Monday, July 07, 2008

What did you think of ‘Wall-E?’

There are so many reasons to see "Wall-E" if you haven't already. I'll list four.
  1. Yet again, Pixar has proved that its animation is light years ahead of its admirers. Why? After two minutes, you won't realize that "Wall-E" is a complete fabrication. Everything about this little robot – from his rusted, aching trash-compactor torso to his mechanically emotive eyes – is fake yet utterly convincing. The fluidity and textural detail of Pixar's animation – "Ratatouille" was its equal last year – represent an advancement in filmmaking that is as important as the advent of the talkies. Hardly my insight, but reason to see "Wall-E" nonetheless.
  2. It's a G-rated post-apocalyptic film that perfectly illustrates a paradox of our consumer-driven, creativity-addicted culture. No critic explains this better than A.O. Scott of The New York Times. "(T)he genius of 'Wall-E' … lies in its notion that creativity and self-destruction are sides of the same coin." Frank Rich even thinks the movie is smarter than our presidential candidates: "This movie seemed more realistically in touch with what troubles America this year than either the substance or the players of the political food fight beyond the multiplex's walls."
  3. It's a G-rated post-apocalyptic film that uses humor to provoke new thought. Wall-E – a robot left on an abandoned, destroyed Earth to clean up humanity's waste – could have easily been a downer. But he goes about his Sisyphean task like a motorized Buster Keaton or Charlie Chaplin. While constructing cityscapes out of garbage, he plays with or keeps the junk he finds fascinating. Lighters. Light bulbs. A paddle ball. A prized VHS of "Hello, Dolly!" A car alarm, which he presses and then hears the distant sound of a newly-armed car. Even a spork, for Colonel's sake, gets a laugh. And every time we do laugh, we learn to see these objects in less disposable ways. He even crept into my mind during my morning bicycle commute.
  4. Eve, Wall-E's robot flame, is hot. And armed.

Did you see the movie yet? Let me know what you think.

PHOTO: Pixar Animation Studios/Walt Disney Pictures.


Anonymous said...

I also liked the pointing out that cockroaches and Twinkies will survive us all,and if it was all possible, PIXAR made a cockroach almost cute and cuddly !

esd said...

I saw it and loved it. And EVERY member of our audience loved it. It was awesome to look around and see adults and children alike just staring in awe. That's the first "kid's" movie I've been to where you didn't notice the theater was full of kids. My friends brought their 3-year-old and he sat silently with his jaw hanging down to his lap (and to his shoes, since he stood up most of the movie) watching the amazing scenery go by.

Alexandyr Kent said...

anon, totally agree. I'm looking forward to Hostess' forthcoming Twinkroaches.

esd, had a slightly different experience. I think most were in awe, but I noticed one nearby kid playing with her mother's Blackberry during the second half. Once the supine humans appeared and were surfing the future-web for the next latest and greatest, I took it the kid just followed cue.

trudeau said...
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shanebevel said...

A truly beautiful film. Both in it's stunning aesthetics and in the story line and character development. One of my favorites of the year hands down.

patrick said...

Wall-E totally looks like the robot from "Short Circuit"... minus the cheesy 80's style of course

Anonymous said...