Spike Jonze told Ain’t It Cool News he wrote WTWTA’s script while listening to Funeral (“[the] record is thematically very connected to the film”) and that before shooting he cut a mood piece soundtracked by “Wake Up” to inspire his crew. Karen O who?

Comments (87)
  1. tommy  |   Posted on Oct 15th, 2009 0

    this makes me want to see the film even more.

    now when are they going to officially release that alternate “wake up” that soundtracks the trailer?

  2. If Spike Jonze ruins Where The Wild Things Are by turning it into Garden State, Im going to be pissed.

  3. moopig  |   Posted on Oct 15th, 2009 0

    Yes, that explains a lot, Spike Jonze, you horrible man. No wonder the totally unnecessary film version of a classic children’s book is looking like just another fey, faux-cathartic piece of shit to add to the pile. Hey, sounds a lot like Funeral!

  4. Paul Ramon  |   Posted on Oct 15th, 2009 0

    Quasi-spiritual fake nostalgia really pushes that button, don’t it.

  5. bootyfish  |   Posted on Oct 15th, 2009 0

    Yeah, Quasi-moto is makin’ a comeback yall.

  6. tommy  |   Posted on Oct 15th, 2009 0

    guys, guys, why all the backlash? spike jonze made a film about a book all hipsters remember loving as children and said that pitchfork’s #2 album of the decade inspired him throughout the process!

    did i miss an ironic joke along the way?

  7. Chris  |   Posted on Oct 15th, 2009 0

    Dude. You’re a dick. You probably like the smell of your own farts huh?

  8. Chris  |   Posted on Oct 15th, 2009 0

    Dude. You’re a dick. You probably like the smell of your own farts huh?

  9. Fred  |   Posted on Oct 16th, 2009 0

    Dude. You’re a dick. You probably clicked “submit” twice huh?

    • Chris  |   Posted on Oct 16th, 2009 0

      Nope. My computer screwed up. But you’re right. I am a dick. But being a dick is better than being an asshole.

  10. BURNNNN  |   Posted on Oct 16th, 2009 0

    BURNNNNNN

  11. daniel  |   Posted on Oct 16th, 2009 0

    You disenfranchised Indie hipsters with your ‘holier than thou’ attitude towards anything you deem too contrived for your cynical interior really shit me to tears. I hate the Internet fot this very reason, everything that straddles the line between commercialism and underground reverence you shit on like it’s not ‘real’ enough for your superior tastes. More than likely, you will go and see this film, and cry from beginnig to end because it will remind you of how indifferent you were as a child, and how you’ve become a grumpy old dick head spitting venom on your keyboards at anyone who shows the slightest bit of earnestness in their art, or even gets excited to hear that this wonderful looking film was inspired by a wonderful album that I’m sure if you’d discovered in a dirty record store down an old dark alley, you’d be saying it was the second coming. Please fuck off you elitist pricks.

    • matt  |   Posted on Oct 16th, 2009 0

      Thank you! I’m so sick of people who think theyre so cool because they claim to hate anything that may constitute hipster behaviour. Caring about not caring what people think of you is twice as stupid as caring what people think of you. I love the Arcade Fire and this movie looks amazing and it’s a great childrens book as well. Whatever.
      PS What are you cynical dicks allowed to like? Or do yo just bitch about everything?

      • aether_tron  |   Posted on Oct 23rd, 2009 0

        wow, this is a very unchill thread. There’s a lot of genuine frustration and irritation flying back and forth. Also, there’s some serious debates about the “hipster” label. I can feel the irritation, defensiveness and desperation. “when my parents are crying, then I’ll dig a tunnel from my window to yours.” I can feel the urge to listen to funeral and reflect welling up inside of me, YEA YEA a TUNNEL! FROM MY WINDOW TO YOURS! So “meaningful!”

