Sunday, March 22, 2009

Wall-E

Wall-E. Those bastards at Disney got me. They managed to make me emotionally attached to a character that doesn't really speak and is sort of alive. That's also a nice debate, what classifies something as alive? I would debate my frosh year roommate on fire being a living thing or not monthly, so I know robots, if they achieved sentience, could be alive. Wall-E is in the R2D2 vein of robots in movies where he's a small robot limited in his communication, and he has all the wonderful humanoid personality traits you'd want in a sidekick or pet dog. Who wouldn't want a Wall-E at their house just to hang out with, watch a movie with, play some frisbee or cards with? Wall-E sells this movie. They gave him a normal joe job and enough human characteristics, that we could feel a bit worried when he was close to 'death'. Of course, when you're a robot with replaceable parts, you can't really 'die'. Disney even takes a crack at that at the end.

In the aftermath of parents rolling their eyes at the environmental cramdown message in Happy Feet, Wall-E has an enviro message, but a much lighter one. There's a nice message that technology is there and wonderful, but you can make it work for you. It just requires your input and guidance. I loved the quasi-Blue Man Group way that Wall-E would treat certain items that we may assign no value to, but he found fascinating. My wife and I chuckled at Wall-E discarding a diamond ring to keep the clamshell box that it came in. There is also that "last man on Earth" element to the story, yet it is a robot doing it's programmed job.

Sure Wall-E's design is a rip off of Number 5 from "Short Circuit". They just shrunk him down, and made him childlike in many qualities. For one brief moment, I thought Disney might kill him off to show children that sometimes huge sacrifices are made for the good of everyone. Then I said, no no no, this is a Disney movie. No f-ing way. They must keep him alive for any potential direct to DVD sequel. Wall-E, in this world of terrible, modern Disney creations, you are awesome.

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