Obesity

Why Does Pixar Hate America?

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The real Bill Wyman—the journalist, not the Humbert Humbert Rolling Stones bassist—asks:

What if Pixar released a ferocious broadside attacking the American way of life and the movie reviewers didn't notice?…

If Michael Moore, or Oliver Stone, or, God forbid, some effete French director, had crafted a feature film that was a thinly disguised political broadside portraying Americans as recumbent tubbos who moved around on sliding barcaloungers with built-in video screens and soft drinks always at the ready, don't you think there'd be some sort of notice taken?

But Pixar does it and …

… the reviewers barely mention it. The new Pixar film, Wall-E, does indeed, as you have heard, tell the story of an adorable robot working alone on a depopulated earth. There's an obvious ecological lesson here, and this has been duly noted, along with mentions of unspecified "themes" and "messages."

But what was rarely analyzed in the reviews is that the earth is deserted because a Wal-Mart-like company called "Buy n' Large" has filled it up with trash, and the departed humans, expanded to Big Gulp size, are contentedly gorging themselves amid the comforts of a flying Club Med, where they slide around on those carts, on which they watch TV continuously without even having to sit up completely. While some of the better reviewers mention the beglotted humanoid forms, I found it odd that most mainstream reviewers didn't bother to point out what the film was saying.

More here, at Wyman's interesting Hitsville blog.

As someone who saw Wall-E the day after it opened, I've got a slightly different question: Why didn't reviewers say that the film sucks eggs? The goddamn thing, in my humble and useless opinion, was as bloated, slow-moving, and soft as the fat fucks populating the film like so many twins riding on motor scooters. It even somehow manages to misuse Fred Willard, who is every bit as much a national resource we desperately need to exploit as the ANWR oil reserves.

reason gives thumbs up to Pixar's Toy Story here; fat people here.

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  1. “What if Pixar released a ferocious broadside attacking the American way of life and the movie reviewers didn’t notice?”

    Fat people sitting around doing nothing sounds like the American dream to a lot of people. You’d have to be a smarmy communist to assume that portraying people’s idea of success is a “broadside.”

  2. “Why didn’t reviewers say that the film sucks eggs?”

    uhh, cuz its a Diznee film? Not a big fan of Disney in general. It seems that each and every film released under the impressive auspice of old Walt’s company gets lauded to high heaven no matter what. After all, Disney exists for the chil…never mind.

    could someone school me on the use of HTML tags on this forum (click my handle for e-mail). The tags I use on other boards don’t work here…

  3. like so many twins riding on motor scooters

    I remember that image from the Guiness Book of World Records. Oh yes, I remember it well. I saw it when I was very young, and it seared a permanent extra-wide space in my memory.

    *shudder*

  4. It even somehow manages to misuse Fred Willard

    Fernwood 2 Night!

  5. The Incredibles was awesome enough for me to buy the DVD
    I also happened to like Ratatouille quite a bit.

    I’ll probably rent Wal-E sometime.

  6. Warren, what you like are movies by Brad Bird, which Wall-E is not.

  7. Maybe Pixar had to give a nod to overconsumption after all those crypto-libertarian offerings they’ve made thus far.

  8. “Spacers who are too fat or weak to handle 1G” is an sf trope at least as old as Heinlein’s Waldo.

    Kevin

  9. I just read an interview with the screenwriter, who said it wasn’t his intention to make a green film, and was afraid it would be perceived as such. He was just trying to create a humorous situation.

    1. It’s actually meant to be irony because Pixar is a tech company. the film actully promotes self responsibility, and opposes technocracy. It’s also worth noting that the ship had a full complement of sports facilities that people were unaware of (probably because they were raised by robots)

  10. I think computer animated films were novel enough in the past several years to exept them critical analysis. This article is a sign that the novelty is wearing off. Come to think of it, Monsters Inc. echoed Al Gore’s positions. It told the story of brave electric company employees who fought big energy so they could replace a sarce outdated energy source (the screams of terror from small children) with a plentiful alternative energy (the laughter of joy from small children).

  11. Madbiker,

    Just google “htlm” or some variation.

  12. Me, I hated The Incredibles. But I’m more fond of Wall-E. I like the honest to goodness sci-fi theme, even if it’s a pretty common one. Which makes me wonder about some of the mostly conservative critiques of the movie. Have they never heard of science fiction? The theme of Wall-E has been a pretty common one since, well, science fiction came into existence.

    I kind of view Wall-E as a family oriented Idiocracy. Which is my biggest problem with it. As I watched the movie, I was hoping my alternative ending would pan out: Wall-E and Eva escape to Earth with the last plant, to live happily ever after on a planet that slowly recovers it’s greenery, while humanity lives happily ever after on the world it created.

  13. Wall – E was sort of a G rated ‘Idiocracy’, now that I think of it.

    Still, I was mesmerized by how good the graphics were.

  14. Episiarch,

    Well I’m also a big fan of Toy Story (TSII not so much), but yeah Brad is the man. The Iron Giant is worth a rental too. Add it to your netflix if you haven’t seen it. And of course Edna Mode is one of the most engaging characters ever to grace the big screen. I hope we get to see her again. She should star in her next movie.

    You are Elastigirl! My God! Pull yourself together! What
    will you do? Is this a question? Show him you remember that he is Mr.
    lncredible, and you will remind him who you are! Well, you know where he is.
    Go! Confront the problem! Fight! Win!…
    And call me when you get back, darling. I
    enjoy our visits.

    E

  15. If Michael Moore, or Oliver Stone, or, God forbid, some effete French director, had crafted a feature film that was a thinly disguised political broadside portraying Americans as recumbent tubbos who moved around on sliding barcaloungers with built-in video screens and soft drinks always at the ready, don’t you think there’d be some sort of notice taken?

    Maybe, but ONLY if the studio gets behind the film with an agitprop campaign. When Mike Judge did the same type of film (Idiocracy), the studio made sure no one noticed it. Then again, Moore and Stone aren’t known for thinly disguising ANYTHING. (Nor did Idiocracy.)

    Also, it’s a pet peeve of mine when professional writers misspell “prerogative.”

  16. My pixar top picks are The Incredibles (great music) and Monsters Inc. I enjoyed the other movies, but I just didn’t find Ratatouille or Cars all that engaging.
    I have yet to see Wall-E, though I suspect, from what I’ve heard, it’ll end up in the #3 spot.

  17. OT, but I had to link to this. It does make me proud to be American.

    On topic, Wall-E sounds good to me still. I plan to watch it when I get the chance. But I’m really, really waiting for The Dark Knight.

  18. ” And of course Edna Mode is one of the most engaging characters ever to grace the big screen.”

    And Bird even did her voice.

  19. “Why didn’t reviewers say that the film sucks eggs?”

    Because apparently that view is in the minority? Both fandango and rotten tomatoes rate the movie highly. But perhaps your ideological conflict with the movie colors your critique?

  20. I second the motion that Edna should have her own movie.

  21. I think Wyman is full of shit. I read three or four reviews of the movie and they all mentioned anti-consumer culture and environmental themes.

    MadBiker – Not every Disney movie gets good reviews. Cars, for instance, got quite a few bad mentions. Overall, though, Pixar movies get good reviews because they’re good movies, especially the Toy Stories and the Brad Bird flicks.

  22. I’ve come to appreciate Toy Story much more since I read this analysis. It just fits so well.

  23. Nick is just one of those libertarians who confuses political liberty with moral liberty.

    It is possible to think political liberty is good, while at the same time being morally contempuous of creatures like those depicted in the film.

    That means that it’s also possible to critique one particular possible sci-fi path of human development without “hating America”.

  24. uhh, cuz its a Diznee film? Not a big fan of Disney in general. It seems that each and every film released under the impressive auspice of old Walt’s company gets lauded to high heaven no matter what. After all, Disney exists for the chil…never mind.

    You are wrong, sir! Pixar is Pixar. The films are distributed by Disney, but Pixar makes its movies independently. Also, Disney has released many movies over the last twenty years that have been savaged by critics and audiences alike.

