Monsters University

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Re: Monsters University

Post by Vernadyn » June 21st, 2013, 6:25 pm

Oh, and regarding The Blue Umbrella (the short)... on a technical level, it was neat, I guess, but the story itself was underwhelming. It was basically a "meet cute" story, the kind of which was done much better with Paperman. It's probably Pixar's most disappointing stand-alone short for me. Notably, the music is not by Giacchino, but by Jon Brion. I love Giacchino, but it's nice to see Pixar beginning to use a variety of composers (like Brion, Mark Mothersbaugh, and Henry Jackman) for its short films.

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Re: Monsters University

Post by James » June 23rd, 2013, 12:28 am


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Re: Monsters University

Post by Dacey » June 23rd, 2013, 1:17 pm

Nice review, James!

There was one part--I'm sorry for this--that I feel the need to add my two cents to, though...
So where is this all coming from? I assume from Cars 2. While definitely not a dud at the box office, critics panned it. Would it have gotten the same response if any other studio had made it? I don’t think so. It’d probably be hailed as one of their best films.
As I said before...I am not a Cars 2 hater, and overall enjoyed it in theaters. Having said that, I really don't think it would've gotten different reviews if it came from another studio (unless it was a small one with like no money). The Kung Fu Panda films, How to Train Your Dragon and Shrek 1 & 2 would still be the best regarded DreamWorks films, Ice Age and Horton would be Blue Sky's, etc.

However you felt about Cars 2, focusing on the sidekick character who most critics found annoying (even though I'll admit to liking Mater) was never going to fare well with critics, Pixar or not. The same could be said for many other aspects of the film. And, again, I am really not a Cars 2 hater, and even agree with you about it maybe getting a somewhat unfair bad rep. But those who disliked it did dislike it for a reason, and I don't think their faith in Pixar was the only one.
Last edited by Dacey on June 23rd, 2013, 5:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Monsters University

Post by James » June 23rd, 2013, 5:03 pm

Here's my proof that Cars 2 from another studio would have been declared a hit. Despicable Me has a higher Rotten Tomatoes score than Monsters University. Despicable Me is one of the top 100 animated films according to them.

Despicable Me was good, especially coming from a studio like Illumination. But I doubt many serious critics who had to rank the two films would put it above MU. Despicable Me got extra points for being better than expected from a smaller more unknown studio. Monsters University is having points taken away for not being another Best Picture worthy film from Pixar.

Cars 2 is at least on the same level as Despicable Me.

Anyway, my real point there was, why the hate for Pixar sequels when looking at their track record, at the very worst they've made two of the best sequels in movie history and one mediocre one?

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Re: Monsters University

Post by Bill1978 » June 24th, 2013, 5:35 pm

I think the 'hate' comes from that for years pixar was releasing highly original stories while their competitor Dreamworks was releasing sequel after sequel. Then Pixar decided that their next slate would involve pretty much a sequence of sequels/prequels. Which I assume some felt meant they had turned to the dark side and adopted Dreamworks philosophy of just doing it for the money.

As you said, in their high catalogue they have released 4 follow up movies, but I think it is the sequel sequel original prequel release that have some people throwing up their hands and announcing the doom of Pixar originality. And then the annoucnement of Finding Dory probably just compounded their views.

The only sequel I didn't throughly enjoy was Cars 2, but as I have said previously I am not a huge fan of movies that revolve around cars anyway - I haven't seen a single Fast & Furious movie and i often tune out during car chases in movies - so I wasn't the target audience for that film orthe original one (Where i love the Radiator Springs part but hate the racing part).

As long as Pixar keep making original stories using pre-existing characters and not simply repeating a previous story in a new location, I am fine with what Pixar are doing. Although it won't stop me from saying tongue in cheek 'Pixar has ran out of original stories' LoL

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Re: Monsters University

Post by James » June 24th, 2013, 6:36 pm

Pixar has 6 (SIX!!!) Oscar nominations for Best Original Screenplay. That is damn impressive. At this point that's a huge part of their DNA, so I don't see original stories ever taking a back seat at Pixar.

BTW: one of their sequels - TS3 - earned them their first Best Adapted Screenplay Oscar nomination. So all in all that's 7 Oscar nominations for writing out of 13 animated films. Amazing. With a storytelling pedegree like that, that's why they deserve the benefit of the doubt on these sequels.

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Re: Monsters University

Post by Bill1978 » June 25th, 2013, 12:51 am

Wow I had no idea they had a great track record with Screenplays at the Oscars. All i ever seem to remember is the Toy Story one and I think that's cause it got Joss Whedon a nomination. I hang my head in shame for not remembering the other 6 nominations (and let's be honest that TS3 one is really for original, it's just the silly Academy rules involving pre-exisiting characters that forced the Adapted nom). I probably forgot them all because they went to a variety of people, when really that is a major credit for a film company to gloat about in regards to their writing.

