For at least the third year in a row, our family enjoyed a new Pixar DVD release on Thanksgiving Night.
This year WALL-E followed in the footsteps of CARS (2006) and RATATOUILLE (2007).
I enjoyed WALL-E, although I wasn't as swept away by it as many reviewers. I appreciated the creativity and artistry of those who made it -- and had fun picking out influences from all sorts of films, including E.T., 2001, and STAR WARS -- but, let's face it, the worlds depicted in the film are depressing.
As a musicals fan, for me the best parts of the movie were the ongoing references to HELLO, DOLLY! (1969). The film's startling opening, with Michael Crawford singing the beginning of my favorite DOLLY song, "Put On Your Sunday Clothes," was just about my favorite part of the movie. What makes it even better is that for years an instrumental version of this song has been part of Disneyland's Main Street music loop; now it is truly a "Disney song"! Having another DOLLY song close the movie was a lovely touch. While watching the movie, I couldn't help but wonder what Michael Kidd and Gene Kelly would think if they were able to see the film and its depiction of robots mesmerized by their work.
Sound effects wizard Ben Burtt provides the "voice" of the title character. Pixar regular John Ratzenberger is back once again (check out his very interesting website); he'll also be in the cast of Pixar's next movie, UP, along with Christopher Plummer and Ed Asner. Fred Willard appears onscreen in WALL-E, while Kathy Najimy and Sigourney Weaver voice characters.
WALL-E can be seen on DVD in a 3-Disc Special Edition or a Single-Disc Edition. I chose the 3-Disc Edition as my youngest son, in particular, is fascinated by "making of" and special effects featurettes. The set includes the 87-minute documentary THE PIXAR STORY (2007) which should be very enjoyable.