    The director of Wall-E has confounded many liberal critics with his insistence that he didn’t set out to make a movie with a message. He just wanted to make an entertaining love story.

    I think the only Pixar movie Nick would like would be their faithful remake of “Faster Pussycat! Kill! Kill!” Not that they’ve made it. But if they did, Nick might like that.

  25. And Fluffy wins one for the team.

  26. My pixar top picks are The Incredibles (great music) and Monsters Inc.

    I have to agree. I’ve seen both of them several times and I could sit through them again and again. There’s a genius and humanity and abundant goodwill in those pictures that one rarely encounters in other mainstream releases.

  27. I thought he just hated the movie. *shrug*

    Haven’t seen Wall-E but I have to give them points for not retreading the anthropomorphic talking animal trope. Plus sci-fi for the kids is a good thing.

  28. I thought Wall-E was quite good; not quite as good as The Incredibles, better than Cars, probably tied with Ratatouille.

    I’ve long been fascinated by the phenomenon of modern animated films (well, maybe mostly Pixar films) being consistently better than live-action films. My theory is that nothing fucks up a movie faster than having to cater to one of the current crop of “superstars”.

    No other shop even comes close to Pixar’s batting average for putting out good-to-great films. Even the Coen brothers have some stinkers in their catalog.

  29. No other shop even comes close to Pixar’s batting average for putting out good-to-great films. Even the Coen brothers have some stinkers in their catalog.

    Better even than Studio Ghibli?*

    *yes, probably.

  30. Didn’t see the movie, but having read the reviews, I get the impression the main point is that they’ve actually forgotten what the american spirit is: achieving high goals through hard work, discipline, creativity and courage – as opposed to endless pleasure-seeking. I can’t say I would be offended by a film that attacks a maximum-pleasure least-effort way of life – and I certainly wouldn’t interpret that as anti-american.

  31. You know what animation (especially Final Fantasy movie animation) would be good for? The Moon is a Harsh Mistress. I know Tim Minear of Firefly fame is working on it now and I am still wondering how he’s going to depict moon gravity levels in live-action. It’s so critical to the end of the book/going to Earth stuff that I don’t see how you would write it out using artificial gravity or some such.

  32. Its almost like Pixar has so totally whipped the competition in recent years that they are now just competing with themselves.

    Last year: “These other studios are so feeble that we can beat their asses with a movie about a rat in a restaurant.”

    This year: “Hell, the rat thing was a lay-down. This year, we’re going with a garbage compactor! And practically no dialogue.”

    And, again, it will be the best thing coming out of Hollywood.

  33. I’m also of the opinion that the Final Fantasy style animation would be perfect for finally doing Elric. Live-action could never do Stormbringer justice. Fuck, who even knows what a “black radiance” is? But I bet a good animator could figure it out.

  34. “Why didn’t reviewers say that the film sucks eggs?”

    Because apparently that view is in the minority? Both fandango and rotten tomatoes rate the movie highly.

    Ho man, you ain’t just whistling Opus #4 in C minor. RT give it 97% fresh rating with:
    Reviews Counted: 175 Fresh: 169 Rotten:6 Average Rating: 8.6/10

  35. And, again, it will be the best thing coming out of Hollywood.

    This is all that need be said!

    You can all stop commenting now!

  36. Tim Minear’s THE MOON IS A HARSH MISTRESS will not be made after all, but you can download a PDF of the script.

  37. Loved Wall-E, and unless you’re sitting there looking to be offended, I just didn’t find it to be ‘anti-American’ or anything like that.

    In some sense, it was the opposite… the film didn’t focus all that much energy on the big corporation. They mostly focused on the people that allowed things to get the way they did. I think Alan pretty much has the right idea (without seeing it even!).

    Quite frankly, this was mostly a love story, and a pretty good one if you ask me. The first half hour or so, barely a single word is spoken, but it’s incredibly powerful. Reminiscent of Castaway.

  38. recumbent tubbos who moved around on sliding barcaloungers with built-in video screens and soft drinks always at the ready

    Sign me up!

  39. The end of it was the best:

    “yes kids, you will be farmers for the rest of your lives, isn’t that exciting?”

  40. Didn’t see the movie, but having read the reviews, I get the impression the main point is that they’ve actually forgotten what the american spirit is: achieving high goals through hard work, discipline, creativity and courage – as opposed to endless pleasure-seeking.

    Which is why I think it a bit odd that various conservatives are down on the movie. This is the same theme from Idiocracy, which seemed to play better among that crowd (certainly got some plugs around here), despite being a mediocre movie, IMO.

    The whole phenomenon of arts criticism via political filter just rubs me the wrong way, I guess. I was wondering when the Eva character would be brought up as an example of some political agenda, being an egg-shaped robot, whose mission is to harbor life in it’s belly, pretty much at the cost of nearly everything around, even it’s own “feelings”.

  41. This is the same odious smugness that was “critical” of ‘The Golden Compass’ for putting forth a freedom-oriented secular worldview that portrayed Gawd as an evil Authority who roamed the earth as Big Snuff Artist.

    Face the facts, the world views Americans as Big Gulp obsessed, NASCAR loving, fat Christianoids with no regard to resource utilization or sustenance.

    Will Americans win again? Can a fat, F-150 loving Bushpig defy his uselessness forever?

    Who knows?

  42. Ratatouille was retarded. I don’t get why people liked it.

  43. The silly environmental back story in Wall-E was really just a device to set up what was a tremendously affecting and moving love story.

    If Gillespie thinks the movie sucked, he’s just reinforcing the stereotype that libertarians have shrunken hearts of stone.

  44. If Nick Gillespie doesn’t understand why those two robots in WALL-E make an adorable couple, it’s probably hopeless to try to explain it.

    The more I think about it, the more I like the movie’s use of Fred Willard. For maybe the first time in his career, he’s playing the straight man (rather than the outrageous pseudo-square) in the comedy. Only in a Pixar movie could that happen, and it’s impressive.

  45. a Wal-Mart-like company called “Buy n’ Large” has filled it up with trash, and the departed humans, expanded to Big Gulp size, are contentedly gorging themselves amid the comforts of a flying Club Med, where they slide around on those carts, on which they watch TV continuously without even having to sit up completely

    This is a bad thing…why? Seems to me that if humans are rich and successful enough to actually move off the whole frikkin’ Earth and adopt a fabulously rich lifestyle of leisure and gorging, then we must be doing something right. I never see this in any of Al Gore’s apocalyptic scare-scenarios.

  46. I loved the first half — an almost wordless art film about two robots in a bleak world. After they get to the Axiom, it becomes a more conventional kids’ movie.

    Sure, there’s a huge, obvious environmental message, but beyond that, it’s the story of a plucky little robot ignoring societal expectations, following its inner impulses, and shaking human society out of its collectivist rut into something new and exciting. I think it’s another crypto-libertarian movie, actually.

  47. I’ve long been fascinated by the phenomenon of modern animated films (well, maybe mostly Pixar films) being consistently better than live-action films. My theory is that nothing fucks up a movie faster than having to cater to one of the current crop of “superstars”.

    My guess is that someone high-up in Pixar has a sign on the wall that says “It’s the story stupid!”. For all their brilliance in animation, what they really excel at is telling stories that this middle-aged guy finds compelling.

    No other shop even comes close to Pixar’s batting average for putting out good-to-great films. Even the Coen brothers have some stinkers in their catalog.

    I thought Monsters, Inc was the weakeset of the bunch (it’s only an opinion ;-), but Pixar wipes the floor with every other studio on the planet.

    Its almost like Pixar has so totally whipped the competition in recent years that they are now just competing with themselves.

    Amen!

    Last year: “These other studios are so feeble that we can beat their asses with a movie about a rat in a restaurant.”

    This year: “Hell, the rat thing was a lay-down. This year, we’re going with a garbage compactor! And practically no dialogue.”

    Beautiful!

    And, again, it will be the best thing coming out of Hollywood.

    QMFT!

  48. This is the same odious smugness that was “critical” of ‘The Golden Compass’ for putting forth a freedom-oriented secular worldview that portrayed Gawd as an evil Authority who roamed the earth as Big Snuff Artist.

