My two cents.
I loved this movie. For many reasons. First of all, it is not a children's movie. Sorry to those who thought it was. But it's not. I think it's too dark for children and the themes handled in the movie are too complex for children. I sat next to a kid and there was a part where all the adults laughed and she laughed too but then asked her mom what was funny. This seemed to be the case through most of the movie. I'm really glad it was not a children's movie. I actually really don't like children's movies that can also cater to adults. The humor is annoying to me. I'm one of the jerky people in the world that hated Finding Nemo! We are a rare breed so I tried to keep those opinions to myself.
Obviously the movie was very visually stunning. I was in a constant state of chills. The art in the movie was gorgeous and the monsters were my cup of tea. I loved the voices that came out of them.
And Dave Eggers did a great job writing the movie. I've admittedly never read any of his books before but I'd like to check them out now. The story is something that could be talked about in discussion groups for days. It was so complex and so painfully truthful about the loneliness of being a child. I think through most of the movie I kept thinking about how blown away I was by the plot.
Only complaint. It got a little slow at times. The pacing can be a bit weird. This also adds to the Why It's Not A Children's Movie list. The girl next to me? She slept through most of it. It was cute.
I really felt bad for all the kids there because it got a little scary at times. I was hoping it wouldn't give them bad dreams. If you have kids and you want them to see it definitely pre-screen before taking them. Maybe you'll decide it's not too dark. I was listening to This American Life the other day and they were talking about nightmares. One of the stories was about a grown man who saw The Shining when he was small and how that movie terrorized him. I know these are two very different movies but they talked about how you never know what scares children. I used to be afraid of everything when I was little. A list:
That alien guy in meatballs 2
an animal skull my sister and i found
in the indiana jones movie when the rock covers the cave door. i thought that would happen to my bedroom door when i went to sleep at night.
my My Buddy doll
our living room (it seemed haunted)
and probably countless other things.
I hope you like my review. Go see the movie if you haven't already! Let me know what you thought of it.