MOVIE CORNER

June 30, 2008

9. Wall-E – $3.1M

Filed under: Box Office Stats — movie_critic @ 3:06 am

Even for Pixar, this might be a first: an animated film that contains not only a fully realized world as photorealistic as it is full of wonder, but also the Gargantuan themes and visuals of 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY, the stripped-down sad-clown pathos found in classic Buster Keaton comedies, and one of the most moving and simply unique love stories in a long time. Director Andrew Stanton kicked up the visual acuity of an already-stellar Pixar Animation Studios in 2003 with a reflective, refractive, color-shimmery realization of the oceanic world of FINDING NEMO, which genuinely felt as though it spanned the entire earth. With WALL-E, Stanton replaces an apprehensively fishy estranged journeyer with a love-struck and curious robotic one, allowing the quest for eternal love to expand from a desolate, dust-covered, palpably polluted future Earth and into an even more mysterious abyss: the far reaches of outer space.<br><br>With virtually no dialogue, WALL-E’s neatly contained vaudevillian first act eerily and tragically introduces the robot of the title as the last living thing on Earth (aside from a little cockroach friend) amidst dilapidated skyscrapers and equally tall compacted trash heaps. WALL-E has developed a tender and inquisitive personality doing what he was built to do day in and day out for the past 700 years–allocate and dispose of human waste–simply because no one turned him off when the human race left the hostile polluted planet. When the directive-oriented Eve robot comes crashing into his life from above, WALL-E immediately becomes infatuated with her, and is willing to follow her to back into dangerous outer space, where two robots gliding through the ether, dancing via fire-extinguisher propulsion, are among the many memorable and grandly romantic moments of an expansively beautiful, deceptively simple story.

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