    Um…did you ever even read The Golden Compass? In that book, God is not portrayed *at all*, and when he is finally portrayed in The Amber Spyglass, far from being a evil snuff artist he is rather portrayed as a feeble, fragile, aging pathetic creature that is killed, I shit you not, by being exposed to a *breeze*.

    Now, I’ll grant you that in the book, he is used as a symbol and his power is usurped by an Angel who is a raging, evil snuff artist. But let’s try to get the details right for the kiddies, OK?

  49. Sure, there’s a huge, obvious environmental message…

    Since when did a tale about the evils of covering every square inch of the earth in refuse become environmental preaching and not simple common fucking sense? (This isn’t directed at DannyK, necessarily, but I see this trope appear a lot, especially when environmentalism and/or global warming comes up).

  50. QMFT!

    Proofed the whole post, then fucked up the acronym — I am such a loser 😉

  51. I think Nick is reading WAY too much into this. I took my nephew to see Wall-E, and it was a okay. I’m not a huge fan of animated films, but I generally think Pixar movies are pretty good.

  52. With regards to “The Golden Compass” post-
    The Dark Materials trilogy starts off pretty good, but becomes progressively more didactic as it continues.

  53. Proofed the whole post, then fucked up the acronym

    It’s damn near impossible to mess up an acronym. That one stands for “Quoted, man. For truth.”

  54. kinnath,
    I actually thought “Cars” was the weakest of the bunch.

  55. The only films on par with Pixar are the Wallace and Grommit shorts and Chicken Run.

  56. Um…did you ever even read The Golden Compass? In that book, God is not portrayed *at all*, and when he is finally portrayed in The Amber Spyglass, far from being a evil snuff artist he is rather portrayed as a feeble, fragile, aging pathetic creature that is killed, I shit you not, by being exposed to a *breeze*.

    Thanks, but I was referring strictly to the critical response of the ‘Golden Compass’ and the staged boycotts by the Christianoids.

    The subject matter of the trilogy is an entirely different matter – since the burning of books has long ago become a conservative lost cause.

    They are now reduced to lambasting Hollywood “secret codes” depicted in animated kiddy films.

  57. I find it fascinating that some people seem to think there is a room full of hippy left-wing writers at Pixar spending all their time coming up with ideas that will purposely tick off right wing reviewers instead of just writing a love story.

    “Lets make Willard say ‘stay the course’ because Bush is evil!”
    “Yea, yea – I’ll put that in. what else?!?!?”

    (seen wall*e twice – and Ratatouille at least a dozen times)

  58. kinnath,
    I actually thought “Cars” was the weakest of the bunch.

    Yup, Cars is down at the bottom of the list as well. But still, Monsters and Cars beat the shit out of 90% of mainstream Hollywood movies.

  59. wall-e did suck eggs, thank you for pointing that out. this was the jackson pollack of cgi, robots running around willy nilly with no purpose except for people to say “wow, what great cgi!” the love story consisted of two robots whining each other’s names over and over. the first half is boring for kids, the second half excruciating for adults.

    but the ideology is no better or worse than most flicks today. it hardly counts as anti-american, since the entire human race presumably contributes to the garbage crisis. and disney/pixar can wink at overconsumption and laugh all the way to the bank as we continue to overconsume the tripe they produce; they will never be so preachy that it will affect their revenue.

  60. film version – that is.

  61. I kind of view Wall-E as a family oriented Idiocracy

    That is exactly what I thought.

    I know it’s subjective and all, but no way does Wall*E suck eggs. Hell, I would put my film snob credentials up against anyones and I liked it fine.

    I thought of it as being kind of a Buster Keaton film in space; plus a bit of Idiocracy thrown in for yucks (and because it fit with the plot).

  62. Fuck, who even knows what a “black radiance” is?

    Seeing Obama in TV doesn’t really capture it. You’ve got to go to a live show.

  63. on TV

    I’m home sick, leave me alone.

  64. The only films on par with Pixar are the Wallace and Grommit shorts and Chicken Run.

    If there are finest animation studios in every country, clearly the UK has Aardman Animations like the US has Pixar and Japan has Studio Ghibli. They all produce really fine work.

  65. Someone up-thread did not like Cars? CARS? The one with The King, Richard Petty Cars? Larry the Cable guy AND Darryl Waltrip?

    This is a strange board sometimes.

    No, I have not yet seen the movie Cars, that I identified as the latest repackaging of Pinocchio as soon as I saw the first commercial. But at least this remake has cook people’s voices.

  66. I’m also a fan of Japan’s Studio Madhouse (Satoshi Kon).

  67. I dunno, my libertarian leanings liked the messages given to the kids:

    Don’t trust the government, they lie by omission.

    Just because you are fat and happy, doesn’t mean you’re free.

    Look past what you see in front of you, and you’ll see a system of controls.

    If you don’t pay attention, the world will fall into crap.

    Plus, the love story was beautiful. And a surprising lack of dialog, while still moving the story.

  68. Japan has Studio Ghibli.

    Haven’t seen their stuff. What is their specialty?

  69. DannyK has it.

    I would just add that Wall-E’s anti-consumerist message is tempered with the message that some objects (even ones bought at WalMart) can have meaning. And the environmental message doesn’t have even a trace of state-imposed fasting associated with it.

  70. Guy, you should see it then. It’s long and boring and not funny. Owen Wilson does not translate, that is, if you think he’s funny already.

  71. The Dark Materials trilogy starts off pretty good, but becomes progressively more didactic as it continues.

    Agreed. I really disliked most of Spyglass.

    Thanks, but I was referring strictly to the critical response of the ‘Golden Compass’ and the staged boycotts by the Christianoids.

    The subject matter of the trilogy is an entirely different matter – since the burning of books has long ago become a conservative lost cause.

    They are now reduced to lambasting Hollywood “secret codes” depicted in animated kiddy films.

    Fair ’nuff. As far as book burning, I think the moment at which the “Christianoids” as you put it (cute term, BTW) lost the book battle was when they foolishly tried to attack Harry Potter at the height of its popularity. They and their powerful moral faith were crushed like little bugs by that juggernaut.

  72. Putting aside parents and pedophiles, why do adults even go to movies like this? And why should we care about them?

  73. Go Fluffy!! Please remember that some ‘libertarians’ are still freshly awakened ‘conservatives’ that still have their moral umbilical cords intact. Nick would do well to mention that almost all sci-fi sends humanity into space to save it from a world destroyed by humanities own mismanagement. This is not un-American it is simply making a scenario that drives the story. And hoo-ah to all of the Heinlein mentions.
    To me the story in Wall-E was the most inspirational story of unconditional love I have ever seen. Wall-E and Eve were the core of the story and everything else was sci-fi fluff.

  74. SugarFree,

    What is the latest Sen. Obama flap? reason stopped posting about him last night after one of those people I don’t read generated a 111+ comment thread in a Dave Weigel post.

    Um, in my 2:22 post I meant “cool people” not cook.

  75. Better even than Studio Ghibli?*

    I finally saw Castle In The Sky with my daughter. Coincidentally, it also features sympathetic caretaker robots and a population that lives above the earth.

    Spirited Away is easily one of the most fascinating and bizarre kids movies ever made. Not quite as enjoyable as Pixar movies, but I have found that kids take to Ghibli stuff much more than one would think.

  76. Someone up-thread did not like Cars? CARS? The one with The King, Richard Petty Cars? Larry the Cable guy AND Darryl Waltrip?

    Cars seemed far more focused on personality and less on story than most Pixar films. Still a decent or better movie, just a little outside the quality expectation for a Pixar movie.

  77. Haven’t seen their stuff. What is their specialty?

    Lush fantasy. Princess Mononoke andSpirited Away are very nice.

  78. Henry, why do people see adult-oriented movies that have an equal amount–if not less–of intellectual stimulation? Pixar has proven to some kids and adults time and again that they can make entertaining movies. It’s the same way the Chronicles of Narnia or fairy tales are not just for children.

