Resurrected Living
"What are you going to do with your new resurrected life? This is the heroic question." Richard Rohr

Let the Wild Rumpus Begin!

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“Where the Wild Things Are” is one of the best movies of the year.  It is based on the classic children’s book by Maurice Sendak.  The book is a brief story, about 10 sentences, but it is wonderfully illustrated, which allows children and adults to use their imagination.  Spike Jonze, who directed the movie, does a great job of adapting a short children’s book into a movie.  Although he makes a few changes and has to expand on the story, he stays true to the heart of the book.

The story is about a little boy named Max who struggles to deal with problems in his life.  Max’s problems might not seem like much to us, but to him they are a big deal.  One night when he is not receiving the attention he feels he deserves he blows up and runs away.  He sails to an island where the wild things live.  This island is a place where a kid can do whatever he wants.  The wild things like Max so much they make him their king.  Things are great at first and everyone is happy, but it is not long before problems arise in the group and they expect their king to make them go away.

The movie is told from the perspective of Max.  We see what he sees and we feel what he feels.  It is a story about growing up and learning to live with others.  All Max wants to do is be happy and play, so he runs away to the island.  At first it seems as though playing and happiness is all there is on the island, but there are other feelings such as sadness and anger.  When Max witnesses these feelings in the wild things he begins to learn a lot about himself.

Some have suggested that this movie may be too scary for small children, but I disagree.  I think “The Wizard of Oz” is more scary than this movie.  When asked about the scariness of the book Maurice Sendak replied “If you tell the truth to children it is OK.”  When I watched this movie I was in a theater filled with children and most of them were younger.  A lot of times I do not like to be in a movie theater where the movie is interrupted, but it was a joy to be in the theater and listen to the children interact with the film.  I never once heard sounds of fright.  I only heard sounds of joy.

As an adult you may not want to see this film, because it is a children’s film.  Many of the children’s movies released today are mindless garbage, but this is not one.  In fact, I am not sure I would classify it as a children’s movie.  It is a movie like “The Wizard of Oz” or “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory” that are enjoyed by children and adults alike.  No matter what your age go see “Where the Wild Things Are” and don’t forget to bring your imagination to the theater.

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