannot control Max who has already bitten her once. Max didn’t apologize for biting her, and the expectation is that Max will go on being a monster, feeding off the security the ego provides. The movie ends with him in his monster pajamas, eating and waiting for her to awaken.

Since there has been no repentance expressed by Max, the viewer expects that the cycle of irrational and unfettered behavior will resume all over again. The irony is that “Where the Wild Things Are” is a cuddly monster movie for children and a psychological horror film for adults in the tradition of “The Bad Seed” (1956), another Freudian-themed film. Every parent should see it and immediately go home and spank their child on principle (metaphorically speaking). The movie is a perfect illustration of how liberal child-raising (reasoning with emotions) causes a child to become frustrated, aggressive, and demanding because the child cannot control its own emotions. When the parent tries to talk the child into controlling its own emotions, this only exasperates the child because it sees the parent as withholding that which would make the child happy.

When parents help children to control their emotions through discipline, children acquire peace in the structured home life that the discipline provides. They have higher self-esteem; they are less likely to have anger issues; they develop a balanced personality that they can “drive” rather than be driven by. Only when children are given structure can they find rest from the wild thing that is in them. As a form of entertainment, I don’t recommend the movie only because it’s an emotional onslaught with no narrative depth. As an object lesson in how not to raise children, it’s invaluable.
—Michael Karounos (USA)
Negative—As far as production value is concerned, this film is phenomenal. Everything from the visual effects to the cinematography is well done. The animatronics are very believable. The film is colorful and the scenes and locations often seem to reflect paintings; perhaps they are meant to emulate Sendak’s book?

The music probably fits the “indy” genre very well. It really sets the tone of the movie, and it is possible that I will pick the soundtrack up; I didn’t hear any swear words in the lyrics. The music is great. As far as good goes for this film, that is all I have to say.

I think this is the kind of movie that film critics are really going to love, as it is very “artsy” and psychoanalytical in certain ways. My main issues with the film are as follows: Just from a story point of view, I was very confused as to what it exactly was about. I understood that the monsters represented the child’s psyche (aspects of his own personality mixed with those of the people around him) and that the child had a very disturbing anger issue which he expressed through acts of violence and rage. But so much of what actually went on in the movie was confusing.

It was even more confusing because of the second issue I had a problem with: the conflict/resolution in the film. It is obvious in the movie that the child had deep emotional problems and that he was on the island because of these issues, sort of “battling with himself,” or, perhaps “learning to cope” in some way. But the problem never feels like it is properly resolved.

The ultimate message of the movie (which is really hard to pin-down; it seems very postmodern to me) as far as I could gather it was: “life is hard and it gets harder and all you can do is deal with it.” At one point in the movie, one of the monsters is depressed because of his own feelings of inadequacy in relation to the false promises that the child made about being a “king.” The child said he would fix the problems of the monsters, and it was later discovered that he was just an average child with no powers. This causes one of the monsters to ask if there truly is a king who could give them any sort of hope, and he seems to conclude that there is not. This goes along with the child’s teacher, who, earlier in the movie, posits that one day the sun will burn out and consume the solar system, but that humans will likely have eradicated themselves long before such an event takes place.

I am bold enough to say that the depressed monster and the fatalistic teacher seem to not-so-subtly represent doubts about Christianity (or possibly any sort of supernatural/theistic belief.) The answer to the monster’s query is that there is no king who will protect, provide for and rescue him. He is apparently doomed to live a hopeless existence, in the same way that the world is apparently doomed to be consumed by the sun one day.

A friend who I watched the movie with specifically mentioned the incident about the monster and king, and he said, “When I saw that scene, I wanted to say to the monster: there IS a King who will be there for you! His name is Jesus!”

In a lot of ways, this movie seems to be about hopelessness and about simply dealing with hopelessness in a way that leaves out the supernatural. The child tells a story early in the film about a vampire who loses all of his teeth and is forsaken by his vampire friends because of it; this seems to represent how the child views himself.

Dave Eggers, who co-wrote the screenplay for this film, also wrote “What is the What?” which was the story of Valentino Achak Deng, one of the “Lost Boys” of Sudan. Deng himself struggled with the problem of evil related to the incredible suffering he witnessed and endured during the civil war in Sudan. While the book does not dwell on the issue all that much, it unashamedly questions God’s role in the evil that took place in Sudan. Was it God who brought the evil, or was it God who stood by and watched the evil? Is there even a God, if He would allow such terrible things to happen? It seems like Eggers may have translated some of that thinking into the screenplay for this film.