  79. Once again, Edna provides the appropriate commentary.

    Yes, words are useless. Gobble, gobble, gobble, gobble, gobble! Too much of it, darling. Too much! That is why I show you my work. That is why you are here.

  80. Princess Mononoke

    That I’ve seen, good movie. I just didn’t recognize the studio.

  81. just a little outside the quality expectation for a Pixar movie.

    I didn’t like cars but it turns out that that film has raked in some much money due to dvd sales and tie-ins that they are making a sequel. So apparently they hit their target audience right on.

  82. Not quite as enjoyable as Pixar movies

    For me, it depends what moods I’m in. Ghibli’s stuff is more ‘impressionistic’, partially because it tends to contain cultural references that I don’t get, while Pixar’s stuff is about as charming and clever as animation can be.

  83. The subject matter of the trilogy is an entirely different matter – since the burning of books has long ago become a conservative lost cause.

    Yea, that is what comes to mind whenever the works of Samuel Clemens are to be destroyed from libraries. Those evil Conservative activists trying to burn Huck Finn!

    Where is my Zippo . . .

  84. It’s the same way the Chronicles of Narnia or fairy tales are not just for children.

    Yeah. I thought ‘henry’ was gonna follow up with ‘comic books are for babies, why do you read those things.’ Yes, because it’s not content that makes art good, it’s the medium. (rolls eyes)

  85. My thoughts about WALL-E here.

    The passengers on the ship reminded me in no, um, small way of my cousins Tommy and Bernice who were, for fairly obvious reasons, childless.

    Which leads to a point about the film beyond which my disbelief is incapable of suspension; namely, where the hell did all the kiddies come from?

  86. I liked “Cool World” and “Roger Rabbit”, do those count?

    Please, no plot quizzes.

  87. The ultimate Anti-consumer/anti-greed message was the “No-face” character from Spirited Away.

  88. I can’t belive that I forgot this in reading most of these comments. Seems you folks did too.

    Movie rule 1 – Plots are to get women to attend.

    Movie rule 2 – Bombs, bullets and babes bring the guys to the movie.

    These are the only important rules for any movie.

  89. where the hell did all the kiddies come from?

    Artificial insemination and/or test tube babies. And if you don’t think FutureTechnology can get through all those rolls of fat, you’re naive.

  90. Zoltan, why do you evade the question?

    I am not defending infantile movies not intended for children. I am asking why now do American adults (especially American MALE adults) seem to relish a perpetual childhood, as reflected in the films they go to? The fact that you guys are not embarrassed about it is the most embarrassing fact of all. When I was younger, I actually WANTED to be an adult–apparently that is fading concept.

    Grow the fuck up, you weenies.

  91. Putting aside parents and pedophiles, why do adults even go to movies like this? And why should we care about them?

    henry:

    Some of the best TV shows ever produced include The Wire, Deadwood, and Dexter (and we can always go back to Hill Street Blues for way back when). I enjoy Al saying cocksucker as much as anyone does.

    The best year in movies that I can pull off the top of my head had Saving Private Ryan, the Mask of Zoro, Shakespeare in Love, Babe: Pig in the City, Pleasantville, and The Truman Show.

    There’s a lot more to telling good stories than showing war, murder, tits&ass, and foul language.

    There is huge difference between a family movies (G or PG rated general entertainment) and a kids movie. If you can’t tell the difference, you must be mostly brain-dead.

  92. These are the only important rules for any movie.

    Who are the ominous, six-foot talking rabbits for?

    mk,
    He’s also a poster-child, I think, for heeding consumer warnings.

  93. I am not defending infantile movies not intended for children. I am asking why now do American adults (especially American MALE adults) seem to relish a perpetual childhood, as reflected in the films they go to? The fact that you guys are not embarrassed about it is the most embarrassing fact of all. When I was younger, I actually WANTED to be an adult–apparently that is fading concept.

    You failed to make there dude.

  94. henry, read my 2:33 post, if you can comprehend it.

  95. Grow the fuck up, you weenies.

    Should we get off your lawn, too?

  96. Who are the ominous, six-foot talking rabbits for?

    The executives who think too much Jessica is possible.

  97. Wall-E didn’t do much for me, and I like just about everything Pixar has put out. I didn’t mind the tubby human stuff, though. The big problem for me was that for much of the movie, the star was alone, with nobody to relate to – and when Eva showed up, she didn’t exactly do much for dialogue. For much the same reason, I also didn’t care for “Cast Away” (Tom Hanks stranded on an island with a volleyball) or “I am Legend” (Will Smith as the last surviving human, with his dog).

    One of the most enjoyable parts of movies is exploring how different characters relate to each other. You can’t do that when the movie only has one character.

  98. Should we get off your lawn, too?

    lol. henry’s posts are much better if you imagine him speaking in a Macho Man Randy Savage voice.

  99. Wall-E is the dork/nerd and Eve is the hot chick.

  100. When I was younger, I actually WANTED to be an adult

    And now that you are an adult how do you feel? Still insecure about whether or not you are an adult enough?

    I don’t need to prove to anyone that I am an adult. I like movies that are well done. I am never embarrassed to watch something of quality regardless of the target demographic.

    Guy,
    If douchebag movies are your thing, fine. But speak for yourself.

  101. @henry

    When I was younger, I actually WANTED to be an adult–apparently that is fading concept.

    So when will you become an adult?

  102. Yea, that is what comes to mind whenever the works of Samuel Clemens are to be destroyed from libraries. Those evil Conservative activists trying to burn Huck Finn!

    Cut the crap. You conservatives are the censoring type. You can’t generalize about a few sensitive middle-school marms who wanted to save the kiddies from “nigger Jim” – though he was one of the great characters of American Lit., – when your judges are prosecuting great Americans like Larry Flynt – followed by greasy headed Georgia bred Bush rednecks who shot him on the courthouse steps.

    Do you think Twain was a racist? Of course not.

    But you were licking the asscrack of that scumbag Jesse Helms on his descent into Hell….

  103. henry’s posts are much better if you imagine him speaking in a Macho Man Randy Savage voice

    Snap into a Slim Jim, henry!

  104. Zoltan, why do you evade the question?

    I am not defending infantile movies not intended for children. I am asking why now do American adults (especially American MALE adults) seem to relish a perpetual childhood, as reflected in the films they go to? The fact that you guys are not embarrassed about it is the most embarrassing fact of all. When I was younger, I actually WANTED to be an adult–apparently that is fading concept.

    Grow the fuck up, you weenies.

    Henry, you’re assuming Wall-E is intending for children only. As evidenced by its message and complexity not to mention its downright accessibility for all ages (I don’t speak for all but some) I would say it’s not just for children. I wouldn’t know what the American male would think of such a thing as I’m pretty sure individuals think on their own and not in some conglomerate blob. Ask one of the males on this board though if you want more insight into the American male psyche.

    As to your last point, I can watch action movies and want to be an assassin or a pirate movie and want to be a pirate. These are irresponsible and unlikely goals to be achieved even if that’s what I really and truly wanted. Then again, I don’t think people watch movies so they can identify with those characters for much longer than two hours. A Pixar movie comes out every two or three years–I can’t want to be a kid for that amount of time?

  105. “SNAP INTO A SLIM JIM!”

  106. For much the same reason, I also didn’t care for “Cast Away” (Tom Hanks stranded on an island with a volleyball) or “I am Legend” (Will Smith as the last surviving human, with his dog).

    These are not particularly great examples, but many good stories (alot of them Sci-Fi) deal with what happens to the humand mind when there’s no one left to talk to.

  107. My bad–I tried to pull the pacifers too soon.

    Keep on sucking, guys–you’ll get laid someday (if you go to a hooker).

  108. The only two “conservative” reviews I’ve read about Wall-E have praised it – both decentfilms.com and James Lileks’ blog accurately stated the films message is more parable than polemic. There was some debate about it on NR’s Corner blog, but that was mostly from one person, the rest that commented liked the film. I think this is mostly Wyman stirring some stuff up…to stir some stuff up.

    Also, agree with commenters above praising Pixar. They are the best studio in Hollywood, perhaps because they aren’t in Hollywood.

  109. shrike,

    You seriously need to seek professional help, if that was supposed to be a serious comment.

