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Animation and Anime

A Very Brief Reaction From A Test Screening Of WALL-E!

Hey, everyone. ”Moriarty” here. My son is absolutely smitten with the WALL-E trailer. He imitates all of WALL-E’s moves, he can do the voice from the end of the trailer, and he now calls every toy robot in the house by the same name. I can’t wait until we can see this one together next year. I’m always of mixed minds about seeing a test screening of a Pixar film. On the one hand, I’d love to see WALL-E right now. On the other hand, that candy-coated finish to each of their films is part of what makes the Pixar movies such irresistible pop art. Still, I’m curious, and if anyone else was at this WALL-E screening, let us know what you thought, too...
Hey Moriarty, big fan of the site and everything you guys do. Just thought I'd pass on a little pre-preview of a movie coming out next year called "WALL-E". It stars a small trash-compacting robot, named, what else? Wall-E, he's a bit of a magpie and his invincible pet roach "Hal". It's set in the late 2700's where Corporate America, specifically a company called "Buy-N-Large" and it's global CEO Fred Willard, have taken over. But the pollution and amount of trash became a little too much to handle and turned the world into what I imagine certain parts of China to look like on a bad day. So everyone left hops aboard a cruise-ship style spaceliner circa 2080 and goes on a space-cation while Buy-N-Large stays behind to clean everything up. There's very little dialog throughout the movie as the main character(s) are service bots (mostly R2-D2esque beep-boops), but the use of physical comedy and body-language is done in a very fresh way that keeps you captivated throughout. It's all CGI as you've guessed by now, except for Fred Willard who makes some very brief but memorable live action appearances in video form standing in front of a pedestal with a Buy-N-Large presidential crest behind him. It's a very poignant look at the world and what one possible future could be, without being preachy or in-your-face about its message. And I gotta say the toy-line for this has definite potential. I went into this screening blind, no one knew what we were going to see, just that it was computer animated, and I gotta say pretty much everyone was pleasantly surprised. Only a couple people seemed disappointed but they were easy to spot as the exact people the movie were picking on. Hope this helps spread the word and the hype, and call me "Larry Talbot" if you print this. Keep up the good work and best of luck to everyone!

Readers Talkback
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  • Nov. 5, 2007, 12:36 a.m. CST


    by Mister Man

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 12:36 a.m. CST

    No way I'm first, is there?


    Doubt it.

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 12:36 a.m. CST

    Knew it.


    Third! And Second!

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 12:40 a.m. CST


    by Pound Sand

    A brief google search could've provided the source for this screening review, and I suspect it did. Come on, you don't have to do this for WALL-E. It's a slam dunk.

  • I'm calling bullshit on this.

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 1:06 a.m. CST

    Live action apperance?

    by jimmy_009

    Can someone explain this? Did the reviewer just phrase this wrong?

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 1:13 a.m. CST

    no bull

    by joeguy

    I was at the screening last week, and this review is pretty accurate. The cut they showed us was a work in progress, with bits in various stages of rendering and some story boards. Fred Willard was live action. It works though as he just shows up on video screens. And he's great as the Global Pres/CEO. Reviewer should've mentioned, the film is really just a love story. Albiet with robots. Anyway, great film, can't wait to see the finished version.

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 1:19 a.m. CST

    I saw....

    by Redfive!

    the comic con footage and its SPECTACULAR.The movie is gonna rock and this review is lazy.

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 1:19 a.m. CST

    But does he have the press release to share with all of us?

    by Kirbymanly

    Because that's what this sounds like

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 2:25 a.m. CST

    the CGI is done already?

    by Mike_D

    and its due out next year?

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 3:20 a.m. CST

    I was there too!

    by just some nerd

    When it was announced that we were seeing Wall-E the audience reaction was one of pleasent surprise. The clapping aftwerwards wasn't so shabby either. I wanted to add that its more of a love story than any other Pixar film, and its also the most socially conscience. If McDonalds dares make Happy Meals out of this it will be the most ironic advertising campaign ever.

