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WALL-E (****)
directed by Andrew Stanton
written by Andrew Stanton and Pete Docter
Principal Cast
Ben Burtt -- WALL•E / M-O (voice)
Elissa Knight -- Eve (voice)
Jeff Garlin -- Captain (voice)
Fred Willard -- Shelby Forthright, BnL CEO
MacInTalk -- AUTO (voice)
John Ratzenberger -- John (voice)
Kathy Najimy -- Mary (voice)
Sigourney Weaver -- Ship's Computer (voice)
Ratings are based on Rick's four star system.
One star - the commercials are more entertaining than the viewing.
Two stars - watch if you have nothing better to do.
Three stars - good solid entertainment.
Four stars - you never dreamed viewing could be this good.
Past Feature Reviews
A review by Rick Norwood

WALL-E I loved WALL-E. But...

First, the movie is beautiful and moving. The brilliant visuals are in stark contrast with the pedestrian animation of the new Star Wars movie, the previews of which were shown right before this Pixar film. In fact, all of the animated previews before WALL-E looked pretty lame by comparison, except Madagascar II.

And it is very nice to see a movie that is original, not part of a franchise.

I may be turning into a curmudgeon, but the one problem I had with the movie is that everybody is too nice. Even the cockroach is nice.

I usually like human beings, and I am consistently interested in human beings, but I have a lot of trouble in believing in a larger number of human beings who are all just alike -- and all nice. People are different from one another. Put the entire human race on a big spaceship, give them unlimited Whoppers with fries and a Biggie Shake, and some of them are going to rebel, some are going to drop out, some are going to be intellectuals, some malcontents. They won't all be happy campers, the way they are in WALL-E.

Roger Ebert says it's science-fiction. Well, it is what passes for science fiction in the media. In real science fiction, there couldn't be just one cute cockroach. But ten to the twenty-third power cockroaches wouldn't have been as cute. In real science fiction, the junk around Earth would have formed a ring, not a sphere. In real science fiction, in space nobody can hear you make cute sounds.

I enjoyed the movie. I enjoyed it a lot. It is a seriously beautiful film But it is not an exciting film. There is only one villain, and he doesn't appear until more than halfway through the movie. And he turns out to be a pushover. So, lots of sentiment, not much excitement.

But you definitely want to see it.

Cookies throughout the credits.

Copyright © 2008 Rick Norwood

Rick Norwood is a mathematician and writer whose small press publishing house, Manuscript Press, has published books by Hal Clement, R.A. Lafferty, and Hal Foster. He is also the editor of Comics Revue Monthly, which publishes such classic comic strips as Flash Gordon, Sky Masters, Modesty Blaise, Tarzan, Odd Bodkins, Casey Ruggles, The Phantom, Gasoline Alley, Krazy Kat, Alley Oop, Little Orphan Annie, Barnaby, Buz Sawyer, and Steve Canyon.

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