    If not, then haha.

  110. I wouldn’t know what the American male would think of such a thing as I’m pretty sure individuals think on their own and not in some conglomerate blob.

    Startlingly optimistic but it is only 2PM and I haven’t gone into work yet.

  111. Any post by shriek shrike has this great manic edge to it, like he’s on a combination of meth and mescaline and is seeing visions of right-wing zombies bearing down on him as he types. Fun stuff.

    Remember, dude, shoot for the head.

  112. I actually WANTED to be an adult–apparently that is fading concept.

    I haven’t seen the movie, but – gleaning from the reviews – isn’t this sentiment (the fading concept) part of the movie?

  113. mk,

    Guy,
    If douchebag movies are your thing, fine. But speak for yourself.

    Perhaps you should join shrike?

    1. I don’t know who you may imagine that I might be speaking for other than myself, but here anyway, I am the only person that I represent.

    2. Not sure who made you the BRAVO channel movie rater queen, but feel free to like and dislike whatever you like.

  114. One thing to note – while the movie on some levels is a milder incarnation of ‘Idiocracy’ and a an argument against American consumerism, the physical appearance of the passengers *was not* blamed on that (at least not ostensibly).

    At one point, Fred Willard’s character tells the rotund captain that everyone’s corpulent appearance is due the microgravity of space and subsequent bone density loss (as illustrated by the successively rotund portraits of the captains seen on the bridge).

  115. Keep on sucking, guys–you’ll get laid someday (if you go to a hooker).

    Two kids and four grandchildren. I’ll make the wild ass guess that I’ve been fucking women longer than you’ve been alive dickhead.

  116. When all else fails, accuse your opposition of lame-ass virginity.

  117. henry,

    I like hooker movies too, but not the thinly disguised Cinderella remakes like Pretty Woman. Well, I did like it okay but the plot kept getting in the way.

  118. Guy,
    I can’t belive that I forgot this in reading most of these comments. Seems you folks did too.

    These are your words, are they not?

  119. Tom Hanks stranded on an island with a volleyball

    Yeah, but when that volleyball floats away and Hanks screams, “Wilson! Wiiiiilson! I’m sorry, Wilson!” I laugh out loud. Cracks me up every time.

  120. mk,

    Yes, so what?

    Going to try to dictate taste some more while you embroider a new cup-holder-thingie?

  121. ALA Most Challenged Books for 2007

    1. “And Tango Makes Three,” by Justin Richardson/Peter Parnell
    Reasons: Anti-Ethnic, Sexism, Homosexuality, Anti-Family, Religious Viewpoint, Unsuited to Age Group

    2. “The Chocolate War,” by Robert Cormier
    Reasons: Sexually Explicit, Offensive Language, Violence

    3. “Olive’s Ocean,” by Kevin Henkes
    Reasons: Sexually Explicit, Offensive Language

    4. “The Golden Compass,” by Philip Pullman
    Reasons: Religious Viewpoint

    5. “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn,” by Mark Twain
    Reasons: Racism

    6. “The Color Purple,” by Alice Walker
    Reasons: Homosexuality, Sexually Explicit, Offensive Language,

    7. “TTYL,” by Lauren Myracle
    Reasons: Sexually Explicit, Offensive Language, Unsuited to Age Group

    8. “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings,” by Maya Angelou
    Reasons: Sexually Explicit

    9. “It’s Perfectly Normal,” by Robie Harris
    Reasons: Sex Education, Sexually Explicit

    10. “The Perks of Being A Wallflower,” by Stephen Chbosky
    Reasons: Homosexuality, Sexually Explicit, Offensive Language, Unsuited to Age Group

    Yes, windmills that liberals tilt at constantly…

    Of course Huck Finn is always a constant pretense on the list, but I have a theory that objections to it are actually coming from conservatives using it as a wedge issue to get one book banned to set a precedent.

  122. Tom Hanks stranded on an island with a volleyball

    I just call that the FedEx movie. Hoe Hanks got them to pay the whole bill for that product placement.

  123. [random fact]

    It was originally UPS, but they didn’t like the notion of everyone seeing their plane crash in the ocean.

    [/random fact]

  124. oops, I did not intend to call Tom Hanks a hoe, but IF I were stranded on an island long enough without pr0n . . . well, not even then.

  125. Guy,

    You and henry are the same person aren’t you?

    It’s pathetic when someone has to make up another poster just so they can find someone who shares their puerile view of the world.

  126. Hollywood can send out their propoganda. People don’t have to buy tickets to see it. And then Hollywood wonders why ticket sales are dropping through the floor.

    People might actually go to the movies if this type of propoganda wasn’t so widespread. If I wanted to see mindless garbage I’d watch Oberman.

  127. I’d rather fuck a coconut.

  128. SF,

    Really? Cool, almost like in 2001 when IBM did not want people seeing their computer go nuts and kill people. Guess Control Dada and others had enough of that the previous year from Colossis: The Forbin Project.

  129. mk,

    What the hell are you talking about now? No, I only post under this handle and I am sure the staff will verify it if you bug them enough.

    Now it is time to send you to the ignore hole where I keep all of the pests.

  130. At one point, Fred Willard’s character tells the rotund captain that everyone’s corpulent appearance is due the microgravity of space and subsequent bone density loss (as illustrated by the successively rotund portraits of the captains seen on the bridge).

    That doesn’t make sense, because scientists have developed exercise equipment specifically for the purpose of combating bone-density loss while also enabling people to stay fit while in space. Exercise itself also helps combat bone density loss. So the corpulence can still only be blamed on inactivity.

    I’ll make the wild ass guess that I’ve been fucking women longer than you’ve been alive dickhead.

    Only a thread about a family movie could really bring out the bilious and vile mudslinging. 🙂

  131. Guys, stop whining–nobody is going to take your cartoons away from you. It is (still, sort of) a free country (for the time being), so you can watch the wonderful world of Disney–right after you finish your peas.

  132. Damn, henry must be the coolest guy on the internet! Wow!

    But on a serious note, doesn’t the fact that someone tried to ban a book make a lot of disinterested third parties suddenly want to read the book?

  133. 5. “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn,” by Mark Twain
    Reasons: Racism

    You forgot homosexuality- *everybody* knows Huck was as queer as a three dollar bill.

    [I don’t ordinarily condescend to disclaimering, but…
    no, they weren’t “doing it” on that raft. Despite what your Freshman Lit professor might have wanted you to think.]

  134. Henry,

    I am singular, not plural 😉

  135. P Brooks,

    You must be confusing Huck with Tom Sawyer.

  136. henry, I think I heard the mail truck. You should go and see if your Social Security check arrived. Then you can cash it and get dinner at 4 PM. Maybe play a little shuffleboard after.

  137. GM,

    Really?

    Random fact would never lie to you. He loves the truth too much.

  138. Damn, henry must be the coolest guy on the internet!

    Maybe not, but his comment @ 3:08 made me LOL at my desk. I’d have to practice really hard to be that acerbic.

  139. Only a thread about a family movie could really bring out the bilious and vile mudslinging. 🙂

    I aim to please.

  140. Epi,

    Disney hate at this level doesn’t come from geezers. henry’s probably a 16-year-old plaid-shirted asswipe who just finished Catcher in the Rye and is out fighting “phonies” everywhere he thinks he can find them. It’s only dumb luck he didn’t read Atlas Shrugged first and swung by to slaver on about selfishness and destroying the parasite class.

  141. henry’s probably a 16-year-old plaid-shirted asswipe who just finished Catcher in the Rye and is out fighting “phonies” everywhere he thinks he can find them

    You know, I totally forgot about that phenomenon until you just mentioned it. But I stand by my assertion that henry is old, and if he isn’t quite as old as I say physically, he is in spirit.

  142. Disney hate at this level doesn’t come from geezers. henry’s probably a 16-year-old plaid-shirted asswipe who just finished Catcher in the Rye and is out fighting “phonies” everywhere he thinks he can find them.

    I’m guessing 19 or so. Old enough to be an “adult” but not old enough to legally buy a drink.