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 3:29 a.m. CST

    Looks awesome

    by spud mcspud

    But let's face it: America is the land that brought us "Do as I say, not as I do". I don't doubt there are a lot of social consciences at Pixar, but Disney will take the business back to the heart attack-inducing fast food chains, tying in to Happy Meals and God knows what else just to squeeze more millions out of this movie. Because no matter how many WALL-E type movies we get, the big businesses will not figure out what the messages are - only how many millions of dollars they bring in. Which makes WALL-E a prophetic look at the future, not just a cute robot movie.

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 3:38 a.m. CST

    the trailers are garbage

    by aicndoesntwantmorecowbell

    i wanna see the movie not fuckin hear pixar talk about it

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 4:16 a.m. CST

    this review sounds fishy

    by aicndoesntwantmorecowbell

    the cgi is done with how long to go? i thought the cg was what usually make movies take some fuckin long to finish.

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 4:24 a.m. CST

    The CGI IS NOT DONE - please read more carefully

    by ShadowMaker

    Guys, if some of you would have followed how animated movies are made, than you'd know that the reason they hold screenings like this (with storyboards, test renders etc in place of the final footage) is so that they can find out if story beats are working, where the slow spots in the movie are etc. THEN they know what parts they want to render at 24 hours a FRAME (!!!) you don't want to render a scene for two weeks and then find out the joke/point of the scene just doesn't work. This has always been the case in the past as well, because having 200 ladies ink and paint a scene only to have to throw it away later just isn't good business sense.

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 4:25 a.m. CST

    The Fred Willard stuff

    by TattooedBillionaire

    reminds me a lot of the manager at the beginning of Chaplin's Modern Times. This can't come soon enough.

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 5:23 a.m. CST

    i meant "so fuckin long to finish"

    by aicndoesntwantmorecowbell


  • Nov. 5, 2007, 5:24 a.m. CST


    by aicndoesntwantmorecowbell

    when is this coming out?

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 6:30 a.m. CST

    "and turned the world into what I imagine certain parts of China

    by VinnyMac666

    that didn't make this guy sound at all uneducated, bigoted or anything like that... But I guess we all knew that China was nothing but giant mounds of garbage. A huge wasteland do uninhabitable that they've taken to the stars. Right?

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 6:58 a.m. CST


    by banbury

    This review is impossible to read without getting a headache. Please spend less time at the movies and more time with the Chicago Manual of Style.

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 7:24 a.m. CST

    This review sounds too polished

    by ATARI

    This time, I mean it when I say, "PLANT!"

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 7:42 a.m. CST

    Unhappy Meals

    by VadersCrotchDoor

    Not for nothing, but Disney and McDonalds severed their tie-in agreement last year. I'm sure some other purveyor of grease and salt will be tied in with this, but it probably won't be the clown. Too bad, though. I'd almost certainly let my kid eat there if it meant his Happy Meal included a Fred Willard toy.

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 7:51 a.m. CST

    Why do Pixar DVDs suck now?

    by Osmosis Jones

    Cars, and now Ratatouille have has SUCK-ASS 1-disc DVDs without even any commentaries.

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 7:54 a.m. CST

    "and turned the world into what I imagine certain parts of China

    by Windowlicker74

    sorry, vinnymac, the guy doesn't sound uneducted just because he's stating that China has a huge pollution problem( and some other problems as well. Nepal anyone?). It's not because they host the Olymics that the're all nice and clean. So please stop calling people bigots 'cause their opinions don't align with your PC little mind

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 8:17 a.m. CST

    The "China" comment was unnecessary.

    by C Legion

    In ten years time China could well be the most powerful nation in the world. It's already well on its way.

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 8:24 a.m. CST


    by Gatsbys West Egg Omlet

    i LOVE a lonely robot story. this will rule the world. <p>and i wish i had a son to take and see it with. that would be rad. how long does the adoption process take?

