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Peter T Chattaway

Wall-E

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Okay... the early returns are in, and my first impression was correct: I am in the vast minority on this one, and that with a "good but not great" opinion.

The stupid junket made me think that I wasn't an alien. Ah, well.

Party on!

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Okay... the early returns are in, and my first impression was correct: I am in the vast minority on this one, and that with a "good but not great" opinion.

However, some smart people agree with you, like Frank Swietek. :)

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Jeffrey Wells' prejudices have been uttered with wild abandon recently, so I guess his latest swipe shouldn't come as a surprise. I note it here because, well, I admit it: I agree. Or have agreed, in the past, when it comes to how other people have evaluated certain films that I love deeply.

That's what Wells does -- expresses crude opinions that he knows others adhere to. Sometimes it comes off all wrong, and let's face it -- not as many people agree with him as he thinks, and his presumption is what's offensive. So are his actual thoughts sometimes.

But I'm pot callin' the kettle black when it comes to what he's written today:

Of course, not everyone is going to understand how good this film is. A woman who saw it with me said to a young publicist on the way out, "It's nice but I was bored." So beware -- some are going to say it's not...whatever, snappily entertaining enough according to current popcorn-munching standards. Anyone who says this, trust me, is a plebe and a moron in terms of their cinematic taste buds.

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Here's The Hollywood Reporter:

'WALL-E' bow kicks off Oscar season

With Pixar's newest blue-chip animated movie "WALL-E" hitting theaters Friday, the 2008 Oscar race is finally off and running. ...

The critics are just beginning to weigh in on "WALL-E" -- the Village Voice's Robert Wilonsky has already called it "both breathtakingly majestic and heartbreakingly intimate" -- but the buzz surrounding the film about a lovelorn robot already is so heady, there's no doubt it will be the movie to beat for best animated film. The bigger question is whether it might become a candidate for a best picture slot.

At one point last year, director Brad Bird wanted to position his "Ratatouille" in the best picture heat, but he was convinced to focus on the best animated film category, which it handily won while also picking up noms in four other categories.

But if today's moviegoers warm to "WALL-E" the way an earlier generation embraced "E.T. the Extra-Terrestial," then the latest Pixar effort could find itself contending with the big boys for best picture.

In any event, the photo-real, computer-animated "WALL-E" should dominate the animation arena, which given the number of films expected to be released this year should yield three Oscar nominees.

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"In any event, the photo-real, computer-animated "WALL-E" should dominate the animation arena, which given the number of films expected to be released this year should yield three Oscar nominees."

I don't know. Madagascar 2: Escape 2 Africa could pull an upset.

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Josh Hurst wrote:

: And it is absolutely not a political movie, no matter how hard a small faction of political bloggers might try to pin it as one. Yes, it has a message about the environment

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I don't know. Madagascar 2: Escape 2 Africa could pull an upset.

Well, there is a Miyazaki release this year... http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0876563/

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Weird. I have re-pasted the link several times, but it's not working from here.

Just go to lookingcloser.wordpress.com, and you'll find it.

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Nice interview Jeffrey, and thats really cool that Stanton had read Through a Screen Darkly. I'll see this tomorrow night, no doubt in a packed theater full of screaming children. Hopefully Wall-E will be transporting enough to quiet them down for a couple of hours.

Well, there is a Miyazaki release this year... http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0876563/

I had not heard that, and I hope it does indeed come out this year. Oh man, I'm not sure I can take a Pixar release and a Miyazaki movie in one year. It might be too much.

Also Madagascar 2!!! Truly I am blessed.

Edited by Wilson Smith

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New Miyazaki? :-D!

And I get to see Wall-E on Saturday. Anxiously looking forward to it. I think I'm going to have to reread all of this and comment more after I get to see the movie. Still. Pixar in space!

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Overstreet wrote:

: Stanton's "five most important movies" list.

Woo-hoo, he and I have the same #1 film of all time.

