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WALL-E Review

Peori August 17, 2009 User blog:Peori

Perhaps the greatest sci-fi thriller in ages, straight from the masterminds at Pixar comes WALL-E, an epic tale and Pixar's most compelling to date.

The film starts out showing an image of the Earth -- Earth in 800 years, to be exact. Immediately the viewers are treated to the happy showtunes of "Put On Your Sunday Clothes", as the current state of the Earth is revealed. Gloomy and forlorn, the post-apocalyptic planet is now home to a little trash compactor named WALL-E and his cockroach friend left with the task of cleaning up Earth, a job which he pursues with a strangely charming naive optimism. Going out each day to compact more trash and occasionally saving anything he deems interesting, his greatest treasure is a tape of the 1960's musical, Hello, Dolly!.

WALL-E is the sweetest robot you'll ever see in a sci-fi film. With his big, binocular-shaped eyes and utterly depressing occupation as the last being on Earth, he becomes lovable from the very beginning. Curious and caring, his many years of being on the Earth have caused a slight "programming error" -- he has formed a personality.

One day, he encounters a strange red light on the ground, and begins to chase it, which turns out to be one of thousands of lights cast by a probe ship's landing. The ship, leaving behind a high-tech modern robot known as EVE, blasts off, as WALL-E curiously watches the robot girl at work. EVE isn't any bit too kind, and is even quite aggressive at the start of the film. She, however, slowly builds a relationship with WALL-E, as the two end up saving Earth and all of humanity by the end of the film.

The humans have all been sent to space on a huge star cruiser known as the "Axiom". (The entire concept of humans fledding from the uninhabitable Earth to a ship is a very similar concept to Noah's Ark in the Bible, just one of many subtle biblical references.) Obese and completely reliant upon the robots that serve them, the overindulgent lifestyle of the Axiom has turned humanity into a mass of laziness. WALL-E and EVE themselves are much more human in personality than the humans aboard the Axiom.

The songs from Hello, Dolly!, "Put On Your Sunday Clothes" and "It Only Takes a Moment", are ingeniously used throughout the film and never become tiresome. WALL-E learns from "It Only Takes a Moment" how to hold hands, the robot's way of showing he loves someone, as he is shown constantly trying to hold EVE's hand (and more often than not, failing). There is something genuinely sweet about WALL-E and EVE's relationship, something that remains unseen in most modern cinema. Even conversations held between the two, though they usually don't contain more words than just their names, feel like actual conversations. Props to the folks at Pixar for making the film mostly silent but still retaining all the charm of a movie with dialogue.

The juxtaposition of the old tape recording of Hello, Dolly! right next to the eerie futuristic landscape is yet another subtle ingenuity in the film that has a big impact on the overall emotion, and I’m sure WALL-E has caused a lot of viewers to go watch Hello, Dolly!, if anything to hear those two songs played again.

In short: WALL-E is a highly entertaining and original movie, no doubt one of the greatest of 2008. I conclude this review with giving the film a score of five stars.

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