It is very unclear what the child was supposed to have learned from his experience, as there is no tangible point where it is made evident that he learned anything at all. I kept waiting for a moment where the boy would realize the error of his ways, the “Eureka” moment where he would be reconciled with the monsters for being dishonest with them and return home to his mother to apologize for hurting her. I waited, but it never came. If it did come, there was nothing overt about it.

In the book, the child chooses to return home to his mother because he realizes that she is more important than the Wild Things. In the movie, he seems to leave the island depressed, realizing that he has hurt the Wild Things by lying to them about being a king with special powers. He seems to return home because he has to, rather than because he misses and loves his mother. (Admittedly, he runs home to see her, but the reason he leaves the island in the first place seems to be related to what I wrote above, as far as I could tell.) From a philosophical/moral perspective, what is so objectionable about this film is the utter senses of hopelessness and fatalism that are present throughout.

The film seems to have underlying atheistic assumptions: there is no one looking out for us; there is no one who is going to help us. There is no “king” with power to protect us; if we live long enough to see the sun die out, we will die with it. The monsters put their faith in the child, only to be shattered when they find out he is a fraud. Their hope was an illusion; hope is a placebo. Aside from that, the monsters themselves, while functioning as comic relief at certain points, were actually quite frightening. And I do want to say at this point to those of you who are parents: this is NOT a kids' movie! It is very much an adult movie with adult themes.

Do not let its PG rating and the fact that it is based on a children’s book fool you. What was so scary about the monsters (and they were; there were children crying in the theater) was not that they had horns and sharp teeth and massive bodies. It was that they were personifications of the child’s mind, and thus were incredibly immature and flippant with their dangerous strength and ferocity. It was like the movie “The Last King of Scotland,” where Nicholas Garrigon says to Immi Amman, who calls himself a king, “No, you’re a child. And that’s why your so ****ing scary.” Essentially, the monsters were the same way.

I felt the same sense of dread watching this film as I did while watching “The Last King of Scotland;” there was a constant fear that one of the beasts would snap and rip the child to shreds. Numerous times throughout the movie, several of the monsters threatened to eat the child. When the child first arrives, one of the monsters removes the child’s (who is made king) crown and scepter from a pile of smoldering human bones. At the end of the movie, it is revealed that he is the only king that the monsters hadn’t eaten, and thus the source of the bones, while hinted at earlier, are confirmed. There is a constant sense of tension in the film that the child is surrounded by a pack of immature and very dangerous creatures.

Like the child himself, there is a constant teetering between a sense of happiness and a near explosion of rage, especially with the “main” monster who seems to most clearly personify the boy, voiced by James Gandolfini. It is hinted at more than once that if the child says or does the wrong thing, he will be killed. The monsters seemed to personify very visceral and explosive emotions that made the child himself violent and angry at times. It was honestly disturbing to watch the beginning of this movie.

The child is portrayed very well and very realistically; the sad thing is, I think there are a lot of kids like that today. I used to be one of them, so seeing it on the big screen really hit home for me. I think of how angry and upset and explosive that I used to be when I was younger, and it makes me glad for the grace of Jesus Christ, who changed my heart and made me a new person.

I am not convinced that a so-called “placebo” of faith could be responsible for so radical a change. The “king' represents nothing more than shattered faith in this film. I think one of the main messages of this film is that we have to fix ourselves, because no one else is going to do it. While I am all for personal responsibility and self-reflection, I am very much convinced that there is a King who can change our hearts and lives. We will not burn ourselves away with blood lust or global warming, for as the last chapters of scripture tells us: the end will come on His terms, not ours.

For its production value, I think this is a great film.

Morally, it can be lighthearted at times, but this is because of the immaturity of the 9-year-old protagonist whom the monsters represent. In reality, the creatures personify the very skewed psyche of a troubled and disturbed child who expresses his deep emotional hurt and feelings of loneliness and betrayal physically and violently. The tone of the film is downright dark at times, expressing hopelessness, fatalism and explosive rage.