And based on his #2 pick, I'd say he likes Peter O'Toole. (Hmmm, too bad that OTHER Pixar movie got O'Toole. But I'm sure Stanton made a point of meeting him while the man was in the building.)

I haven't seen #3 or #5. But I HAVE seen the film that Stanton says he HASN'T seen, so.

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Nikki Finke, who must always be taken with a grain of salt:

I'm told that Disney and Pixar are going to push hard for a Best Picture Oscar nomination for Wall-E on the basis of its anti-toon moody darkness and rave reviews by critics who matter. Certainly many toons have tried for that high honor over the years, and then settled for "just" a recently added Best Animated Feature nod. Only one animated movie has made it into the most competitive Academy Award category -- Disney's Beauty And The Beast in 1991 -- but, alas, didn't win. But that may not be the obstacle in Wall-E's way. No, I'm hearing the problem may be Andrew Stanton's arrogance in that interview in last Sunday's New York Times:

"Stanton, who wrote and directed the film, doesn

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Stanton certainly DOES care what the audience thinks. What he is saying is that the doesn't make films thinking about the audience, he makes films thinking about the film. If he makes it a good film, then he believes that the audience will like it.

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Lou Lumenick:

"The Most Fun You'll Have At the Movies This Summer!'' screams the pull-quote on top of a two-page color ad (the first one for a flick this year, I believe) for "WALL-E" in today's New York Times. But it isn't really a pull quote. "WALL-E'' is perhaps the best reviewed mainstream movie of the year so far, with many calling it a masterpiece. Reviews are running 98 percent positive at Rotten Tomatoes; Metacritic, which averages reviews from a more select group of reviewers on a 1-to-100 scale, rates it 91 ("universal acclaim''). So why didn't Disney quote any of the effusive reviews calling it Pixar's best ever and one of the best, if not the best movie of the year so far? The key word in the pseudo-quote Disney used is "fun,'' which is what Disney is emphasizing while desperately trying to hide the dark side of "WALL-E,'' which has drawn much critical praise, apparently because the studio thinks it will hurt business. Notice in my video review of "WALL-E'' above, that Disney has provided no footage of the disturbing futuristic images I describe.

Looks like Greg was wright, er, right. A rating of 91 isn't really as hot as the 96 that Ratatouille got, is it. ;) (It is, however, tied with the original Toy Story and ahead of all the other Pixar films. At this point.)

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Frederica Mathewes-Green:

I can just tell that this is going to be one of those reviews where the hardest part is coming up with the first sentence. What's the main thing to say about WALL-E, the latest offering from that most excellent animation studio, Pixar? That it's surprisingly, delicately, effectively, poignant? That, for that reason, younger children may not quite get it? That the Wall-E character is genuinely charming, and his originality has not been siphoned off by ET or Short Circuit's Johnny 5? That the film succeeds in making an ecological statement without being annoying? That, despite all those worthy elements, there's just something missing -- a plot, perhaps?

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Looks like Greg was wright, er, right. A rating of 91 isn't really as hot as the 96 that Ratatouille got, is it. ;) (It is, however, tied with the original Toy Story and ahead of all the other Pixar films. At this point.)

A lot depends on which metric you use. RT has an average rating of Wall

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When I get around to writing my review, my main criticism will be that WALL-E himself gets rather lost in the hustle and bustle of the film's closing act, and his climactic heroics are rather, well... unremarkable... more "mechanical" than inspired.

So I don't think the film is flawless. It's just that its highs are so glorious that the lows become little more than footnotes.

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When I get around to writing my review, my main criticism will be that WALL-E himself gets rather lost in the hustle and bustle of the film's closing act, and his climactic heroics are rather, well... unremarkable... more "mechanical" than inspired.

So I don't think the film is flawless. It's just that its highs are so glorious that the lows become little more than footnotes.

I actually liked that about the film, believe it or not, because it seems like it's not just about Wall-E-- it's about Wall-E AND Eve, together. I saw it mostly as a movie about love in the midst of chaos, not a film about one single hero.

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