Magazine November 23, 2009, Issue

Dark and Wild

(Warner Bros.)

Adapting a beloved children’s book for the screen is a difficult task. Adapting a beloved picture book, famous as much for its vivid illustrations as for its spartan plot, is considerably more challenging. Doing it while answering to an increasingly skeptical studio, whose moneymen are convinced that you’re squandering their investment on an expensive art film that’s too childish for adults and too bizarre for children — well, that’s a real test of a director’s mettle.

It’s a test that Spike Jonze has passed. His version of Maurice Sendak’s Where the Wild Things Are, five difficult years in the making, is

In This Issue



Books, Arts & Manners


China Alone?

When China Rules the World: The End of the Western World and the Birth of a New Global Order, by Martin Jacques (Penguin, 576 pp., $29.95)
Film & TV

Dark and Wild

This is a film about childhood that can be appreciated by pretentious, nitpicky grown-ups, it will find its fiercest fans among the Maxes of the world




‘Would it not be easier,” wrote Bertolt Brecht after the East German uprising in 1953, “for the government to dissolve the people and elect another?”