2009 Animated Film To Win A Oscar For Best Picture Review of Monsters University, a Pixar Animated Film Directed By Dan Scanlon

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Review of Monsters University, a Pixar Animated Film Directed By Dan Scanlon

A timid clownfish who travels hundreds of miles in search of his son and an amnesiac royal blue tang who guides him. A mouse who can cook teams up with the illegitimate son of a prestigious chef who can’t. A garbage compactor robot on Earth who falls in love with an advanced robot visiting from space to inspect for signs of life. A grumpy retired widower who flies off with his entire house in Paradise Falls and a cheerful little boy scout who is accidentally taken with him. These are some of the unique pairings that have miraculously led Pixar Animated Studios to Oscar glory. Now consider this: a little green monster who knows all the ways to scare but can’t actually scare anyone, and his powerful college friend who can scare someone to death but is a horse small with a trick. Does this Pixar pairing seem unique enough to stand up to its predecessors? No really…

That’s the number one problem Pixar’s latest Monsters University venture has to overcome. Problem number two: the movie is a prequel. Pixar is hardly known for making prequels or sequels; his only super successful franchise is the Toy Story Series, which started in 1995 and has continued with two hugely acclaimed sequels, the third part being nominated for the prestigious Best Picture at the Oscars. The other well-known franchise is Cars, whose sequel Cars 2 barely scored among critics (I loved both movies, though).

This seems to be the decade of Pixar sequels; on the one hand, Monsters University comes ten years after the brilliant Monsters Inc, while on the other hand, the Pixar classic Finding Nemo continues its legacy with Finding Dory, which will be released in two years. Sequels or prequels equal familiarity and we always expect Pixar to give us something new and original. No one worries when rival studio Dreamworks clings to its green Shrek contraption to cash in, but we’ve come to expect much bigger things from Pixar, so the thought of seeing its memorable characters do another act worries us. because we’ve seen the best already.

Problem number three: this movie takes place in a college. What’s wrong with that you ask? American Pie was set in college and it worked. But keep in mind why American Pie worked: It was an R-rated comedy about the three-letter word with many four-letter words used in their three-letter context. Monsters University is rated G, and the comedy includes watching the lunch lady serve trash to the students, while the freshers are given a totally positive view during a Monsters University orientation run by an overjoyed girl. There are jock monsters, geek monsters, blonde monsters, prep monsters and other monsters of various shapes, sizes and colors in this university led by a determined female dragon Dean. Oh so popular you’d think if these were actors instead of monsters, this movie would have been instantly forgotten.

Some of the names are also valid – the film’s protagonist Mike goes to ‘Frighton’ primary school as a child. It’s one meaning of the word ‘fear’, you know? Uhm… not so bright. Also, you’d be surprised during this movie if you find sequences that remind you of other movies. There is an ‘initiation ceremony’ that will take you straight to the Ring of Fire sequence from Finding Nemo. The very first part with the monster introductions seems similar to another animated film Hotel Transylvania, which though spent a lot of time showing one monster after another. Five problems or rather challenges already, and can Pixar manage to overcome them all? Yes, to a large extent yes.

I would probably use the word ‘shengo’ rather than skip here; Monsters University spends itself bringing back its magical post interval at Pixar. Until then, your eyes don’t open with the usual sense of wonder while watching Pixar movies. You want to be weird like the protagonist Mike when he enters Monsters University for the first time, but unfortunately you’re squinting instead. When you see his initial rivalry with Sullivan, you feel like you’ve seen it all before. Even when actress Helen Mirren channels her sister Miranda Priestley with Aloysius as Dean Hardscrabble, you still long for the Pixar cues again, feeling like you’re watching a Dreamworks movie that’s been mistakenly marketed as Pixar.

Over time, I coined the term ‘Pixar’s blot’ for this film because I found nothing positively surprising about the work. However, that term would not apply to this film at all, as the second part surprised me – in a big way.

The film wakes up and becomes quite special once the Pixar magic slowly fills up as the scare meter used by Monsters University students to record children’s fear levels. After Mike makes a bet with Dean Hardscrabble to keep him in the ‘Scare Program’ (he is suspended from it for causing chaos during their exam) if he stands as the winner of a college event called the ‘Scare Games’, he joins. with four other non-scary frat boys and his rival Sullivan, who is also suspended and joins their team Oozma Kappa only to return to the program; when the team prays to understand each other’s strengths and abilities, you begin to see the flickering light of Pixar you’ve been waiting for. There’s an unexpected surprise that I won’t divulge here, and ultimately the film’s broader themes seem to have the depth of Pixar’s previous efforts. The only problem at the end is the first part itself, which although seems necessary after watching the entire film, has no moments of Pixar spark. That little jumpy bulb you see every time his logo appears (he’s Luxor Jr., from an earlier short) was probably on low voltage until the interval. Thank God everything came out right after and burned brightly. But I was constantly worried that the little bulb would come out, and I don’t want to have that feeling again, not from Pixar.

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