Pixar studios has had an unprecedented run – out of 14 movies, 14 have opened at the top of the box office. All but one have received great to perfect reviews. In the age of big budget spectacles big on action but short on story, that is quite an accomplishment. Every one of these computer animated cartoons has a message; lost innocence, growing up, letting go, etc.and the end result is usually incredibly positive. The one movie to buck the trend, however, was Monsters Inc. It didn’t seem to have a purpose other than to make you laugh while telling a great story, and on that front, it delivered. It was a wonderful film, and had many memorable characters, so why not visit the world again?
Instead of showing us the next adventure in the life of Mike (Billy Crystal) and Sully (John Goodman), we are brought back to when the two were in university and became friends. Well, before they became friends. You see, at first the two are anything but chummy. Mike is great at the classroom part, but not exactly good at scaring. Sully is terrifying, but useless at knowledge based stuff. After a fight, the two are removed from the scare program, effectively killing any chance they have of becoming professional scarers. The two are then forced to join up with a fraternity made up of unwanted monsters and compete in the Scare Games. If they win, they will be allowed back into the scare program.
Having young versions of the characters we know and love works amazingly well here. It gives us a new layer to their personalities, and thereby gives us more to enjoy. Crystal and Goodman do a fantastic job, as expected. The one problem I had is that at times, the movie gets a little too sensitive for its own good. I expect heartfelt moments in Pixar films, but there was more than necessary here. Other than that, however, I have zero to complain about. While I didn’t enjoy it more than the original, I do put it on equal footing. I laughed more than I expected to, and that’s all I was hoping for.
Have you seen Monsters University? What are your thoughts? Post a reply below.