So I went to see Wall-E last week. I personally, was impressed. I have been reading several other blogs about this topic, and how they compare Wall-E to Kung Fu Panda, which most everyone comes to the conclusion that one cannot truly compare the two because they are conceptually different. I think that you will find a fair opinion of the movie if you go to Keith Lango’s site. He has a small post but then links to Tim Hodge’s page and he has a lengthy post about it and KFP. I think that these are fair opinions, but I disagree with Tim’s view.
I think that this is mainly because I did not look at the movie and think, “wow, the visuals have built up my expectation of this film and now I expect an epic.” In my mind, I went in looking to see how they built an entire story around two robots that barely utter any words. I will agree with one of the replies from Tim’s post that the adults were like large children, but for me this was the entertainment and the social commentary in the situation. Also, this made sense to me. I see us as humans constantly getting lazier as we develop more technology that either removes us from outdoor activities or makes it easier to do things without getting out of our chairs in front of the television. I think that some people are trying to combat this, but I have not seen too large of a change in the area where I live. I think being in a climate that has cold winters is a big reason for this. In this reply, the author states that the people were also a little disturbing. In my opinion, this appears intentional, so Pixar appears to have succeeded. I would think that this was the message, that we do not want this to be our future as humans, so we must do our part to counter this today. So now that I am finished commenting on other posts, I have a few things I would like to point out about the film.
I think Pixar did a great job with pantomime. This is something that we are working with now in my AM class. I think it had to be difficult to come up with ways to make Wall-E move like a robot but still have a human personality. They did a great job using his eyes and hands. There are many subtle movements that truly explain his thoughts and feelings at each moment.
One aspect specifically that I think worked very well was the hand holding. The way that the studio built up the importance of holding hands and what that meant to Wall-E over time was excellent. By the time it happened it was like watching a couple’s first kiss in live film. It took so long to accomplish that it held that much more meaning.
Another part of the movie that I thought was great for the character development of Wall-E was after EVE went into hibernation with the plant inside. The care and love that Wall-E displayed really meant something to me as a viewer. It was like watching a Father protect his wife and baby, or maybe even more like watching a mother bird protect her eggs.
Finally, although I could go on with other examples, I have to say I loved the, what I’ll call, dance-flight sequence with Wall-E and EVE. This scene was great. It did a great job showing the care that each character had for one another. It demonstrated their individual personalities as well by how the two propelled each other while at the same time staying somewhat in sync with each other. This incorporated quite a bit, making me laugh from Wall-E’s movements, smile because of the affection I felt for the two characters in their time of re-uniting, and also just allowed me to enjoy due to the appeal of the shot. For me, it was very much like watching a figure skating pair.
Anyhoo, I think that Pixar has a very successful film here, particularly as an animation. It remindeds me of Chuck Jones’s The Dot and the Line in its simplicity but great story-telling primarily through animation. I think that a lot of animation is delivered to us through dialogue, sometimes to the point where the animation is hardly even needed.
I will wrap up this large post by saying that I suggest that everyone take a look at this film. It was very entertaining and I believe that is due to the above, but also because a lot of themes the film deals with are adult topics, more than Pixar has dealt with before, in my opinion.