Pixar sticks to the formula
Pixar Animation Studio
Billy Crystal and John Goodman
June 21st, 2013
In the evolution of kids movies one factor which has greatly changed — the importance of comedy as the selling point.
Pixar does not make this movie a laugher. True it has a number of good jokes, (Art is so enjoyably stoned in this movie) but they are not the focus. The focus is where it should be on Mike, played by Billy Crystal, and Sully, played by John Goodman, and their growth into two best friends.
In the beginning Mike is your typical book worm in university. His goal is to get his degree (in scaring no less) and spends every second of his day memorizing each and every little theorem and strategy the writers could make up, but he is unfortunately useless in practicum.
Sully is clear on the other side of the planet in his character. He is the cool guy. The one who coasted into school based on a legacy and while he can get anything he wants from people — he sucks in a classroom. These failings eventually get them thrown out of their program by their perfectionist dean. They must then work past their differences to get a ragtag team of “scarers” to win the “scare games” to earn their way back into their program.
What this movie does well is setting up and following the Mike and Sully. You see when each character has an epiphany and learns something about themselves. For instance Mike learns that books might have the answer but not how to do that answer. Sully learns that instinct does not mean everything and that just because a person is not popular does not mean you should ignore them.
Near the end when he is given the chance to come back to the popular Roar Omega Roar fraternity he refuses knowing how shallow they truly are. The problem this movie has is that while separately they are well grown — their friendship is not. In two scenes that comes right the hell out of nowhere they bond over their troubles. However that is all the time they get in the movie. The other personal problem I have is that for a movie set in a university there is a serious lack of any ramen/instant noodle jokes.
Despite a couple small troubles this movie is a good movie. It has a couple of good jokes, some nice acting and great animation (as is normal for Pixar). However for me this was a prequel that was not needed. But for a movie that was not needed it is a good movie. I would give this movie a 7/10. Enjoyable but not amazing.