WALL-E* Review

WALL-E film still

Score

It’s a no-brainer to expect a Life Lesson from Pixar. This one, however, resonates like a mortal wound: do something now, before it’s too late.

Mankind is suicidal. And as we consume ourselves into an oblivion of obesity and rampant capitalism, we’re taking the earth down with us. That, says Pixar, should really seal the deal. It’s a dark message delivered by WALL-E, but necessary nonetheless.

The year is 2700 and earth lies deserted, buried beneath a majestic pile of manmade crap. Flexing its monopolistic muscles, corporate goliath 'Buy 'n' Large' has sent everyone into outer space while a taskforce of robots works on a global clean up. But that was 700 years ago and, too indolent to give half-a-shit, the powers that be turned off all the robots and left the world to rot. All the robots, that is, except one.

WALL-E, the only good thing created by humans, dutifully chips away at our mess with heart-wrenching naivety. Collecting knick-knacks from ‘the age of man’, his bewitching curiosity is a powerful statement: what good is ‘stuff’ when we’re long gone?

But this is Pixar, and Pixar means hope. Educated by classic movies on VHS, WALL-E has evolved into a romantic – nothing like the humans we later meet who, too lazy to move, think or reach out to one another, have atrophied into bulbous masses of self-indulgent blubber.

Now he longs for love. And with the arrival of EVE, a robot sent to seek out signs of life, he finally has something to desire. What follows is a poignant reminder that no amount of buy, buy, buy, can satisfy our most basic need: human connection.

That this message comes from two inanimate objects who exchange no more than two words is, quite literally, awe-inspiring. And awesome, in the truest sense, is the only word for the realism on screen: it will burn your eyes, blow your mind and leave your heartstrings at the mercy of Stanton’s tentative touch.

It’s a no-brainer to expect a Life Lesson from Pixar. This one, however, resonates like a mortal wound: do something now, before it’s too late. In eloquent blasts of emotive silence, the message is loud and clear. Let’s hope the kids hear it.

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