Put on your Sunday clothes and see WALL*E
My birthday was this past weekend, so Deb and three women-friends thought we should celebrate it by seeing WALL*E since, well, Wally is my name, after all, and as far as we know, this film marks the first time in movie and TV history it hasn’t been connected to a fink, a wallflower, a sexually dysfunctional killer, or a best friend to Eddie Haskell.
As animated movies go, WALL*E has one big thing going for it: there are no talking, singing, or dancing animals in it. But it has a lot of other things going for it, too. The animation, as you’d expect from Pixar and Disney, is top-notch. Aimed at a kids’ market, the movie’s dystopian vision is ballsy. And most interestingly, it tells its story largely without dialogue, and it does that so well, you never miss it. With a minimal word count, this little outer space fable manages to be effectively charming, heart-wrenching, and funny. That’s quite an accomplishment.
The critics love WALL*E. So much so that there’s now a backlash, much of it from conservative and right-libertarian corners. The cartoon is anti-progress, they say. It’s anti-business. It’s anti-consumer. Its environmentalism is hogwash. It will only further brainwash children into the Al Gore camp. All those charges may be true. But most of these complaints come from folks who somehow survived the leftist brainwashing of science fiction movies like Soylent Green, Silent Running, and Planet of the Apes three and four decades ago. WALL*E is no more “dangerous” than those films were in their time. Enjoy it for what it is: a smart, clever piece of animated sci-fi.
And after you’ve seen WALL*E, just see if you can stop Michael Crawford from singing “Put On Your Sunday Clothes” over and over in your head. I double-dog-dare you.