  143. SugarFree,
    What is Catcher in the Rye about anyway?

  144. What is Catcher in the Rye about anyway?

    Whining, mostly; wasn’t it?

  145. economist,

    Yogi Barra on a whiskey bender.

  146. Dang it. I leave for an hour to read me’s link and suddenly everyone goes nuts. I’m going back to the thread about pandering to explain why democracy is a clusterf___.

  147. Of course, when I said “everyone” I meant “henry”. Don’t hound me over it. I was drunk.

  148. “Remember, shoot for the head”
    So have you read the Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brooks?

  149. SF,

    Of course Huck Finn is always a constant pretense on the list, but I have a theory that objections to it are actually coming from conservatives using it as a wedge issue to get one book banned to set a precedent.

    Ah, the old reverse conspiracy trick huh? Is the rest of the PC revolution part of that too?

    Those Christoservatives are a slick lot aren’t they.

  150. Count mk in with the insane crowd, too.

  151. I’ll wager that henry has a little tuft of fuzzy shit on his chin that he calls a beard.

  152. economist,

    Imagine the lead character of Rushmore running around with none of the other characters to tone him down.

    The Glass family stuff is much better Salinger, in my opinion. Catcher isn’t bad, but for certain people, reading it at a certain point in their life, it manufactures pricks.

  153. economist,

    So have you read the Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brooks?

    Who needs that when we have documentries on TCM?

  154. GM,

    It’s just a theory. I don’t care much for liberals, but I’ve worked in public libraries. It’s not the granola moms who scream and bitch about books.

  155. Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brooks

    Also recommend his World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War, which is being made into a movie.

  156. >I>Why didn’t reviewers say that the film sucks eggs?

    Because it’s an excellent film?

  157. What bothered me most about Wall-e was that they were jettisoning trash/garbage/waste from the Axiom. Since the ship was a closed system what was the source of the new material they were consumming? The movie should have made it clear to the kiddies that the fat people were drinking their own recycled piss.

  158. SugarFree,

    Well, I have not been in a proper library in a while, but back in college and around here in the DC Beltway, it has not been the “Conservatives” I have ben running into calling for bans on any sort of speech. It is the other-way leaning crowd.

    Also, I keep hearing that religous groups wanted “porn” banned and I sometimes saw them getting huge audiences on television shows to express their message. However, the folks who would stick “This Image is Offensive to Women” over images of bikini clad women in newspapers and magazines were certainly not in that category, they were a step or two beyond NOW. Those were the folks I saw in person.

  159. Since the ship was a closed system what was the source of the new material they were consumming?

    The same place that the submarine went in Fantastic Voyage, the movie.

    Isaac Azimov took care of it in the book, but the movie didn’t.

    Maybe the sub went to Axiom and that is what they are consuming?

  160. That the left and the right want to ban what they find objectionable doesn’t come as a shock to anyone here. I was merely commenting on this very narrow issue. I stick to my “pox on both of their houses” guns; I don’t care which side is worse when the argument is just about degrees of suckiness.

  161. How many 16 (or 19) year olds remember the Wonderful World of Disney?

    Jesus, you guys are literally clueless.

    Note to self–never asking male Reasonoids (a near total redundancy, I grant you) to grow up; it makes them very self-conscious.

  162. See, NutraSweet? I was right. NEENER NEENER

  163. Jesus christ, henry, you’re a dick, and probably the most childish person in this entire thread. Equating sexual prowess and dislike of cartoons with adulthood? That’s fucking ridiculous.

  164. Jesus, you guys are literally clueless.

    Wouldn’t this statement be predicated on all of us being detectives?

    I admit, henry, that your shtick is way more interesting than your run-of-the-mill troll’s.

  165. Yes, henry. Being a troll is the most mature act an adult like you can do. Congratulations, you’re a dumbass.

  166. Note to self–never asking male Reasonoids (a near total redundancy, I grant you) to grow up; it makes them very self-conscious.

    I think a large percentage of the people that post to H&R during the day (if not the majority) are middle-aged professionals. Telling them to grow up cannot be viewed as anything but an insult. Backing that up by calling them virgins just clarifies how much of a dickhead you are.

  167. OK, Epi… you want to play that game? Fine!

    Welcome To THE PITY PARTY!

  168. “Never ask male reasonoids to grow up”
    So, what, did you have a sex change or something?

  169. In henry’s defense, some of his comments sound like things I might have said when I was a teenager. Teens can be stupid.

  170. shrike,

    You seriously need to seek professional help, if that was supposed to be a serious comment.

    If not, then haha.

    Guy Montag –

    I would expect you to be rendered speechless, you tongue-tied imbecile.

    You prop up your Pinochet inspired wingnuts regularly, but you are listless when it comes to real freedom.

  171. How many 16 (or 19) year olds remember the Wonderful World of Disney?

    Given the wide spread accessibility old content on cable and satellite services, I would guess that lots of todays teens know WWoD.

    So why don’t you just come out and give us your resume. I’m a 51-year-old engineer, married for 32 years, two children, four grand children. And every bit of a fan of Pixar as I am of Deadwood. If you want to call me a virgin youth, you need to back it up. Or shut up. Either way dickhead.

  172. Lots of slagging, but still no answer to the question “What kind of adult, aside from parents (the pedo bit was just hyperbole), goes to see Wall-E?” It is unfathomable to me–THIS is how I am going to spend two hours of time?!? I mean if the Shitoplex has nothing else showing, get a DVD of something worthwhile–the library is filled with them, for free, if that is not too statist.

    But then again I don’t get the whole raging comic book mania here, either–I never liked the fucking things as a kid, so it is no wonder it mystifies me as to adults.

  173. But then again I don’t get the whole raging comic book mania here, either–I never liked the fucking things as a kid, so it is no wonder it mystifies me as to adults.

    Holy crap, you really didn’t read any of my posts, did you. I anticipated where you were going to go next (comics) and then like 50 posts later, you did.

  174. Hm. Should be a ? after that first sentence.

  175. Lots of slagging, but still no answer to the question “What kind of adult, aside from parents (the pedo bit was just hyperbole), goes to see Wall-E?”

    You just haven’t been fucking paying attention then.

  176. henry, do you like gladiator movies?

  177. economist | July 10, 2008, 4:13pm | #
    In henry’s defense, some of his comments sound like things I might have said when I was a teenager. Teens can be stupid.

    Technically, wouldn’t that be in my defense? Unless you’re siding with that scoundrel Epi.

  178. Telling them to grow up cannot be viewed as anything but an insult.

    It is an insult, but I don’t feel at all insulted by it. It’s just such a goofy assertion.

  179. Haven’t seen WALL-E, but it got really high reviews across the board on rottentomatoes??

  180. Why Does Pixar Hate America?

    It’s just the popular dystopia theme this year: poorly-explained civilizational collapse brought on by too much consumerism. Stross’ otherwise excellent “Saturn’s Children” has a similarly silly premise.

    In the 1970s to early 1980s sci-fi, it was global cooling, nukes, and pollution that ruined the world. Now it’s AI, consumerism and global warming.


  181. Lots of slagging, but still no answer to the question “What kind of adult, aside from parents (the pedo bit was just hyperbole), goes to see Wall-E?”

    I saw Wall-E. I’m a reasonably well-adjusted male, early 30s, recently married, have had several gfs before that, make over 6 figures, drive a 2-year-old BMW, big fan of Formula One, NCAA b-ball & football. I tend to vote whoever I perceive to be most libertarian. I don’t rent DVDs from the library (wtf kind of loser does that??), although I have a Netflix account, and I think Ratatouille is one of the best films ever made. What else do you want to know??

  182. . . . drive a 2-year-old BMW, . .

    I have 2-year-old 350Z myself. Had to wait 2 months for it to come from Japan when I ordered I exactly what I wanted instead of taking the show-room model.

  183. don’t rent DVDs from the library (wtf kind of loser does that??)

    [hangs head]. Nah, I’m just kidding, I don’t take stuff like that personally.

  184. Had to wait 2 months for it to come from Japan when I ordered I exactly what I wanted instead of taking the show-room model.

