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June 30, 2008

"WALL-E:" Charming in its simplicit-E

by Katie Sint, Online Managing Editor
Leave it to Disney to make a cold metal robot seem warm and lovable.

The newest addition to the long line of adored Disney-Pixar film characters, including Marlin, an overprotective clownfish and Remy, a rat with enviable culinary talent, is Wall-E, a robot who's heart of gold outshines his rusty metal exterior. "WALL-E" is a fascinating little movie with a moral that reaches out to people of all ages.

WALL-E

(released June 27, 2008)
Chips Rating:
4 stars
G
User Rating:
5 stars Votes: 14
Wall-E (voiced by Ben Burtt) travels through space and accidentally ends up on an adventure to save planet Earth. Photo courtesy of Walt Disney pictures.


The computer-animated movie begins with its title character Wall-E (which stands for Waste Allocation Load Lifter- Earth-Class) and his cockroach companion as they work as the final two living remnants on a deserted Earth, compacting trash and collecting knick-knacks. One day, Wall-E (voiced by Ben Burtt) befriends Eve (Elissa Knight), a sophisticated robot, who is sent to Earth in search of life forms. When Eve realizes that Wall-E has found a small growing plant, she quickly returns to space to inform the humans who have been waiting to return home from their spaceship Axiom for 700 years. Wall-E devastatingly follows Eve across the Milky Way and forms a valiant team out of other malfunctioning robot companions on his way to inadvertently save planet Earth.

It's in many ways a typical Disney-Pixar movie, filled with moral challenges, extreme acts of courage and a character who is not only heartwarming but an unexpected hero. A few things, however, set "Wall-E" apart from its predecessors. For one, the story spurs more thought and individual contemplation than recent films, since Wall-E and almost all of his robotic friends are silent, aside from a few monosyllabic words at a time.

Also surprisingly for a children's movie, "Wall-E" is packed with less-than-subtle morals and warnings representing some of today's biggest societal issues. The film addresses the concern of obesity, as all the humans aboard the ship rely solely on robots for every aspect of life and seldom move. It also addresses the growth of technology in human life. In the film, the human characters rarely interact with each other and ironically have less heart than the tin and metal robots who serve them.

Following suit with one of today's major movements, "Wall-E" offers a somewhat outlandish consequence for not "going green." Earth becomes a deserted wasteland and the moral is clear: it's our responsibility to fix it.

Similar to the fable-like morals of the movie, the computer graphics are also outstanding in "Wall-E." From the dusty and gritty surfaces of the Earth to the vibrant and bright scenes aboard the Axiom, CG fans will not be disappointed.

Unfortunately, "Wall-E" was not without its faults. The film had a very slow start and continued for more than 20 minutes of just beeps and buzzes. At times, scenes seemed to drag and included interactions that did not serve to enhance the overall plot or effects.

That being said, "Wall-E" was an overall exciting and sweet movie, but the strongest aspect of the film was its simplicity. With so many recent films that try too hard to establish meaningful and unrealistic dialogue and characters, "Wall-E" stands out with its meaningful silence.

"Wall-E" provides a great viewing experience and will undoubtedly boost its humble title character into the high ranks of other beloved Disney-Pixar characters.

"Wall-E" (97 minutes) is rated G. Now playing everywhere.



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  • pixar movies rock on July 1, 2008 at 8:24 PM
    cute title
  • Nanette Nunu (View Email) on July 2, 2008 at 2:54 PM
    Oh my this article was so good!!! You are fantastic writer!!!!
  • af on July 4, 2008 at 9:18 AM
    I thought the beginning, while slow, was fine, because it established the characters, was funny, and did not have any of the cliches that make today's cg movies so bad.
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