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 8:27 a.m. CST

    and stop bitching about the China bit...

    by Gatsbys West Egg Omlet

    we all say dumb shit all the time.

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 8:55 a.m. CST

    This is not true...

    by Migwit

    Mark Kermode when reviewing Ratatouile was insinuating that all Pixar movies were test screened.. Pixar replied the following week that "Pixar NEVER market test their movies" Sounds like someones telling fibs.

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 9:10 a.m. CST

    This movie already gives me the creeps..........

    by Nice Marmot

    ...cause it makes me think of Heart-Beeps. Anybody remember that scary mess of a robots in love flick? All kidding aside, I'm stoked for this movie & it can't come soon enough. And for the love of God, can we ignore the damn China comment? I swear, AICN needs to create a "Political Debate" section. I don't mind political debates, but I don't need them forced upon me by smart-ass fanboys when I'm just trying to read about a damn Pixar film.

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 10:33 a.m. CST

    i agree with the bs call

    by irrelevntelefant

    I haven't seen the screening, but do have an inside connection to the project and either this guy googled info on the movie to fake a review or he just sucks at writing a decent review. no mention of the love story at all (which is a big driving force in the movie) the real irony will be when the toys are on the shelves of walmart (buy-n-large)...ask him what musical movie is referenced heavily throughout the film, bet he doesn't know...

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 10:36 a.m. CST

    China's A Dump

    by Saluki

    Why ignore it? It's common knowledge.

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 11:05 a.m. CST

    who did pixar rippoff to make this?

    by ironic_name

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 12:04 p.m. CST

    Sounds like a plant.

    by Barry Egan

    A "big fan" of the site thinks we don't know who Wall-E is?

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 12:08 p.m. CST

    Sooooo, this movie will be about....

    by ccchhhrrriiisssm

    ...GLOBAL WARMING? How surprisingly unoriginal. I suppose that Fred Willard will play the role of Al Gore? Does anyone smell something? I think that I might have stepped on a pile of unchecked propaganda. Peeyouuuu!

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 12:14 p.m. CST

    What the fuck is a Wall-E?

    by jeffrex007

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 12:37 p.m. CST

    I suspect that the plot will include:

    by ccchhhrrriiisssm

    All of the humans have abandoned the Earth due to global warming and environmental disasters. ... .... ... Wall-E is the last, lonely robot on the planet, programmed to pick up after mankind's trash. His hundreds of years of loneliness has caused Wall-E to develop emotions. ... .... ... He will get emotionally attached to something, and will either go in search of the humans or this emotionally attached thing. He will discover that humans have either died off, or have evolved into lesser life forms because of their laziness or destruction of the environment. ... .... ... Wall-E will realize the ugliness of the present condition, and will attempt to construct a time machine into the past. He will arrive in Earth past to warn human beings about the future, and urge them to worship the likes of Al Gore and Barbara Streisand. ... .... ... Mankind listens to the little robot and he disappears -- because the future changes. ... .... ... Kids cry in the movie theatre and urge Mommy and Daddy to stop destroying their future. ... .... ... America becomes the "green nation" of Al Gore's wet environmental dreams, and the Government seizes control of all aspects of our environment. The cost to consumers is STAGGERING, but Gore and his liberal cronies believe that it is worth the cost to taxpayers and national security. ... .... ... China, on the other hand, could care less about global warming. They become the world's sole superpower in 2040, and take over the United States by way of a hostile corporate takeover (your country's fossil fuels or your life). China now has room to expand its 1.5 billion citizens, and finally lifts the 1 child maximum. Chinese men discover that white women are hot and fertile. The world evolves into one very productive but communistically socialized race. ... .... ... Is this the same old tired propaganda that Al Gore and his daughter pooped out in a couple episodes of FUTURAMA?

