Archive for July, 2008

Pixar’s Wall E will be a film, in time to come, looked at like Murnau’s Sunrise. A film marking the medium at a definitive peak before transitioning into what it will become next.

In many ways the filmmakers hint at this. The 2001 references are there for those who know them, but more pointedly Pixar is presenting their star baby.  It’s a wonderful, thrilling moment that many didn’t see coming; they’ll marvel as the film grows in stature as the decades pass.  The opening dystopian sequence, and Wall E‘s ride into space, will stay in the memories of those who watch for years.

One can see when Animation’s theme sombers and when the visuals begin to overwhelm the story that they’re wading in treacherous waters for live-action filmmakers. There’s an eerie feeling seeing real footage in Wall E, as if it’s the gimmick now.

There’s a debate that questions whether authentically-realistic animation can or will overtake live-action film in years to come.  Wall-E shows this discussion is worthwhile.  Roger Deakins’ participation in supervising the lensing of the film should definitely raise an eyebrow or both.  (Joel & Ethan?)

In a sense the filmmakers threw everything in the pot here, like Allen did in Annie Hall. Leaving people to marvel at all the wonderful things bubbling slightly below the surface.  But Pixar, as smart as they are, moves forward while looking backwards. The fact that silent comedies play an integral part of the construction (staging, acting techniques, & gimmicks) is a two-folded comment.  We must remember that Malick while creating his new language in cinema also stopped to watch Chaplin’s The Immigrant in Days of Heaven.  That film also owing much to the poetic language of silent cinema.

If anything Wall-E shows that, at this moment, to make a masterpiece in Hollywood means you must go through Kubrick.  PT Anderson seems to have understood this as well.

I commend Pixar’s achievement and look eagerly for more.


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