Sunday, July 6, 2008

Movie Review: Wall-E

Abe, Dad, and I saw Wall-E last week. In short, it lived up to all the hype. Although somewhat...different at first (no dialogue, minimal characters, not much happening), it definitely got better. Wall-E and his pseudo-love interest EVE were incredibly animated, and the romantic moments they shared, dialogue-free as they were, were still incredibly touching.

I won't spoil the plot for you, but suffice to say that the humans depicted in the movie are almost scary. After a long time away from Earth in an enormous spaceship, they have grown used to moving around in hover-chairs and not interacting with the people around them. Their limbs have grown vestigial, and they are incredibly lazy. They are being ruled in an inoffensive way by the ship's computer, Otto, which is set on maintaining the status quo of comfortable boredom for the humans.

There are blatant overtones to Stanley Kubrick's incredibly well-made but exceedingly creepy and (to me) unenjoyable 1968 sci-fi movie "2001: A Space Odyssey." Wall-E's soundtrack even mimics 2001's minimalist, horn-centric style. Although less biting than Kubrick's movie, Wall-E still has an aura of actually making a statement--a first in a Pixar film. Previously, they have been very enjoyable but in the end largely meaningless children's movies. With Wall-E, Pixar has grown up. Older children, and even teenagers such as myself (although I've always been fascinated by Pixar--I was just at the right age when "Toy Story" came out. I was the original audience), will enjoy it more than younger children, simply because they will be able to understand it better. Anyone who has seen 2001, however, and thought it creepy as I did, might see a little too much of that in Wall-E.

Wall-E, the precocious and outmoded packrat garbage robot, the last of his kind on Earth, still cleaning up the junk after seven hundred years, is the most lovable Pixar character since...since forever. My favorite Pixar movie remains "The Incredibles," but I have to say that Wall-E is a better character by far than any in that movie.

On a wider scale, Conservative critics--namely Frederica Matthewes-Greene, have faulted the movie for its environmental message, but Rod Dreher on his blog, Crunchy Con (my favorite Conservative blog of all time), thinks that it is Aristotlean and even Conservative.

I have to say, I think he's right. If not Conservative, it's certainly traditionalistic. And that, for a Hollywood movie, is quite a departure. Pixar truly breaks the Hollywood stigma.

Synopsis: Watch it!


sweetggirl said...

I shall TRY to see it....although I highly doubt I'll get over the whole "no-dialogue" stuff.:p

Britannia said...

Interesting to know.