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Old 06-04-2009, 09:07 PM   #481
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I agree the film weakens in its second half mostly, Muntz being an unfortunately poorly written presence in the film. That said, the humor really did work for me, and I think Wall-E really falls apart in its second half, whereas this just falters a bit. I'd probably like Ratatouille more if I didn't find the two main characters absolutely unbearable.
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Old 06-04-2009, 10:33 PM   #482
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Yeah, I agree with those criticisms of Ratatouille, but it was just so immaculately designed and directed the weak leads weren't a dealbreaker for me (and I was really only annoyed by the guy, not the rat). Of course, I'd argue that the kid in Up was pretty weak if not annoying. "Fatty finally manages to climb up a rope" was basically his character arc; not nearly as interesting as Carl's.

Also, while I agree the desolate Earth stuff in Wall-E was far better than the second half on the space station, I don't think you could have filled a whole film up with it. The criticisms of consumer culture and runaway laziness and obesity were broadly portrayed, but of course it's a family animated film; how nuanced do you expect it to be? It was still a ballsy move for a Disney-released film to put up a giant middle finger to a large portion of their audience.
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Old 06-04-2009, 10:37 PM   #483
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Also, while I agree the desolate Earth stuff in Wall-E was far better than the second half on the space station, I don't think you could have filled a whole film up with it.
Exactly. Unless PIXAR wanted to release a sort-of Fantasia as their film for that year, there had to be a different style in the second-half.
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Old 06-04-2009, 10:48 PM   #484
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Right. And the film really underperformed to begin with, so even half a "silent" film was perhaps too experimental for the general public.
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Old 06-05-2009, 04:35 PM   #485
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Well The Hangover is the funniest movie I've seen in a very long time. But considering it's about two things I love more than just about anything (Vegas, drinking heavily), the chances of my not liking it were very slim.

Still. Awesome.
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Old 06-05-2009, 04:52 PM   #486
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I always say I'm going to see these comedies at the cheap theatre, and never do; the exception being the Apatow stuff. I still haven't caught Observe and Report yet, either. But I think I will definitely be setting aside $2 for when The Hangover gets there. It just looks too funny. First up though is The Girlfriend Experience, which I wasn't sure would make it to the second run circuit. Sweet.
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Old 06-06-2009, 02:55 PM   #487
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Right. And the film really underperformed to begin with, so even half a "silent" film was perhaps too experimental for the general public.
What do you mean by underpeformed? It opened far bigger than Ratatouille, and while that can be attributed to having grand marketing, the silent factor didn't deter people from coming back, as it made nearly four times its opening weekend in total. And $534m worldwide, 4th highest Pixar gross. If the general public had the kind of reaction we might have expected from them when they actually saw the movie and were turned off by it, it would have fallen off, but it stayed strong and soared to smash success just like every other Pixar movie. You risk a lot with a bait and switch marketing campaign, mostly the film's box office legs and reputation (tempt the wrong audience into seeing a movie, or show them something it isn't and they'll be pissed and crap all over it for all time, which seems like what will happen with The Road) but this time they did OK.

Perhaps why Ratatouille stands out so much for me is how unexpected it was, the marketing wasn't good at all, the only reason I was going is because of my trust in Pixar, but then it shocked me by not only being up to par with their films, but having a beyond impressive storyline, that wasn't at all kid friendly, its definitely where they stepped away from making kids movies despite the marketing and general opinion that animated movies are for kids. Also the animation in Ratatouille is simply stunning (I'm not as enthused by the character design, and the one thing I've always somewhat disliked about their movies is their rendering of people) but the whole picture surpassed Finding Nemo for me in terms of sheer visual quality, Cars had some incredible vistas but not the ridiculous detail that FN had. Their movies have always been more interested in storytelling that anyone can appreciate, their early movies are like that too but I feel they're still easily digestable, but Ratatouille, Wall-E, and Up are stunning for their artistry and weaving in of thematic material.

That said, their first movies weren't just fun for me when I was a kid, but still stand up as awesome stories with excellent humor now, I'll love Toy Story for the rest of my life not just for nostalgia (as with some of my favorite movies as a kid) but because of how much of a classic it deservedly is.
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Old 06-06-2009, 05:34 PM   #488
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Comparatively speaking, I enjoyed it more than T4 or Up.


I would not rate it a 8.5 or 9

probably a 7, maybe 7.5

My nit picks,

I did not like the scene with the kid, stealing the Vette and throwing it over a cliff. I thought it was just pandering to adolescent males, (good for the box office)

The bar scene, when he sits down next to an alien than has a simian like nose, why is he the only alien in there. I thought they were a bit chintzy with the aliens. The alien in green paint, looked like a Troma production.

The Chekhov character annoyed me, and I like that actor a lot. He was great in Huff.
These are just a few reasons why I did not rate it higher.

I sat through Star Trek again last night

and most of my nit picks seemed to evaporate

The Corvette scene is not very long, ( I had just seen it in the preview, too many times) and it begins with his step-father on the phone saying, just because your mom is not here, don't think you can take my vette, so I guess it was for character development, rebellious youth.

and the bar scene had at least 2 more aliens, they were just were not as pronounced as the simian one.

Chekhov's accent did wear a bit thin by the end of the movie.