Philosophically, this movie could very well stir some deep discussions, but keep in mind that the themes are very difficult and very adult.

As a final warning: please do NOT take small children to see this film. You will regret it.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 4
—Daniel, age 24 (USA)
Negative—My family and I went to see this movie Saturday morning. After about 30 min., we left and got our money back. I admit I have never read the book, so I had no deep desire to watch it. The movie was interesting at the beginning but after a while I couldn’t help but feel like I was watching an “Emo” movie. Not my thing. It also seemed like a take on HR Puffenstuff. When Max first met the wild things and they wanted to eat, that whole scene seemed to have a demonic feel to it. Not too much longer after that we left.

My 10 and 8 yr old girls did not like the movie and were scared. My wife felt it was just a creepy movie. I just felt there were other movies out there that were more uplifting and entertaining that I would rather be watching than a downer like this one.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 3½
—Roy, age 32 (USA)
Negative—I was looking forward to what I thought would be a cute, warm fuzzy movie. This movie does not fit that bill at all. I would therefore say that the trailers were very misleading. The main character was a very unhappy and depressing young boy—who acts out in a disrespectful manner, then takes off in the night and finds an island with “wild things” that have the same characteristics he does. It’s a downer.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 3
—Sheryl, age 55 (USA)
Negative—I have searched for the right words to adequately describe my displeasure with this film and I found them on this site. Please read Daniel’s, age 24, review. It is, by far, the best analytical description that I have found based on my faith. What great insight! Thank you Daniel! Based on that, I would not recommend this movie to anyone.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Very Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 4
—Debby, age 36 (USA)
Negative—I took my 9 year old son to this movie and may I say, don’t make the same mistake. I have never walked out of a movie before but I did today. After my son had said several times, “I don’t like this.” in a scared, strange voice. I told him we didn’t have to stay. We tried, hoping it would improve but we left after an hour and a half. It was just very strange and I feel it was to deep for children. I was very disappointed in it compared to the book. OK the boy had issues at home and went to his imaginary land but then his imaginary friends had major anger issues and wow… I can understand the deeper issues and how they relate to his real life but… Way too deep for my child. A real disappointment. I would not waste my time and money!
My Ratings: Moral rating: Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 4
—Tasha Weatherington, age 43 (USA)
Negative—I saw this movie with three generations of Christians, ranging in age from 6 to 62, and not one of us enjoyed the movie—at all! The opening act, set in the boy’s home and neighbourhood has a low-budget, home movie look; wherein the boy over-reacts to everything. Although the Wild Things he meets in his fantasy world probably represent his peers, they are voiced by adults, making their petty, whiny and argumentative character all the more annoying. The only message we got from this movie is that if you want to be a hooligan and bite your mother, just run away from home; she will hug you when you return, and you won’t even have to apologize!
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 1½
—Brian Schacht, age 62 (Canada)
Negative—I read the reviews on this site and decided to take a chance on getting this film for viewing on our family movie night. Within the first 15 minutes of the movie our children 13, 11 and 5 were all asking what was wrong with the little boy, and I think we were all kind of uncomfortable watching the immature temper tantrums, meltdowns and “it’s okay for me to do it to you, but not okay for you to do it back to me, so now I’m going to pout and throw a huge destructive tantrum” scenarios get played out.

After watching the entire movie, my summation was “Little selfish boy throws huge temper tantrums, likes destroying things and when he doesn’t get what he wants, he bites those in charge and runs away. Then he comes back and gets rewarded for all of this with a big piece of chocolate cake”.

The characters were pretty well done and looked realistic at several points, at others though our children commented at how “fake” they looked too, so I think it was mixed. I asked and I don’t think any of us really enjoyed or liked the movie at all. Everyone just said it was “weird” and seemed kind of disturbed by things in it.

Overall, I really didn’t have anything very positive to talk to our kids about after this movie. It really just felt like a 1½ hour lesson on how “NOT” to act and how “NOT” to be. I think they have enough examples of that in their day to day interactions at school and just really didn’t see very much that was redeeming about this movie. I still have absolutely no idea why this book is such a “classic” (even after reading it a few times) and can’t see any reason why this movie would be either unfortunately.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 3½
—Mike, age 41 (USA)
Negative—Do not take young children to see this movie. It was absolutely horrid. I took my 8 yr old daughter; both of us being very eager to see this film that is being hailed as a “modern masterpiece” and an “instant classic.” We sat there stunned as this wonderful book was totally gutted and left hanging to dry. Nothing like the book at all. All the monsters were constantly arguing and mad at each other, everybody seemed like they were manic-depressive, running around feeling guilty, depressed, angry, sad, etc.