    Never, ever take the showroom/lot model.

    You want my money, you buld the goddamn car I want.

  185. You prop up your Pinochet inspired wingnuts regularly, but you are listless when it comes to real freedom.

    Shrike, perhaps you should change your name to ‘Shrill’.

  186. You want my money, you buld the goddamn car I want.

    I got a special paint job (Interlagos Fire) the first year it was available. The day the car arrived, the Nissan district reps were onsite at the dealership. The manager of the dealership and the district reps were out front staring at the car when I went to pick it up.

  187. Plus, the Columbus Metropolitan Library is just that damn good, Andy.

  188. Shrike, perhaps you should change your name to ‘Shrill’.

    I have already suggested “shriek”.

  189. Lots of slagging, but still no answer to the question “What kind of adult, aside from parents (the pedo bit was just hyperbole), goes to see Wall-E?”

    Ok Henry, I’ll bite. I am 40 years old, married for 10, with a kid on the way. Computer programmer by profession. I see a lot of movies every month, either at the googleplex or on cable tv.

    Maybe because of my Computer Science background, I really like seeing Pixar movies. I love seeing how the graphics gets better (reflections, shadows, fur/hair, physics) as each new movie comes out. Also, their stories are pretty entertaining.

    Henry, are you wondering why grown men still buy comic books and play video games? The short answer is: ‘because they can’. Comic books have changed since you were a lad. There are many series meant for adults (I don’t mean X-rated, I mean mature themes and plots). Y the last man, Transmetropolitan and Spawn, to name a few. Why not buy them? They are only a few dollars a copy.

  190. It’s just a matter of taste. Some people would prefer to “waste” their time watching a G-rated movie, others would rather submit themselves to violence or sex-laden stuff. And don’t even get me started on those people who waste some of their free time watching rom-coms.

  191. That issue was already covered in the movie “Idiocracy” (2006) http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0387808/
    Better get your facts right before pointing fingers.

  192. I have already suggested “shriek”.

    Really jabbing there….

    You fuckwads should ax your bad self, “why does capitalism require the point of a gun”?

    Now, I know the answer.

    But you don’t.

    Sure, freedom is best. Tell that to a starving worker drone though.

    And I am a Darwinist…

    I just hate butt-plugged GOPers who pretend that they contribute to the economy.

  193. Ok. This article just appeared over at Slate.

    This is really turning into a thing isn’t it? I thought it was a bit of a laugh at first.

  194. henry sure has a strange way of conducting surveys.

    shrike,
    I don’t know what your last post meant.

  195. Juanita, Jersey McJones, Dan T., and now Shrike.

    The names change, but…

  196. Juanita is art.

  197. Try to illustrate some substance, Kurt.

    Your little Rolodex is meaningless.

  198. mk,

    Thanks. I read this commentary linked to the Slate article and I have to say I agree with both the Slate article and the girl’s letter. I don’t see why a company would go to such great lengths to make a movie mocking fat people. It’s not a very artistic idea, frankly.

    Full disclosure: I haven’t seen Wall*E and I had no desire to because it looked to me like it was going to be pretty lame. I mean, Wall*E himself is a direct rip-off of Number 5 from Short Circuit.

  199. What kind of adult, aside from parents (the pedo bit was just hyperbole), goes to see Wall-E?

    Adults who are smart enough to know who the best studio in the business is? And that animation is all Saturday morning cartoons?

  200. Arrgh.

    And that animation is notall Saturday morning cartoons?

  201. Aww, fuckit. Fingers tired. Point made.

  202. Haven’t seen WallE yet, but my guess is that the Slate guy and the fat twat with the personal website are over-reacting.

  203. Sitting on your ass stuffing your face watching tv all day tends to add a few pounds. It’s the sedentary lifestyle they’re criticizing.

  204. Here’s a pretty good article about the hypocrisy of Pixar.

    short, fat bastard,

    I don’t see how writing a commentary is over-reacting. They have a right to form their own opinion of the film as much as anybody else does. The point is, even if the world is getting fatter overall, it’s still not going to be populated solely by fat people. Portraying the dystopian future as populated solely by fat people somehow implies that fatness is to blame for environmental issues, or that fat people ate all of the remaining thin people on the planet. It’s really rather heavy-handed (pardon the pun).

  205. Think of how much better henry’s life (and the lives of everyone around him) might have been if somebody had taken the time to get him to watch “The Musical Maestro” when he was a kid.

  206. best review of Wall-E … notices the fat people, calls a spade a spade …

    http://www.bigempire.com/filthy/walle.html

  207. “Musical Maestro” ?

    For pity’s sake. I’ve gone and spoilt the whole thing.

    Magical, goddammit.

    “Magical Maestro”

  208. That’s called “homage” smacky 😉

    We stand on the shoulders of giants, or on Steve Guttenberg, whichever.

  209. I think multiple people use shrike as a handle. There’s too much discrepancy between the relatively reasonable if slightly left-leaning shrike and the raving leftist psychotic shrike.

  210. “QMFT!

    Proofed the whole post, then fucked up the acronym — I am such a loser ;-)”

    I read it as: Quoted for Mother Fuckin’ Truth!

  211. I found it odd that most mainstream reviewers didn’t bother to point out what the film was saying.

    Maybe it has something to do with denunciations of sloth, waste, gluttony, and environmental destruction not being controversial among people outside of your bizarre little cult, Mr. Wyman.

  212. I read an insightful comment (somewhere…I can’t remember now) that pointed out that fat people are actually more energy-efficient than thin people, because people who are prone to gaining weight are able to intake food and store some energy for later — potentially for use in a time of food shortage — whereas thin people metabolize everything they consume and would theoretically require more calories to survive, as the calories they consume would be used only for immediate survival.

    Makes sense.

  213. smacky,
    No. In the meantime, we have to expend energy hauling our fat asses around. Plus, the calories spent converting the food to fat add an energy loss that would be avoided if we just consumed food as needed. Quite a bit less efficient, actually.

  214. Maybe they’re just touching on the zeitgeist? I mean, the Incredibles was just as much a celebration of the popular feeling of the time (power is to be used, there is always another enemy to fight) as Wall-E is now (our current path is unsustainable, there are clouds on the horizon).

  215. henry–You have no taste or imagination. You shot your wad so hard trying to be all growd up that you killed whatever spark you ever had to begin with. You now officially suck to be around. Congrats.

    Now, continue to stare at the wall of your cube and rage at others on the Intertubes for having an interest in things other than what you do (assuming you actually have any interests other than pathological masturbation) and zest for all aspects of life.

    And no, the hot chick in Marketing won’t even think about dating a dweeb tool like you.

  216. And there’s the money shot:

    “Maybe fat people will be offended because it shows fat people acting fat. Fuck them. And fuck anyone who doesn’t like the message that you can consume yourself into oblivion. First, that’s not a political sentiment; it’s been politicized by assholes with political agendas, mostly those who want your support in exchange for their assurance you can be as big a pig as you want and it’ll never affect anything. Second, if you can’t enjoy incredibly well-made movies just because they don’t share your opinions, you’re a fucking douche. Grow a thicker skin and get your head out of Fox News’ asshole long enough to appreciate art and diversity. Probably these same dipshits will label it more Hollywood liberal propaganda. It’s not. The way this movie is not Hollywood-style in any way, but that fact will be lost on those people.”

  217. The writer/director swears that he only tried to imagine a world that made enough logical sense to support the love story. But since critics have a long history of thinking they know more than the artists they rely on, they just don’t believe him. They “felt” a message, so either he’s lying or in denial. It’s really ridiculous.

  218. I saw WALL-E last week at the drive-in in Wellfleet, MA last week with my kids. I waited until we were up there to see it, as I want them to have some good and solid memories about actually seeing a movie at an honest-to-god drive-in. They really dig it (we saw Ratatouille there last year).

    In short: they loved it, but I thought it wasn’t one of Pixar’s better efforts: I’d put it above Cars and Monsters Inc., but just below Toy Story and Nemo (and yes, Ratatouille). I agree completely with the previous comments about Brad Bird. The Incredibles is by far their best effort to date. The missus actually loves it and she’s just to the left of henry on cartoons (tho’ I did get her to finally sit down and watch a couple eps of Avatar. She had to agree that it was one of the better animated shows out there.)