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 2:08 p.m. CST

    glad to hear global warming is just propaganda...

    by irrelevntelefant

    i always liked aerosal deodorant better, really gets up in the ol' pits nice and good....

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 2:11 p.m. CST

    oh yeah, china is dumpy

    by irrelevntelefant

    was in bejing and xian 2 years ago. the pollution is so bad, i actually looked foward to getting back to l.a.

  • You gotta love the irony of that. A movie about big corporations trashing the planet will have big corporations making millions of plastic toys that will trash the planet. I guess we'll have immediate feedback of Chrism's brainwashing fear. If the movie message takes hold, the kids won't want the toys. If they want the cheap plastic toys in the big fancy disposable packaging, the message was rejected. (Sorry about the T.P.)

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 2:35 p.m. CST

    no more disney happy meals

    by Gengar

    disney cut ties with mcdonalds earlier this year, hence the 'bee movie' and 'shrek' happy meals.

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 2:46 p.m. CST


    by ccchhhrrriiisssm

    Global warming is not propaganda. However, the rhetoric coming from Al Gore's "Inconvenient Truth" is the essence of propaganda. Have you seen the amount of scientists who have SUED to have their name removed from the film? In 15 years, we will all discover that much of the things blamed for global warming were simply wrongly accused. Global warming is the result of gravitational tugs on the planet as it completes its revolution around the sun. Some years are warmer than others, some are cooler. This is called a CYCLE and is observed on other planets (like Mars). If Al Gore had his way, he would allow the government to force adherence to strict standards that would eventually force Americans to live in the dirt. No cars, no hamburgers, no fish. As he flies around in his private jet and lives in his multi-million dollar mansions, he is willing to force the rest of us to purchase "carbon credits" in order to cool down the planet. We need to tell Gore where he can stuff his carbon credits!

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 2:57 p.m. CST

    Aerosol Cans Destroyed the Ozone Layer


    They didn't cause global warming. There was some concern about their contribution to global cooling in the 70s. Please keep your disaster de jours straight. Thanks!

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 3:02 p.m. CST

    R2D2 Made Sweet Love to Number 5 from Short Circuit


    And gave birth to Wall-E. Although Number 5 insisted that E.T. was actually Wall-E's daddy.<br><br>Walllll-Eeeeeee . . .

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 3:13 p.m. CST

    'China is my future' - Phillip Bauer

    by performingmonkey

    There's nothing more to say.

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 3:34 p.m. CST


    by irrelevntelefant

    there's bullshit propaganda flying on both sides of this issue. but there is more than just a CYCLE going on. we as humans are having an impact on the environment. i guess those nasa satelitte images of the polar ice caps receding are just photoshopped? politics aside, whats wrong with wanting giant corporations to be environmentally responsible? what is wrong with finding cleaner alternatives to fossil fuel? recycling? i am all for less government, but i also believe in taking responsibility for our actions. maybe the planet doesn't need saving, but it certainly needs to be cleaned up.

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 3:35 p.m. CST

    back on topic

    by irrelevntelefant

    i am looking forward to this movie...

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 3:40 p.m. CST thank you

    by irrelevntelefant

    i'm stocking up on foot/jock itch spray at costco as we speak... there might not be global warming, but my boys are toasty...

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 4:16 p.m. CST

    Pixar = lame

    by alienindisguise

    They haven't made anything worth a shit since A Bug's Life

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 4:56 p.m. CST

    fred willard action figure

    by irrelevntelefant

    would be fucking cool...

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 5:05 p.m. CST

    PLant? I dunno but that wasn't much of a review

    by finky089

    And, yeah, a Fred Willard action figure woul dbe TREMENDOUS!

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 5:07 p.m. CST

    Oh come one, alienindisguise

    by finky089

    What about Toy Story 2? Those two movies are still Pixar's absolute best.