The entire spectrum of negative emotions was thoroughly explored in this movie. I felt manipulated… It felt like some strange government psy-op, designed to bring out the worst in people. There were hardly any happy moments throughout the entire movie; all the characters (both human and non-human) moped about sadly throughout the film; crying, wallowing in self-pity, anguish, depression, and self-inflicted psychological punishment. Several small children were crying in the theater because it was so sad and negative, I’m not kidding.

I am so angry at being deceived. The ads for this film portray it as a positive, magical journey, when it was just the opposite. All it is is a flaming exercise in negativity and self-indulgent wallowing. The movie is jam-packed with subliminal messages and suggestions, all designed to make you feel bad about yourself and others. This one will make you feel awful inside for several hours after you leave the theater. No redeeming qualities whatsoever. Nothing but a big shameful sad-fest. I wish I could get my money back. No, I wish I could go back in time and choose never to see it.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 3½
—Lara, age 40 (Canada)
Negative—As far as the art of film making goes in translating a book to the big screen the director of this film needs to attend film school before he attempts any more films! The overall mood of the film was gloomy and dismal at best!

This film in the practical sense of how it played out, was terrible! As the story progresses, we have an understanding that the boy must have been on this island at least a few weeks. So, how did he survive when their was clearly no source of drinking water (he never drank) or any source of food (he never ate) Also, I really would have liked to have known where these creatures came from and how long they had been around. Where were their offspring, their elderly? They had no way to survive on the island. No food! No water (unless they drank from the ocean) and no source of any energy generation!

I thought it was rather idiotic that the boy wore his animal pajamas the whole time and yet at the end of the film, they did not look any dirtier than when he first arrived! When he does go back, apparently no one bothered to look for the kid. No police were out, no indication that he was reported missing. His mother halfheartedly welcomes him home with no questions to ask of where he had been all this time.

This film, mostly consisting of dry dialogue, was boring and a waste of money to make! I feel sorry for the parents who paid full ticket price to let their kids see this looser of a film! The only redeeming or entertaining element of this film, were the creatures (muppets) in how they looked. If done correctly, it could be a good film, this interpretation was not!
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: ½
—Robert, age 44 (USA)
Negative—I thought this movie was depressing. It constantly showed the depressing dysfunction that families have. It could have been so much better focused on the fantasy side and imagination of a child but it was mostly depressing with a few good laughs. Could have gone my whole life without seeing it. It was sad to see how lost, lonely and confused this kid was. Boring and depressing. You thought he was going to really bond with these creatures and then they turn on him and are more screwed up then his own family. Boring, sad and annoying even though it had a few funny parts.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 3
—Samantha Taylor, age 35 (USA)
Negative—I can honestly say I was not happy that I chose to watch this film after my children had already seen it. Bad choice! I did not like how dark this film was at all. I do not agree with others that this film teaches children to deal with the lonely challenging aspects of life. It gave no hope whatsoever, and frankly it scared me that my child cried at the end when Max was leaving in the boat, and the monster was on the shore. I felt like this movie had ripped her heart open for an unknown and twisted reason, and then left her hanging there without resolution or understanding as to why she hurt. It was horrible. This is a film full of a bunch of negative, hopeless, angry, withdrawn, miserable characters. Who wants to read or watch that? It is dismal and teaches children that destruction of property is fun and okay when you are feeling down. It also frankly makes me think that some child might just be pushed over the edge watching a film such as this dark hopeless story. Please do not let your children watch it.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 4
—AF, age 39 (USA)
Comments from young people
Negative—This movie was weird and had an awkward emotion attached to it throughout everything that happened. It was boring in some points and the ending was terrible. The movie got advertised as something it was not. Most kids will not enjoy it. One last word… Creepy!
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 3½
—Emily, age 11 (USA)
Neutral—I saw this film with my mom. I saw the trailers and recall reading the book a long time ago, and I was interested in the art direction of the film. After viewing the film, I came away feeling like nothing was really resolved. Max never truly made amends with his mom, though he obviously understands her more clearly after his experience with the monsters. When KW swallows Max to protect him from a raging Carol, Max then realizes more about himself and his mom. However, when Max returns home, there is absolutely no dialog. This could very well be an artistic decision by the filmmakers, but I wanted to hear some vocal resolutions—I wanted to hear Max explain to his mom about how he is sorry for hurting her.

