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Saturday, July 05, 2008

Wall-E

Congratulations, Pixar, on your ninth consecutive successful movie! Walt Disney Studios never even had that kind of run in its golden age.

Wall-E is a fantastic movie. The best they've done since The Incredibles. The story is incredibly simple: a robot left behind on Earth to clean up our mess, spends his free time collecting odd trinkets of humanity and watching Hello Dolly on his video iPod. One day a brand new sleek & sexy robot (EVE) shows up, Wall-E is smitten and adventure ensues.

The first half of Wall-E is a brilliant silent movie. There is a tremendous amount of story and characterization conveyed without any dialogue. Wall-E is endearing from the very first moment you see him, and only becomes more so as the film progresses.

It's almost a disappointment when the story takes Wall-E into space. If the movie had solely been about Wall-E's isolation, and then his reaction to a new friend, that would have been enough for me. Those scenes were so well done.

But the movie actually does develop a plot about EVE's mission to discover plant life on Earth, and what happens when the remains of humanity (Pixar's vision of our future is not pretty) decide to return to a home they left over 700 years before.

The animation is amazing as usual. There are some breathtaking settings, from Earth's towers of compressed trash cubes (Wall-E's legacy) to the reaches of outer space. The character animation is arguably better in this movie than any they've done yet, but it would have to be since all of the main characters can only interact through body language. The soundtrack is one of Thomas Newman's best scores, and as a bonus, contains a brand new song by Peter Gabriel (glee!).

Also worth mentioning is the new Pixar short animation shown before the movie. Presto is part Pixar, part Looney Tunes. It's about a magician trying to perform, and being upstaged by his rabbit who just wants a carrot. The rabbit thwarts the magician with the use of two magic hats. They act as portals to each other, which leads to a series of very original and hilarious gags. It's my favorite Pixar short since Geri's Game, which played in front of A Bug's Life.

2 comments:

Sarah said...

I saw this at the drive in (followed by the Hulk in an awesome double feature.) Wall-E is so endearing I love him! I agree with your assessment that thefirst half is brilliant, I was almost more intrigued with how Wall-E came to be, seemingly, the only one left.

I also like the scenes in the credits where they progress stylistically through the history of art.

Scott said...

Agreed. The credits sequence was very nice.