    • matt  |   Posted on Oct 16th, 2009 0

      Thank you! I’m so sick of people who think theyre so cool because they claim to hate anything that may constitute hipster behaviour. Caring about not caring what people think of you is twice as stupid as caring what people think of you. I love the Arcade Fire and this movie looks amazing and it’s a great childrens book as well. Whatever.
      PS What are you cynical dicks allowed to like? Or do yo just bitch about everything?

    • moopig  |   Posted on Oct 16th, 2009 0

      i am not an “Indie hipster”, and if I’m not mistaken, “indie hipsters” ARE the people that like the arcade fire. i will not go see this film, and if i did, i would not cry. in addition, i am not grumpy, old, or a dick head, and neither is anyone else who’s sick of EVERY worthwhile piece of pop culture recycled endlessly.

      this movie is basically trying to co-opt the whole funeral aesthetic. the vast majority of that album is rote and boring music enhanced with histrionic singing and production. this does not equal emotional power. for hipsters, who do not know how to feel, it seems like something affecting.

      if you need a quick summation of why a lot of people feel this way about the band, its basically this: the arcade fire present themselves as an enormous catharsis relating to personal pain or tragedy, and the surrounding internet hype seized this in a huge way. for anyone who has experienced worse pain/tragedy than a GRANDMOTHER DYING (not to dismiss this, but virtually everyone has this happen to them before they are too old), it rings extraordinarily false.

      as charlie said below this, its “fake corporate artiness”.

      • Mr.Quick  |   Posted on Oct 16th, 2009 0

        ” am not an “Indie hipster”, and if I’m not mistaken, “indie hipsters” ARE the people that like the arcade fire”
        Not only did you prove his point for him, but you alsoproved you live in some fucking flyover state where hipsters havent turned on Arcade Fire yet. If you weren’t so fucking predictable I’d envy you.
        I wish hipsters here were a few years behind. They’d be more tolerable.

      • Wow, I wish I was as countercultured as you.
        If only I could dismiss everything just to be the misunderstood misfit…..

        If you can’t even recognize the fact that Arcade Fire are incredible musicians, regardless of whether or not their music is cool enough for you, then you are ignorant. They work hard, a hell of a lot harder than most popular artists right now.

      • You seem to know lots about this movie, considering you haven’t seen it.

    • shawn bradley  |   Posted on Oct 16th, 2009 0

      pretty much all true, just not as gay or cry-babyish

    • mark  |   Posted on Oct 19th, 2009 0

      I love the irony of your rant.

      And for the record, I hated hipsters before you.

    • Brittni  |   Posted on Oct 20th, 2009 0

      been listening to “admit it” lately haven’t you, daniel? christ.

  12. JLoco  |   Posted on Oct 16th, 2009 0

    This movie is gorgeous.
    Whatever the inspiration was…

  13. Bender Bending Rodriguez  |   Posted on Oct 16th, 2009 0

    So what’s it about? Some kind of Wookie?

  14. scott  |   Posted on Oct 16th, 2009 0

    why are you all being so negative? has everyone forgotten that I just put my hands up they’re playing my song the butterflies fly away, nodding my head like yeah moving my hips like yeah. i put my hands up their playing my song yeahhhhhh its a party in the usa.

  15. brian  |   Posted on Oct 16th, 2009 0

    i wish i didn’t have to register to upvote the above two comments

    in regards to WTWTA, haterz gon hate. their loss.

  16. Charlie  |   Posted on Oct 16th, 2009 0

    I hate the faux indie handmade logotype, I hate the soundtrack, I hate the CGI….basically this is corporate fake artiness…People, you have a right to complain!!!

  17. Charlie  |   Posted on Oct 16th, 2009 0

    Especially after the big marketing blitz…

  18. JLoco  |   Posted on Oct 16th, 2009 0

    What “logo-type” would you prefer?
    How would you like this to be marketed?
    Who would you prefer to be on the soundtrack?
    Offer up some alternatives, please.
    OR
    Maybe you should see the movie before you criticize it.
    How is this approach of hating it before you see it any different than liking something before you experience it?

