I shouldn’t even have to tell you how important it is to go to the movies this week, because “Where The Wild Things Are” is finally here and you should be so frickin’ excited!!! In case you’re not into beautiful, fantastic movies and would rather be terrified, there is also “The Stepfather.” And if you’re just not in the mood to relive your childhood sense of adventure but want to see an awesome movie about relationships, “New York, I Love You” is also in limited release now, even though it wasn’t supposed to come out until February. So rejoice. And get popcorn!
The Movie: “Where The Wild Things Are”
The Trailer: If you don’t know the plot line, you were robbed of a childhood. Obviously, the movie is based on Maurice Sendak’s children’s book from 1963 where a boy named Max causes trouble in his wolf suit and his mother sends him to bed without supper. So with his imagination, he creates a sea which he sails on to get to the land of wild things and becomes their king. The book only contained 10 sentences, so Dave Eggers took on the screenplay to bulk it up, add a background story and character development. Spike Jonze created a whole new world that is both consistent with the original and one ups it.
The Hitch: I think Max Records (“The Brothers Bloom”) is the cutest kid ever, and he’s clearly very bright since he’s obsessed with the book. He says, “It’s not moralistic or patronizing. It’s not ‘Johnny did something bad and had to apologize.’ It’s about being a kid. It’s just real.” Maurice Sendak actually offered the job to Spike Jonze over 10 years ago and Jonze couldn’t imagine how to fix something that already seemed like perfection. But Jonze found a “naturalistic” way to create the fantasy world instead of relying on computer generated images, filming in Australia with puppet monsters, giant costumes, and big-time actors filling in for the monster voices. As a bonus, the soundtrack was taken on by Karen O. I couldn’t be more excited about all the goodness going into this movie. Its parts are perfection, so the end product has got to be totally mind-blowing.
The Movie: “The Stepfather”
The Trailer: Based on the 1987 movie where a nice enough man marries a widow and eventually everyone learns he’s a psycho murderer, in this remake, a teenager (Penn Badgley) comes home to find his divorced momma (Sela Ward) shacking up with a creepy man (Dylan Walsh). This almost immediately sparks suspicion from Badgley and his bikini-clad girlfriend (Amber Heard).
The Hitch: Well, it looks awful, but the first version earned two sequels and it’s really original to demonize step parents. It’s kinda weird, but I feel really bad for how evil step parents are made to look in movies—they’re almost never nice and are usually trying to kill you. What’s the deal? I guess if you like scary movies and hot girls in bikinis, or Penn Badgley, then this movie will totally be your cup of tea,so knock yourself out!
The Movie: “New York, I Love You”
The Trailer: From the producers of “Paris, Je T’aime,” “New York, I Love You” is the same shtick, a series of short love stories taken on by different directors with a slew of awesome actors, including Natalie Portman (who also wrote and directed one of the shorts), Bradley Cooper, Blake Lively, Orlando Bloom, Rachel Bilson, Christina Ricci and Ethan Hawke for starters. Scarlett Johansson was supposed to make her directorial debut in this one, but her piece along with another one were cut when the film became too sprawling.
The Hitch: Despite the lack of advertising, this looks kind of fantastic. When walking around New York, it always feels like you’re witnessing a million individual stories everyday, so it is nice to get a movie that gives into our voyeuristic fascination. But every time I read the title, I can’t but help think of the LCD Soundsystem, “New York I Love You But You’re Bringing Me Down,” which is a brilliant song.