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 5:24 p.m. CST

    I sort of resent calling

    by Novaman5000

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 5:26 p.m. CST

    I sort of resent calling Pixar "pop art"

    by Novaman5000

    I mean, they're pretty great films, I think. Maybe not the be all and end all but they will stand up over time and make sense in 100 years. Nothing very "pop" culture about them. Pop implies shallow. Shrek, now that's pure "pop".

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 5:51 p.m. CST

    Why the Need For an Edit Feature?

    by Jonas Grumpy

    As I type these words, they appear in a little box on my screen. I am able to read them as they appear. When I make a mistake, or wish to rephrase something, I hit the "delete" button until what's no longer needed goes away, then I type some more. Also, I can use the arrow keys or the mouse to move the cursor. (A little blue scroll button on the side of this box allows me to move up and down the copy, as well.) When I am done typing, I re-read the entire message before I click on the "post talkback" button, altering text where necessary. Am I the only one who is able to do any of this? Is it because I'm using Safari on a Mac? Is everyone else typing blind, unable to see what they're about to post as it's being written? Doesn't anyone else proofread before posting? Is commenting speed of such importance that everyone hammers out a message just as quickly as they can, posting it before it was complete? Am I the only one who uses more than two fingers while typing, and who doesn't have to look down at their keyboard while doing so? I don't understand the need or desire for an edit feature on this site. Explain, please!

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 6:42 p.m. CST

    alienindisguise = stupid

    by slone13

    A Bug's Life? Fuck off. That shit was Pixar's weakest by far. Now go stuff your head back up your ass.

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 8:04 p.m. CST

    Oh bullshit.... Trash!

    by ThePilgrim

    Most of our Trash is no longer dumped into Landfills. It's recycled. Nealy all of it now. The older Landfills that are covered over, release methane gas and thats used as a power source. So big time fucking bullshit all around on this wasted message about waste and trash killing the planet. We are already fighting and winning that war now. How in the fuck in 600 years will this not be a Won War!?!?! We ain't wasting no more. We are changing over and now when your trash is picked up it goes to a sorting station that separates organic from plastic metal and paper, and all of it can be reused. If your's is still going to a landfill no worries. It wont be long before this is over. and that land fill will create natural power when it's covered over. Through the methane gas it releases.

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 8:23 p.m. CST

    my very brief review: i saw a screening and...

    by future help


  • Nov. 5, 2007, 9:27 p.m. CST

    US power in 2700s?

    by Drath

    At the moment, that seems optimistic seeing as we've entered the 21st century in much the same way Great Britain entered the 20th. I suppose we could lose the #1 spot and then regain it by the 2700s though. I suspect the title of Most Powerful Nation on Earth is something that's going to be passed from country to country a little faster as globalization increases, and possibly it'll get harder to indentify at the same time. I'm probably giving this more thought than I'm supposed to for this movie (duh, ya think?). I hope this movies works for me. CARS was probably my least favorite Pixar movie (I say it was weaker than A Bug's Life), and that also had machines as the stars. I hope this doesn't play like The Brave Little Toaster in 3D.

  • Nov. 5, 2007, 10:14 p.m. CST

    ThePilgrim" We ain't wasting no more" ???

    by irrelevntelefant

    read some statistics and then tell me we are winning the war on trash.

  • Nov. 6, 2007, 1:13 a.m. CST

    What is a WALL-E? Let me tell you...

    by ElectricDreams

    WALL-E stands for; Waste Allocation Load Lifter - Earth Class. Basically he's a trash compactor on wheels. Wait til you see some of the marketing Disney is doing for this film, the interactive theater standee will knock your socks off, and Imagineering is building a life-size, working WALL-E that will tour theme parks and talk shows with Director Andrew Stanton. I worked on this movie and it's truly spectacular! -ED

  • Nov. 6, 2007, 3:38 a.m. CST


    by drew mcweeny

    ... of course they test screen their films. They always have. We've been running reviews from early screenings of Pixar films for years now. <P>Seriously... is "plant" the only word some of you know? Who mistreated you so badly in your lives that you refuse to believe in anything or anyone? Do you really think that people are out there inventing screenings of films that never happened just to impress you? <P>We received independent verification of the time and location of this screening BEFORE it happened, so when this review arrived, it wasn't a shock.