    PS…
    CGI wasn’t used.

    There’s NOTHING worse than an uninformed critic.

    • pregnantsow  |   Posted on Oct 16th, 2009 0

      yeah, i can’t think of a single thing worse. torture, genocide, spike jonze – they all bow before a uninformed critic.

      • JLoco  |   Posted on Oct 18th, 2009 0

        OH?
        Was this thread about torture and genocide?
        Way to lose sight of the context there…
        And yes, I know I’m leaving myself open to some witty replies…so, I’ll say it now…
        You are welcome.

  19. Alec  |   Posted on Oct 16th, 2009 0

    I feel I need to point out (before some douche goes calling names and shit) that CGI was used for the Wild Things’ faces, becuse they couldn’t get the mechanics to work…
    But I agree with everything else you pointed out. A lot of great films (not to automatically label this as a GREAT film) were distributed by major media. Let’s face it guys, making a movie is a very different medium from making an album. Plus, I thought the CGI looked good in this one!

  20. Courtney Love  |   Posted on Oct 16th, 2009 0

    Wait, so this movie isn’t about my crotch? Heh, never judge a movie by its title…

  21. Drunk Jew  |   Posted on Oct 16th, 2009 0

    Made-on-a-mac!! Not enough contrast on the CGI faces…

  22. I think the movie looks like fun. relax a bit.

  23. “Who cares?!?” just watch the movie if your interested, and Funeral was a good album and Where the Wild Things Are is classic. It’s just opinions, chill, nothing is real. hahahaah yea… and destroy/burn your computers, I’m being confined to this hellish thing, since society now relys on technology for education; fuck it! and i get on these blog sites, while I’m doing said work, and I see people bitching over stupid shit (This goes for all). It’s sad what the generation came to. Enjoy. No Reply

  24. Drunk Jew  |   Posted on Oct 16th, 2009 0

    Not gonna see it…

  25. Megan  |   Posted on Oct 16th, 2009 0

    why can’t we all just love each other?

  26. I think it’s laughable that people are dismissing this as a terrible film before they’ve even seen it, based largely on their opinions of an album that inspired the script. I love Arcade Fire and Funeral, and I’ll probably enjoy the film. Yeah, the album is histrionic, much like most of the dissenters’ remarks on this comments page (some prime examples: “I hate the faux indie handmade logotype, I hate the soundtrack, I hate the CGI”; “just another fey, faux-cathartic piece of shit to add to the pile. Hey, sounds a lot like Funeral!”). That doesn’t mean it is a ‘fake’ album, just as it doesn’t mean yours are fake opinions.

  27. brandon  |   Posted on Oct 17th, 2009 0

    i just saw the movie and thought it thought it was beautiful.

    yeah… um… am i a hipster, now?

  28. brandon  |   Posted on Oct 17th, 2009 0

    crap.

    apparently i am dyslexic now, or something.

  29. Badger  |   Posted on Oct 17th, 2009 0

    No one’s own taste for music is going to be the same as others. A little respect for a diversity of taste would be nice. Remember that the music you love today will be seen by your son’s and daughters as silly and out of date and you probaly won’t like what they will be listening to. I don’t like country but I don’t bash those who do. My parents liked ABBA and I almost vomit when I hear it but I don’t bash them for liking it. Try to be respectfull when bloging and watch your language.

  30. A-Ok  |   Posted on Oct 17th, 2009 0

    Gonna watch the divisional series instead

  31. well, i’m not really sure what everybody’s so mad about, but I will say that I saw this today and I didn’t like it at all. Really contrived and heavy handed. I left thinking, “I thought this was a children’s story why was it boring and sad”

  32. Joe  |   Posted on Oct 18th, 2009 0

    Ever notice how when someone wants to turn their opinion into some sort of biting criticism masquerading as a fact, they just add “faux” or “quasi” to the front of it? No, it’s not just you thinking this isn’t cathartic (without even having seen it, by the way), it’s “FAUX-cathartic,” whatever that means.

