Saturday, June 16, 2018

MOVIES: Pixar moving rankings

So in honor of Incredibles 2 (which we hope to see tomorrow), Vox ranked all 20 Pixar movies to date. You can find their list HERE. However, I strongly disagree with some of their rankings, so here are mine (minus the ones I haven't seen yet, sorry)

1) Toy Story - the animation may look a bit dated, but the story is so good, the voice acting amazing, the character designs incredible, the set pieces amazing, just on and on with its sheer awesomeness. This has to be the best.

2) The Incredibles - so close to being the best, as it is brilliantly animated, plotted, acted, etc... the voice casting is amazing all around, the plot winning and well structured, every character memorable but part of a cohesive story that blends action and truly real family dynamics. A classic.

3) Monster's Inc. - what's not to love about Mike, Sully and Boo? So inventive, cute, well acted, well animated, totally holds up to rewatching.

4) Brave - I might be in the minority for how much I enjoyed this, but it's totally re-watchable, the animation brilliant (I could stare at her hair all day - yes, yes, I know I have a thing for red-heads, but seriously, the physics of animating those curls! wow). The mother/daughter story is crucial, the real stakes that are at play. There is some great humor and strong set pieces. This is a complete movie even if it doesn't quite rank against the top three which are all perfect.

5) Finding Nemo - I really struggled with having this fifth and not fourth, but I thought about which one I would watch more often, and Brave won out on that. But the story is heartwarming, there is some great comedy, and some beautiful animation. Somehow though, it just didn't have the staying power for me.

6) Toy Story 2 - The traffic cone scene. Every time I think about whether I really liked or just kinda liked this one, that's what I think of.

7) Wall-E - Beautiful animation, creative story, wonderful choreography, but not really re-watchable in the same way as the top ones. I love EVE's design both physically and the sound design. There's a lot to like here and a lot to be technically impressed by, but somehow it doesn't really live for me.

8) A Bug's Life - A really underrated movie. It holds up to repeated viewings. Sadly, the colors are strangely washed-out, and the plot pretty simple, but there is something really winning about this movie, even if its only for the memories of watching it with some friends on a small TV in the dorm.

9) UP - The first half is brilliant, the second half sorta drags for me. Love the talking dogs, love the kid, love the old man, hate the bird.

10) Inside Out - Didn't like this nearly as much as you (or the rest of the world did). I thought it was mostly garishly animated, nonsensical psychobabble, and had a chance to do some really great things with the humans who were chronically neglected. If it had been just about the human characters, it would have been much more daring for an American animated movie - moving into her head, while on the surface seeming like it was a novel thing, actually ruined any chance of intimate emotional connection for me. In some ways, it also felt like a poor knock-off of Wreck-It Ralph. I know you're saying, "WHAT? are you nuts? They aren't anything alike." Not in plot certainly, but in set designs and animation, there are some surprising overlaps and this one didn't do it for me.

11) Cars - Can't argue with it's staying power or the uniqueness of its character designs the first time you saw it. Some great humor and a pretty important plot for the young ones. Really not a bad movie by any stretch.

12) Ratatouille - I'm one of those who really was underwhelmed by this movie. I also don't like thinking about rodents in commercial kitchens. Just didn't really like the character designs, the set pieces, the plot, etc...just meh.

13) Monster's University - I sort of wish I hadn't seen it since I loved Monster's Inc. so much. Not that it was bad, but it was missing everything that made the original special and tender.

14) Toy Story 3 - I HATED this movie no matter how many other people liked it. First, I acknowledge that they lost all the digital infrastructure from the original two and so had to completely recreate the character models, and while they did a decent job, it just felt off. The colors are harsh and super saturated throughout, the plot is dark and not redeeming, the humor mostly missing, the sweetness gone, just a tragic end to the series. The only reason I hope for a Toy Story 4 is to bring it back to the joys of playing with toys, not pathos and evil.

15) Cars 2 - I unfortunately saw this in 3D, one of the only movies I've ever seen in 3D and I'm not a fan (of 3D or this movie). The only reason it isn't last on my list is because The Good Dinosaur was such as a waste of money, time, and the resources devoted to creating it.

16) Good Dinosaur - how could this script have been green-lit? It's empty, hollow, and devoid of anything Pixar or Disney would ever do for a theatrically released feature film. If it had been a direct to DVD by some 3rd rate company it still would have been terrible, but that Pixar thought this should ever see the light of day is a direct insult to every Pixar staff person that worked on any of the other films. AND....AND DINOSAURS AND PEOPLE DID NOT COEXIST and even though they created an alternate universe to make the movie work any time we give biblical literalists and flat earthers anything in the media that even smacks of their beliefs the tiniest bit, it does more harm than good by reinforcing their unscientific world-view. Shame on you Pixar for this movie. For Shame!

Ones I haven't seen and so couldn't rate:
Incredibles 2 (hope to see this soon!)
Finding Dory
Cars 3 (really, they made this? I guess everyone's gotta eat...)

What's your list look like?


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Remember: please talk about the work, and offer counter points to others' analyses but DO NOT ATTACK THE PERSON whose analysis you are countering. (no ad hominem comments) Thanks! <3