Thursday, November 5, 2009

Where The Wild Things Are

Only ten sentences total, written almost fifty years ago – and yet Where The Wild Things Are continues to capture the collective imagination. It goes without saying that Maurice Sendak’s book is a Lovemark (it’s currently sitting at #28 in the rankings).

Like all great picture books, Wild Things is high on Intimacy – it’s perfect bedtime story material after all – looking with great empathy through the eyes of a rambunctious young lad to show a world both tremendously exciting and a little scary. But it’s also a tale doused in Mystery – tapping into the powerful dream of running fearlessly into adventures much bigger than you are, and providing the iconic figure of Max in his wolf-costume, staring down the monsters.

The long awaited movie adaptation from Spike Jonze looks like it’s heading in the Lovemarks direction too. From what the trailer reveals, there’s been great thought put into the preserving the magic of the book, without grounding it in the past. And while the otherworldly landscapes and beasts bear true to Sendak’s legendary illustrations, the soundtrack songs – all rousing indie-rock anthems from the likes of the Arcade Fire and Karen O – couldn’t be more modern and they fit perfectly. Talk about past, present and future!

The creative team behind the movie have got the Participation Economy down pat. Check out the very cool fort making competition they ran - fans of all ages were invited to take up Max’s mantle and turn a humble bedroom into something much more wild and mysterious. And through a collaboration with US label Opening Ceremony, those who want to wear their Wild-Thing love loud and proud can pick up inspired shaggy coats, talon rings, and – the ultimate – Max’s wolf suit.