    • Well  |   Posted on Oct 19th, 2009 0

      I know that anti-intellectualism is really popular these days, but by “faux” he meant “falsely,” and that’s probably less bookish than quasi. Can’t we have conversations with words and not have to feel insecure about it/dumb ourselves down?

      That said, I think it’s the biggest thing the movie and the band have in common. Faux-catharsis. It feels like this huge uplifting thing, like your entire life has culminated into this Karen-O freak folk moment, but then right when it’s over you throw your sticky popcorn bag onto the ground, return home, jerk off, and gracefully resume drone life.

      Don’t forget about the part where you comment about this on the internet.

      • Joe  |   Posted on Oct 20th, 2009 0

        My whole point is there are people who do genuinely get inspired by this, even though you don’t. Slapping the label faux-cathartic on it implies it doesn’t posses any cathartic qualities to anyone. It’s a label that carries an objective value. The reality is, if someone gets inspired by this and that leads to a creative outburt, then it *is* cathartic to that person. And this is what happened with Spike.

        The “whatever that means” part was a bit of sarcasm.

  33. bootyfish  |   Posted on Oct 18th, 2009 0

    I don’t know what “Wild things” has to do with Arcade Fire, but that scene where Neve Cambell makes out with Denise Richards is HOT!!!! Booyah.

  34. coop  |   Posted on Oct 19th, 2009 0

    the movie is trash/ made me lose faith in art/ i give up on music/ i’m going to throw away my records and not question the meaning of life anymore

  35. will  |   Posted on Oct 19th, 2009 0

    it really doesnt matter how pretentious are faux-hipster bitches think this movie is; i still believe firmly that its better than 95% of the shit that comes out of the box office weekly.

    its been said before: dont like it, dont fucking go see it. your angsty little comments are a dime a dozen, so if youre sick of this “pretentious” stuff then sulk in silence because every other stuck up movie/music snob feels the same way and every one else is well aware of your bullshit over-inflated opinions.

  36. Screen writing can take a few years, it is possible that he was working on this script when everyone was crapping their pants over Arcade Fire and it was still hip to like them.

  37. Well, if crapping your pants over arcade fire is cool, I’m miles davis.

  38. Dengel  |   Posted on Oct 20th, 2009 0

    Ooooooh NOW I get why Pfork doesn’t have any “Comments” function. BRILLIANT! It’s tough to enjoy a website’s content when, below each article, is a three-mile stream of anti-hipster/hipster denial ranting. You guys are making it seriously hard to pin you down!

    Oh yeah, btw, we should applaud Spike Jonze for his courageous honesty despite the shitstorm that was inevitable to follow. I mean, #1 most commented on Stereogum? That man must have some huge faux-balls.

    • red  |   Posted on Oct 20th, 2009 0

      don’t have comments cuz’ its not a blog and that’s why you’re here commenting idiot.

      • Dan  |   Posted on Oct 20th, 2009 0

        Non-blog websites can have comments sections – NY Times for instance, GameFAQs as well, for the other end of the spectrum. Next.

  39. Well, I though Funeral was a pretty good album and there are certainly worse albums with which to write a movie to.

    I saw WTWTA in IMAX and, well, it was pretty ok. It didn’t give me shivers or anything, but certainly brought me back to that place in childhood where emotions just seemed so absolute; that they would never shift.

    They do, and so will my opinion of the movie if I see it again, or my impression of Funeral, I imagine, in five more years or so.

  40. ed  |   Posted on Oct 20th, 2009 0

    question for everybody, so why didn’t he use the whole album itself as the soundtrack?

  41. Wayne Coyne  |   Posted on Oct 20th, 2009 +1

    Arcade Fire are assholes

  42. Funeral was all I listened to during my college years. I’m not the least bit surprised by it’s influence on this film. Now does anyone feel Ok Computer inspired Fight Club back in 1998? ?