After seeing how Carol reacted around his family, Max understood more about himself and how others would feel around someone so uncontrollable. I think that it takes some digging to really understand the concepts the film was trying to get across, so younger kids wouldn’t get it at all. The monsters can be frightening, but they can also be sweet and gentle. The designs of the monsters are adorable in my opinion—they have lifelike, sad faces. The film moves way too quickly in the beginning. There isn’t enough explanation about Max and his experiences, and it seems to rush through his personal life to get to the monsters. As a consequence, a lot of scenes with the monsters move too slowly and some scenes felt completely unnecessary for the good of the plot. What was up with Bob and Terry?!

On more positive notes: the acting was superb—the voices blended seamlessly with the monsters, and the boy actor was outstanding. The art design of the film in general was very good. There were some lighthearted moments with the monsters, such as the dog pile scene. However, this is not a children’s movie by any means. Not only does it take some deep thinking to realize plot elements, but the monsters can be frightening at times. If you enjoy looking at beautiful art, good acting and intriguing character designs, that’s the only reason why I’d recommend this film.

If you want an uplifting, feel-good story… look somewhere else.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 4
—Kayla, age 16 (USA)
Positive—I don’t get why people didn’t like this movie. Its a beautiful, entertaining and sad movie. It’s not really a “family” movie, its targeted at older kids and adults. I think its the best movie I have seen all year of 2009 so far. It beats Star Trek, X Men Origins and Up by far. Now people thought those where terrific but this is a lot better. The only problem I had with this movie is that it’s long.

The only thing that you could call offensive in this movie is that the mom and the monster Douglas say d--- one time but that’s about it. The thing you should know about the movie is DO NOT take any kid under the age of nine to see this movie because during the movie I saw many families with younger kids leave the movie because they were bored. But any kid over the age of nine was entertained. To sum it all up in a few sentences is that I recommend this movie in every way to everyone. Not everybody will enjoy it but most critics enjoyed it. Go see this movie and its worth every penny.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Good / Moviemaking quality: 4½
—Langston, age 12 (USA)
Positive—I enjoyed this film; however, your children probably won’t. It is not a kid’s movie. I was seated in front of a toddler who was bored and confused through the entire thing. There was minor language, some slight violence, and some lies told by a child. The choppy video effects during some of the action scenes made a friend of mine feel ill. But it was a beautiful film. The script is sweet and real, the scenery isolated and dream-like. The plot is complicated and symbolic—all things that would be lost to a preschooler. I was enthralled by the simple way the story played out, and impressed with both the young actor Max Records, and whomever was walking around in those large puppet costumes! So, I would recommend this movie to anyone about 10 or up who doesn’t think they would be bored by it. God bless you!
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 4½
—Katie, age 15 (USA)
PositiveDiscussion Starter: Near the beginning, Max promises that he’ll be a King who gets rid of “loneliness and sadness” bad feelings, and anger. At the end, when he is unable to fulfill his promise, a Wild Thing comments sadly, “I don’t think there is a King who can do all that.” When I heard that I wanted to jump up and scream, “But there is!” Jesus Christ is the King who will wipe every tear from our eyes.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 4
—Katie, age 15 (USA)
Neutral—I was looking forward to this movie since the first time I saw that it was coming out as a real life people, not a cartoon! I loved this as a book when I was little and was expecting the movie to be a good, fun time. This movie wasn’t exactly what I was expecting. It was more for young adults and adults, not for children.