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Re: Monsters University

Post by ShyViolet » June 28th, 2013, 5:26 pm

According to this Pixar will release an original movie every year and a sequel every other year:

http://m.hitfix.com/in-contention/pixar ... nd-sequels
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Re: Monsters University

Post by EricJ » June 28th, 2013, 7:04 pm

Bill1978 wrote:I think the 'hate' comes from that for years pixar was releasing highly original stories while their competitor Dreamworks was releasing sequel after sequel. Then Pixar decided that their next slate would involve pretty much a sequence of sequels/prequels. Which I assume some felt meant they had turned to the dark side and adopted Dreamworks philosophy of just doing it for the money.
A lot of it does come out of our paranoia toward third-party CGI studios in general--
Dreamworks pumps out sequels because they once counted their studio's five-year plan on thinking they'd have a Shrek 6, and now they have to find six sequels of something else and they're not sure what.
But then, Not Really Knowing How This Stuff Works is what makes them Dreamworks.

PIxar builds its reputation on knowing what it does, and when not to do it.
If they say "Hey, we didn't want to do a Monsters sequel, but our hands were tied, so we at least tried to have a little fun", I give them the benefit of the doubt and believe them.
Everyone assumes the Dark Side Is All-Powerful, and that once Pixar tastes sequels, they'll instantly transform into cigar-chomping Hollywood moguls, and figuring out how to make six sequels of their own product...Think a lot of folks are worrying about some factor not specifically having to do with the studio, and if it isn't, what IS it really about?

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Re: Monsters University

Post by ShyViolet » June 28th, 2013, 7:34 pm

The article I put up states that Pixar's rough plan is to release a sequel every other year.
I'd hardly say that means "their hands are tied"; they need to deliver sure-fire hits for Disney between more daring, original films. It's their choice to crank out moneymakers so that there's money for films like Up and WALL-E. That's really not very different from what DW does. Films like The Croods are released to give films like Me and My Shadow a fighting chance.
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Re: Monsters University

Post by James » June 29th, 2013, 10:24 am

I think the difference between Pixar and DW is that as soon as DW realizes they have a hit, the executives start immediately talking publicly about the sequel. Google "Croods sequel" if you don't believe me! There's no reason DW should be talking about that with the original Croods still in theatres. It adds to the perception --deserved if you remember their previous announcements about 6 Panda movies and reminding us that HTTYD is actually 8 books -- that DW is a sequel factory.

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Re: Monsters University

Post by Macaluso » June 29th, 2013, 4:51 pm

Monsters University was fantastic and I agree that the critics aren't basing their reviews on how good the movie is and instead how good the movie is compared to other great Pixar movies. And it's a shame because it's really good, the animation is beyond stellar, and they chose a message that is pretty daring for a kid's movie
click to reveal content
You might not achieve all your dreams, and that's okay because there might be something just as good. You knew the entire movie that Mike wasn't going to become a scarer. So it was interesting watching how that was going to play out, and the fact that he wanted it so bad but in the end he didn't get it was a pretty daring thing to do in a genre that is very much "all your dreams will come true". In reality no all your dreams probably won't come true, but that's not a bad thing. It was ALSO pretty ballsy I think to have the main characters in a kids movie NOT graduate college but instead get expelled and they had to work their way up to the positions they are in Monsters Inc.
The longer I sit on it, the more I like it because it takes a few risks that you don't see very often. Monsters U isn't getting enough credit from the critics because it's not a Toy Story or an UP or a Wall-E. But what do critics know? Rotten tomatoes has the very good Hotel Transylvania at 43% and they can just get out of here with that nonsense.

Also there wasn't nearly enough Art. That dude was great.

Oh yeah and also Dean Hardscrabble was just a wonder to watch animation wise, and I would have loved to have seen her when she was a scarer. She's the kind of monster who could be legit terrifying in real life along with the librarian.

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Re: Monsters University

Post by James » June 29th, 2013, 8:55 pm

Pixar is only being compared to itself, which is fine to a point. But overall it needs to be judged in relation to everyone else.

And you're right, Art was my favorite too and the Dean was creepy as... Hades!

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Re: Monsters University

Post by Josh » June 29th, 2013, 10:55 pm

Monsters University is much better than I expected. The only real complaint I have - and I can't believe I'm saying this - is Randy Newman's score. I love his score for Monsters, Inc. But I think he dropped the ball during...
click to reveal content
...the end montage of Mike and Sulley moving up the ranks of Monsters, Inc., as well as the final shot of Mike walking onto the scare floor.
Newman is usually a master of striking the right emotion during important scenes like these. But this time, he went for something that sounds like it came from a royalty-free music sampler.

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Re: Monsters University

Post by Macaluso » June 29th, 2013, 11:13 pm

See I thought his score was great because he stuck with the university band/drumline thing throughout the ENTIRE soundtrack. It's kind of subtle at times but I thought that was a great touch.

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