  43. Michael  |   Posted on Oct 21st, 2009 0

    I find it ironic that everyone uses the word ironic in here like its going out of style.

    isn’t that what hipsters do? try to find irony in everything?

    way to hog the intellectual spot light, jerks.

    =(

  44. pizzapourty  |   Posted on Oct 21st, 2009 0

    dont know about ya’ll but I’m having a satanic p i z z a p a r t y tonight!
    ima blast funeral!!!!!!!! dont hate!

  45. jimmycity  |   Posted on Oct 21st, 2009 0

    Saw the movie, and liked it very much. My boyfriend went apeshit over it, however, and I can’t say I was THAT taken with it. I thought the weakest part was the soundtrack, actually. But, having admitted that, I couldn’t articulate why the music didn’t work for me, or what would have been better. Maybe a full symphonic treatment would have suited the style and pacing, I guess.

  46. A couple of things:

    1. I understand the premeditated hate. When something “classic” is appropriated within the highest echelon of ostensible indie culture (Urban Outfitters), a preemptive counter reaction to a “corporate” counterculture is expected.
    2. Instead of basing the film merit’s on the buzz or popularity of the release, look at the track record instead. For me, what got me excited was the fact that Dave Eggers co-wrote it and Spike Jonze, who directed two brilliant movies (Being John Malkovich and Adaptation). Excited because Eggers has a real quiet realism to his style and because it’s interesting to see how Jonze would do wihtout the help of Charlie Kaufman.
    3. The trailer knocked my socks off. ‘Wake Up’ is such a cathartic anthem for our generation (which, unfortunately judging from this website, is made up of trendhoppers who try to reinvent themselves for the sake of not falling into being uncool). I’m happy to hear that ‘Funeral’ inspired the themes of the film, and I can totally see it.
    4. I liked the movie a lot more than I thought I would. It was beautiful both aesthetically and thematically. At this point, a semiotic/thematic/cinematic analysis would be moot, as cultural identity through premeditative likes/dislikes seem to take precedent over debate.
    5. Can someone please superimpose Chewie in the last scene on the beach? That would be super.

  47. Miley Cyprus Hill  |   Posted on Oct 22nd, 2009 0

    WHere the Wild Things are, definitely not in Canada, eh?

  48. I think it looks really good. The trailer nearly made me cry the first time i saw it. Don’t know why. Just hit some cord. I love The Arcade Fire. I like Spike Jonze films. I don’t really get why all the blah about it. If you don’t like it, don’t see it.

  49. Jane  |   Posted on Oct 22nd, 2009 0

    I find the outrage over hipster comments a bit misplaced. Where else are they supposed to hang out if not a music website? Be glad their spewing their elitist dribble here instead of in the real world (though I’m sure many do both).

    Don’t like a movie? Don’t watch it. Don’t like a douchey hipster comment? Don’t read it. Elitists are entitled to their opinion as well. Besides, they give the rest of us something to mock. There will always be those who whine about one thing or another to prove their intellectual/emotional “superiority” and that’s OK. It helps the rest of us know who to avoid.

    For the record, I saw the film and thought it was faithful to the book, which is difficult for a ten page picture book without a large plot. I have my complaints about it, and though I am emotionally attached to the book, it didn’t make me cry. It’s not a kids’ film, but it’s not necessarily a film a kid couldn’t enjoy. But overall, I can’t imagine how, specifically, it could have been much better.

    Also, I love the soundtrack. Arcade Fire is a good band, but the way the soundtrack incorporated kids’ voices and various themes of the movie works really well. I was surprised “Wake Up” wasn’t in it or the movie, as it would have fit in perfectly as well.

  50. adrienne  |   Posted on Oct 23rd, 2009 0

    That’s no surprise. The movie felt like a funeral.

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