Now, I’m not saying it was scary, but it was more about relationships and not really a kid based fun, family movie. They even bring a doomsday thing into it. It was a very dark movie, and everyone kept getting mad at each other and it had barley any happy parts to it. But, this was still a very good movie. The cinematography is outstanding and the acting is great! I just wouldn’t take kids to see this movie. I think they would come out a little bit confused and maybe frightened. The earliest age should probably be 10 to see this movie.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 4½
—Matt, age 13 (USA)
Positive—I LOVE THIS MOVIE! It wasn’t all funny, but it had a good meaning. If you are strict about violence though, this movie is probably not the one for you. The part I didn’t like was when Max bites his mom. Otherwise, I thought this movie was great!!
My Ratings: Moral rating: Excellent! / Moviemaking quality: 5
—Gloria, age 12 (USA)
Negative—I didn’t think that this movie was going to be fantastic, and it turns out I was correct. This movie was supposed to be a great movie. just like the book. This is the only reason I went, and my mom was going. This movie was much much darker than I expected. He is not ornery as I thought he would be, but out of control! In the movie he becomes angry that his mom has a date over and gets up on the counter and starts screaming at her! She then struggles to get him off, lands on the ground, start wrestling, and he ends up biting her! Hard! He ends running away….

They twisted the book into a dismal story. The only thing good was, kids could have gotten out of the movie is to behave and appreciate your parents. I did not watch the entire movie because I ended up walking out! When I met my mom after the movie she and our friends were trying to figure out the movie. My mom could NOT get over how much of a dark, disappointing movie it was! I strongly suggest you DON’T WASTE YOUR MONEY AND TIME TO SEE THIS MOVIE!
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 3½
—Abbey, age 12 (USA)
PositiveMorally: I have read a lot of harsh and inaccurate reviews on this page about “Where the Wild Things Are.” It seems that Christians who were offended by this film and have written negative reviews are offended because this movie demonstrates strong Christian beliefs!

“Where the Wild Things Are” is about an emotionally traumatized little boy whose parents have divorced, whose sister doesn’t care for him as much as she used to, who watches in horror as his mother dates someone (not his father), and he is lonely and out of control. This movie shows clearly and intentionally that without Christ’s saving grace in our lives there is no hope. This movie supports marriage and shows the horrors of a broken household. This movie demonstrates that sins affect other people. This movie demonstrates that we cannot look to our own strength or the strength of others to solve all of our problems. more »
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 5
—William S., age 17 (USA)
Negative—I watched “Where the Wild Things Are” movie, by myself, with no one to comment on it to. So throughout the movie I was saying to my two dogs, “I can’t believe this,” or “this is pathetic!” This was a horrible movie! This is the worst movie I have ever seen, and I have seen “Igor.”

In the beginning of the movie, Max builds a fort of snow. He goes to ask his sister to play with him, and when she ignores him, he gets some teens to play with him. Max gets hurt accidentally, and no one cares. He takes it out on his sister… No self control… Later, Max totally goes out of control. He has no respect for his mom, the only good part of this movie is when his mom’s date tells her that Max can’t treat her that way. But that’s it. more »
My Ratings: Moral rating: Very Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 2½
—Madison, age 12 (USA)
Comments from non-viewers
Personally I’ve been on the fence about watching this. Although the cinematic and artistic concepts seem excellent, and the thought of looking through a child’s perspective is very appealing, from this it looks really dark. I’m a recovering fantasy buff, so I’m trying my best to stay away from things that are too Labrynth-esque. I just have a steal-trap for a mind, so I’m trying to keep in mind the good and bad. The trailers obviously don’t capture the tone of the movie at all, but at the same time it gives it a deeper depth. We don’t really understand the mind of a child, or even our own mind when we were kids, until it’s in hindsight years later.

The melancholy tone is like the tone of the world: the “sorrow of the world.” I have no younger siblings who are coming to this, probably just me, and it makes me think of what a promise that we have as Christians that the world is trying to find in just “accepting the fate of the world.” Or at least what THEY think it will be.

And also when the teacher says that the sun is “going to die” after we do, it may turn into a good discussion topic for kids! Telling them what man thinks and what the Bible says. I mean, my Pastor was just saying last Sunday that his granddaughter told him they’re trying to teach her that our brain may have come from some kind of coming together of worms that just evolving into a mass. Totally false, I know, but that’s what the “educated high-class” are trying to teach. Also the monsters wanting to have a king is like man’s longing for the Lord, and when they put their hope in a human who is flawed they were heartbroken.