  • Nov. 6, 2007, 5:33 a.m. CST

    man was cars lame

    by aicndoesntwantmorecowbell

    almost forgot how dissapointing that movie was.

  • Nov. 6, 2007, 9:04 a.m. CST


    by ccchhhrrriiisssm

    Again, please READ the post before commenting on what you think I wrote. I didn't say that global warming wasn't happening. I did, however, question the accuracy of Al Gore's propaganda film (Irrelevant Hypocrisy, err, Truth). There is NOT a consensus amongst scientists concerning the CAUSES of global warming. It is easy (and ignorant) to run around blaming cars, beef cows and air conditioners. So before we run around crucifying people for living a civilized lifestyle, we need to first understand precisely what is causing the meltdown (and whether or not this sort of meltdown has occurred in the past). Is it the result of human produced machines -- or do these gases come from elsewhere (like the CO2 emissions from 1.5 billion Chinamen and 1 billion Indians)? Have we looked into solutions other than Gore's ridiculous "carbon credits" (which place the wealthy at a far greater advantage over the poor)? This issue is FAR from clear, even though FAT-MAN Gore is enjoying the BJs he receives from extreme left activists.

  • Nov. 6, 2007, 9:07 a.m. CST


    by ccchhhrrriiisssm

    I will definitely watch this film! It will probably be just as entertaining as the environmental penguin film -- even though I wanted to go and kill some sea lions and protest against Chicken of the Sea for eating all of those "helpless penguins." Besides, Finding Nemo is the best animated film...ever.

  • Nov. 6, 2007, 9:51 a.m. CST


    by irrelevntelefant

    i agree, finding nemo is great... also, i don't think gore gets bjs, he seems more like a phone sex guy.

  • Nov. 6, 2007, 10:21 a.m. CST


    by irrelevntelefant

    I'm not disputing there was a screening, or whether the reviewer saw the film. my source who is very close to this movie read the review and before even seeing the talkback, commented how something just seemed weird about the review-as in this person is possibly associated with the film in some way (hence the term plant). if they are not a plant, then they need to work on their review writing skills. i, like stephen colbert, listen to my gut... my gut says plant or no plant, there is just something "off" about the review (it also says 'lay off grilled peanut butter and bacon sandwiches')

  • Nov. 6, 2007, 11:32 a.m. CST


    by TiPPiDa

    GET CHEVY A PART IN THIS!...... Seriously though... WOW.. I hope the movie is infinitely more entertaining than the talkback!.. Its funny, You can always tell the trolls and attention seekers. Anyone who says "PIXAR MOVIES SUCK" is gagging for attention and nothing more... mission accomplished douche. AND WHO GIVES A SHIT THAT PIXAR RIP OFF OLD STORYLINES.. at least theyre not completely blatant, with the exception of "Cars", which stunk on ice anyway.. Its not a question of originality, if writers were original all the time, we'd get about 8 percent of the productivity in entertainment industry we have now, and I mean that in a bad way, because I'm picking you could scrap just about every scripted show on TV, and 90 percent of all movies. Pixar TELL A STORY in a way that seems fresh and new to me, and that alone is worth the price of admission in my book... Loved both Toy Story movies, Loved Monsters Inc., Loved Nemo, LOVED the Incredibles, REALLY LOVED Ratatouille, hope the trend continues with WALL-E and UP.

  • Nov. 6, 2007, 3:56 p.m. CST

    Jonas Grumpy

    by finky089

    because "proofreading is for suckers"

  • Nov. 6, 2007, 4:57 p.m. CST

    i secont funky89

    by irrelevntelefant

    som of us prefer streem of consciusness righting as supposed to being anal retentif with our postes. SHOUT AT YA BOI- HOLLA