    The first half was some decent pantomime and slapstick and the kids weren’t bored at all (they thought Cars was, *meh*). Very Buster Keaton-ish (steal from the best). While I thought the eco-disaster was a little over-the-top, it came off as satire to me and just a vehicle for the plot. The 2nd half with the humans is, yes, not as good, but it wouldn’t have made much sense without them. “There’s bound to be a little bone loss after 700 years!” LARF!

    Fred Willard as the prez is genuis. ‘Nuf said.

    [random fact] I have read that WALL-E was modeled after ET and was voiced by the same actor that did ET’s voice, but damned if I can find the link now. [/random fact]

  219. Try to illustrate some substance, Kurt.

    Your little Rolodex is meaningless.

    Heh. The others know what I am talking about.

    That is sufficient.

  220. Heh. The others know what I am talking about.

    Yeah, the first several lines of Ginsberg’s “Howl” seem to describe a few remarkable individuals in H & R history pretty well.

  221. I got a special paint job (Interlagos Fire) the first year it was available. The day the car arrived, the Nissan district reps were onsite at the dealership. The manager of the dealership and the district reps were out front staring at the car when I went to pick it up.

    Nice.

  222. I read an insightful comment (somewhere…I can’t remember now) that pointed out that fat people are actually more energy-efficient than thin people

    Homer Simpson (after gaining 100 lbs to get on overweight disability): “I’m drought- and famine-resistant!”

  223. WALL-E is way over the heads of every con who’s attacking it on its ecological/anti-consumerism theme. This is a story about love, specifically about how it relates to freedom, power, and material wealth. Grouped together, these are all things essential to helping life beyond that Hobbesian existence which is nasty, brutish, and short.

    The situation we are asked to consider in this movie is a overcoming of Hobbes, but one in which love specifically has been punted out of the dynamic. The consequences of this tweak are that humans squander their free will, that the power establishment cravenly perpetuates itself at the expense of striving for anything more, and that the material situation, though completely addressing every biological want and need, is pathetic and empty.

    The grist is where this gets dicey for L*I*B*E*R*T*A*R*I*A*N*S. All of the heroes of the movie are robots and humans who toss the rulebook out and do things their own way. So far, so good–freedom wins the day, right? And yet, there is no freedom to WALL-E’s actions. He is instead compelled through every one of his choices by his love for EVE. Moreover, the other characters who follow suit also break the rules in the service of love, both in support of WALL-E’s romantic quest, and later out of a more general agape, all forms of the love that we are to understand WALL-E has reintroduced to the world.

    The movie therefore seems to be saying that love is more important than freedom. With regards to making life less poopy, freedom completely failed, while love merely almost did. I’ll bet that is what is really gnawing at that natural born ideologue Mr. Gillespie. Just guessing, but seems like ole’ Nicky would rather be free to not give a shit.

    Disclosure: I’m a lonesome, romantic, catatonic fat fuck. With an ecology degree! So yeah, best movie evar.

  224. I have read that WALL-E was modeled after ET

    Ya know, I caught ET on the satellite a few days after seeing Wall-E, and thought there was a real similarity in there.

    And yet, there is no freedom to WALL-E’s actions. He is instead compelled through every one of his choices by his love for EVE.

    WTF? This is a very weak meaning of “compelled”; libertarians aren’t Vulcans, we think the whole point of freedom is to do what you want, no matter how eccentric or driven by your own internal whatever you might be.

    The movie therefore seems to be saying that love is more important than freedom.

    Love is 100% compatible with freedom. Being madly in love and being completely free are not mutually exclusive in any way.

  225. I’ll bet that is what is really gnawing at that natural born ideologue Mr. Gillespie. Just guessing, but seems like ole’ Nicky would rather be free to not give a shit.

    Not to defend Nick, he’s quite capable of defending himself, but everyone coming down on him for disliking WALL-E are attributing ideas to him he did not personally espouse.

    In short, Nick wrote that he thought the film sucked for non-ideological reasons. That’s it. He didn’t think it was a very good film and thought Fred Willard was mis-used in the film, an opinion I don’t agree with.

    He just happened to link his opinion with a critical ideological review of the film, and thus, Nick is viewing the film through his libertarian prism. I have no idea whether he is doing that or not, but he certainly did not write anything of the sort.

    What is clear, however, is that some people who are praising the film aren’t doing so on its’ artistic merits, but instead are viewing it through their own ideological prism of leftist ideals and unabashed tree-hugging. “Yeah! They’re stickin’ it to Wal-Mart and making those suburban fucks look like the lazy fat-asses they are! And anyone who sez different is a brain-dead neocon lapdog! We’ve got to save the planet!”

    That said, Nick-hatahs, heal thyselves and try actually reading the very short ‘graph that he wrote.

  226. Speaking of ideological prisms, speaking for myself, I watch films for entertainment value first and I generally apply my worldview to it 2nd.

    For example, Das Boot is an amazing piece of filmwork, sucking the viewer into the very hell on the sub, holding your breath during the depth charging scenes and rooting for the crew when the water comes rushing in and things look even more dire. At the same time, I had to remind myself that they’re Nazis! I hope these sick fucks really do die! Give ’em another one and send their goose-stepping asses to the bottom!

    On the extreme end, American Beauty was such an obvious-club-you-over-the-head, 2-dimensional, 2-hour, Hollywood-lefty circle jerk about how everyone else is sooooo bad and we’re sooooo much better, that all I could do is laugh at the heinous scene chewing, ridiculous characters and plotlines and seeth about the 7 bucks and time of my life wasted.

    I can usually overlook positied ideals in films that conflict with my own, while still enjoying the film for it’s own value, so long as it’s a well-made film with value beyond the political.

    WALL-E does this, but only barely, IMHO. The director, Andrew Stanton, had a much, much better film when he directed Finding Nemo.

  227. JW:

    Just saw Das Boot for the first time a few weeks ago and I am with you on most points. I wasn’t hoping for them to die; just desert and sail to Argentina.

    I maintain that people who criticize WALL-E for an anti-consumerism message don’t get it, and I add that anyone who praises it for an anti-consumerism message also doesn’t get it. If there’s a difference between ideological messages and moral ones, this movie is making the latter.

    Because it isn’t criticizing material wealth per se. WALL-E himself maintains a growing collection of things he collects out of trash he is supposed to destroy. These things provide him with comfort and entertainment, and more importantly, they stimulate his transformative emotional growth. As far as on the ship, I think all that Andrew Stanton is saying is that piling on the wealth Hometown Buffet style doesn’t compensate for a lack of love. That’s it–not bad–just doesn’t compensate. Love is therefore the limiting reagent to the movie’s situation; adding more of everything else doesn’t speed up the reaction whose result is, well, I’ll maintain my nihilist delusions and just call it progress, though the movie is definitely hinting at something spiritual.

    RC Dean: I’m neither philosopher nor trekkie, and I’ll admit that even this movie may be over my head, inasmuch as I can articulate what I am sensing from it. Obviously freedom is a hugely important concept to the movie. Again, every single hero is someone who says “fuck it, I’ma do it my way!”

    Perhaps a more accurate, though less assertive, assessment of the the movie’s relative weighting of these things that make life other than nasty, brutish, and short, would be to say that freedom just doesn’t stand alone. Still a statement which I think might rankle anyone who believes in freedom uber alles. Freedom, wealth, power, and love; they’re ALL important, and uncovering the proper balance between them is what this movie is all about.

    And yet, I can’t help but feel that the way WALL-E is, after all, a love story, and the way that it is love which is considered in absentia from the other states of mind, says that love has a special place on the totem pole. What that place is, exactly, and whether or not I believe that, well, that’s what’s gnawing at me. With Nick I’m just guessing.

    And of course, I’m sure Nick Gillespie is perfectly capable of defending himself. I mean, that leather jacket he wears on teevee just exudes such badassery that I know I wouldn’t want to fuck with him. In person.

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