On the same token it needs to be remembered that people such as myself, where everything is open to interpretation, may focus on the bad things.

I think the biggest red flag for me was the arm getting ripped off, which started to really allude to how dark it really was. The whole roaring “I’m going to eat you!!!” thing with Carol was going to be scary, there would be emotional tension constantly which might make the viewer uncomfortable, and seeing the sadness and lonesomeness of Max and wishing someone was there for him would make me saddened as well. I know it’s a movie, but sometimes those things are too sadly true.

Like the comment I read about someone saying they wanted to shout that there was a King: the Lord, and I totally agree, but the thing is that those characters aren’t real. There are people who believe that they need someone, but they’re not on the screen, they’re in the world, where we need to be. I’d more than likely enjoy this, I like deep introspective movies, but I can’t say that I wouldn’t feel guilty having watched it. I’m just afraid for my mind’s and spirit’s sake. This is the first movie I’ve really delved into a lot of research to see if it was appropriate from a Christian standpoint, and yet it seems the more I did the more I would feel uncomfortable to see it… I’m just not sure at all…
—Stephanie, age 18 (USA)
I have not viewed this movie (and most likely will not, for the same reason I am writing this review), but I felt that I should at least say something about my feelings of this film.

To begin, you can tell by the commercials that, at least visually, it has something going for it; the monsters look like something a child would see in their fantasies, only perhaps even more real, the settings seem amazing, and so on. I however, can see how this movie is not what they presented it to be in commercials, as far as storyline goes; it is NOT a playful, happy children’s movie created simply to incite the imagination or to put the book on the big screen. It appears dark, scary, and sad, at least to a much further extent than they advertised. And from what I’ve read, there is not much of a resolve to pull the story (and the characters) out from this darkness.

I feel I must mention that I too had issues of rage (around the same age as this boy in the film, actually), feeling the need to lash out and hurt someone or break something. I usually had yelled at my parents at least one everyday, screamed, cried, and felt the darkness churn within my heart.

I had no real friends, was lonely constantly, and angry at everyone. The worst part was that no one around me took it seriously, especially not my parents. School, my dreams, and even God on some days didn’t seem matter anymore: I was empty. I don’t know how I would have gotten through without God’s love, in fact I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have. This is what bothers me: the message that God is not there, or that he’s if He is He’s not good enough or doesn’t care.

Sometimes I wonder how kids like me who don’t have God make it through life, but soon I realize they often don’t: homicide, drugs, suicide and other hopeless options are all the world has to offer them. They ruin (or end) their lives because they are told that “life doesn’t matter”, that “we must fix ourselves”, that “God doesn’t exist”. Without God, life is cheap. That’s why I don’t recommend movies or books with such themes.

It’s kind of like building an amazing custom car and driving it off a cliff. It’s a waste of effort and potential. It’s not worth anyone’s time. We as Christians don’t need to hear this rubbish message over and over again. May be I’m misjudging this film-after all, I didn’t see it. But I’ve “been there, done that” when it comes to rage, violence feelings, and loneliness, and a movie which touches these issues but offers no hopeful conclusion or true solution just aggravates the problem. But choose for yourself; after all, it’s just me and my opinion. God’s the one who you should ask about seeing this film.
—Rene, age 15 (USA)
I have not had the pleasure of viewing this film, but I did fall in love with the book and so did my now 13 year old daughter. My 13 year old is supposed to go and see this movie with her father this weekend and I will not be attending. I trust your feed back and I have decided to allow her to see this movie. I appreciated your clear and God sent response to “Where did Cain find a wife and was she kin?” Wow! You broke that down as if God himself were speaking to me. Thank you.
—Krissi L, age 33 (USA)
I was looking through all the negative comments about this story and it having a hopeless feel to it. In a way, this is good because it’s told from a non-Christian perspective. Many secular movies are not honest with viewers and represent things wrong. They point kids to self esteem and believing in yourself, etc. which does not solve the real problem (our sin). As a result many (including CHristians) seek to be fulfilled with relationships, careers, money, good works, etc. The Truth is without Christ, life is pretty dark and hopeless. Maybe this is what we need to communicate to our children after watching this movie, and also explain to them this is why we need to share this precious gospel to everyone. just my 2 cents. God bless.
—Carlos, age 40 (USA)