But, overall this is a very good movie, I would easily put it in the 8 range and don't disagree with the current 8.4 on imdb.
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Old 06-06-2009, 05:39 PM   #489
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Wolverine. 5/10.

What a dumb movie, but the naked Hugh Jackman did make up for it.

Oh and the "Your country needs you." "I'm Canadian" exchange was gold.
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Old 06-06-2009, 08:18 PM   #490
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What do you mean by underpeformed? It opened far bigger than Ratatouille, and while that can be attributed to having grand marketing, the silent factor didn't deter people from coming back, as it made nearly four times its opening weekend in total. And $534m worldwide, 4th highest Pixar gross. If the general public had the kind of reaction we might have expected from them when they actually saw the movie and were turned off by it, it would have fallen off, but it stayed strong and soared to smash success just like every other Pixar movie. You risk a lot with a bait and switch marketing campaign, mostly the film's box office legs and reputation (tempt the wrong audience into seeing a movie, or show them something it isn't and they'll be pissed and crap all over it for all time, which seems like what will happen with The Road) but this time they did OK.
I didn't mean to imply that Wall-E was some kind of bomb. But considering the way it was marketed ("We've been planning this film since Pixar was founded"), as well as the amazing critical reception, it could should have been their highest-grossing film, period.
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Old 06-06-2009, 10:43 PM   #491
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Well I think it certainly did better than could be expected given how its told, regardless of how much of a passion project it was, it flew on their brand name and their talent, not on its marketablitiy as a movie, a half-silent/half-message movie making more than Finding Nemo? I never saw that as a possibility, outdoing Ratatouille domestically and the much more made-for-kids to eat up Kung Fu Panda is more than a success in my mind. And for the record, I didn't think you meant it was a bomb, just clarifying in what respect you thought it underperformed.
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Old 06-07-2009, 12:18 AM   #492
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"The Hangover". Great flick! Funny!
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Old 06-07-2009, 12:25 AM   #493
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What do you mean by underpeformed? It opened far bigger than Ratatouille, and while that can be attributed to having grand marketing, the silent factor didn't deter people from coming back, as it made nearly four times its opening weekend in total. And $534m worldwide, 4th highest Pixar gross. If the general public had the kind of reaction we might have expected from them when they actually saw the movie and were turned off by it, it would have fallen off, but it stayed strong and soared to smash success just like every other Pixar movie. You risk a lot with a bait and switch marketing campaign, mostly the film's box office legs and reputation (tempt the wrong audience into seeing a movie, or show them something it isn't and they'll be pissed and crap all over it for all time, which seems like what will happen with The Road) but this time they did OK.

Perhaps why Ratatouille stands out so much for me is how unexpected it was, the marketing wasn't good at all, the only reason I was going is because of my trust in Pixar, but then it shocked me by not only being up to par with their films, but having a beyond impressive storyline, that wasn't at all kid friendly, its definitely where they stepped away from making kids movies despite the marketing and general opinion that animated movies are for kids. Also the animation in Ratatouille is simply stunning (I'm not as enthused by the character design, and the one thing I've always somewhat disliked about their movies is their rendering of people) but the whole picture surpassed Finding Nemo for me in terms of sheer visual quality, Cars had some incredible vistas but not the ridiculous detail that FN had. Their movies have always been more interested in storytelling that anyone can appreciate, their early movies are like that too but I feel they're still easily digestable, but Ratatouille, Wall-E, and Up are stunning for their artistry and weaving in of thematic material.

That said, their first movies weren't just fun for me when I was a kid, but still stand up as awesome stories with excellent humor now, I'll love Toy Story for the rest of my life not just for nostalgia (as with some of my favorite movies as a kid) but because of how much of a classic it deservedly is.
Very well said. Although I think The Incredibles may be more indicative of that shift moreso than Ratatouille. Maybe it's what Brad Bird brought into the Pixar mix that makes this movie so awesome, or the fact that it's essentially Watchmen mixed with the Golden Age of Comics and a family sitcom, which shouldn't work at all, but does. They get away with a ton of mayhem in this movie... totally love that. The problem with most children's films is that the stakes aren't high enough for any one character, so when they're actually put into situations of peril, it's a breeze. Live-action stuff like The Goonies and The Monster Squad mastered that, and the better Disney animated films, like Pinocchio and The Lion King do as well.

Any chance I get to lather The Incredibles up with praise, I do. Can't wait to see Up... I may even re-watch Finding Nemo to see if my thoughts have changed on it. Dory bugged the hell out of me.
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Old 06-07-2009, 12:41 AM   #494
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I saw Role Models last night. Loved it. Paul Rudd is adorable and Jane Lynch is one of my favorite character actresses. She's a hoot. The beginning seemed off kilter but it ended up to be really great.

8/10

I attempted to watch the first 15 min of 2001:Space Odyssey. Um....wtf?
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Old 06-07-2009, 12:42 AM   #495
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Just for the hell out of it, and so people can flame me a bit:

1. Up
2. Monsters Inc.
3. The Incredibles
4. Wall-E
5. Ratatouille
6. Toy Story
7. Toy Story 2
8. A Bug's Life
9. Finding Nemo

Haven't seen Cars.
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