Tell Them Anything You Want: A Portrait of Maurice Sendak

A wonderful short documentary about an artist in his old age.

Maurice Sendak wrote and illustrated Where the Wild Things Are.

At two years old, he was traumatised by seeing a picture of a baby on a newspaper stand; a picture of the tragic death of the child in the Lindbergh kidnapping. When his parents went back to see what trauma Maurice had seen, there was no picture on newspaper to be seen.

This event stuck with Maurice for all his life, leading him to read every book he could find on the kidnapping, and write a book inspired by it—Outside Over There.

Towards the end of his life, and the last stories he’ll ever write, Maurice is thinking about death.

Maurice doesn’t want to quote William Turner:

Is this…is this it? I worked so hard. Is this it?

Maurice wants more:

I’m trying very hard to concentrate on what is here, what I can see, what I can smell, what I can feel; making that the important business of life.