Thursday, December 1, 2011

Pixar vs. Dreamworks

Cars 2 has been met with an interesting reaction from my peers. Many of them were disappointed in it, claiming it didn’t live up to Pixar’s standard of quality. Some even said it “felt like a Dreamworks film.” For Pixar geeks, that’s just about the worst insult you can give.

- Aubrey Hansen
Aubrey Hansen (check out her blog!) is a dear friend of mine, who's been slowly educating me in the world of animated film. Aubrey is a great lover of good stories, beautiful animation, and wholesome morals. I blame Aubrey for the fact that I've been getting Disney Princess films out of the library to watch. But that's another rant for later...

I have been superhero movie hunting as a result of writing superheroes for Nano. I knew there were two animated superhero movies, and I couldn't keep them straight, and neither was ever at the library when I checked: Megamind, and The Incredibles. It wasn't until after I watched Megamind that I realized it was the Dreamworks film, and Incredibles was Pixar. For a few moments I was horrified. What had I done, falling in love with a Dreamworks film?

See, I am not an animation geek. I am not a Pixar geek. The number of animated films on my favorites list is one: The Swan Princess. I like Gulliver's Travels too, but it doesn't really qualify for favorites. Suddenly the number of animated films I loved had doubled. I watched Megamind five times in the week before it had to go back to the library. I eventually got Incredibles too, but after watching all the Behind the Scenes videos I discovered the actual movie was too damaged to play. It was weeks before I had another chance to watch it.

So the final assessment?

The Incredibles

Absolutely brilliant premise. I love seeing Superheroes trying to cope in an every day world. It was very cute, especially having child Superheroes. I bet my siblings would love it. But, it simply cannot compare with


"Incredibly handsome criminal genius, and master of all villainy!"

"Are people born wicked? Or do they have wickedness thrust upon them?"

Megamind is Classic Doctor Who (specifically the Doctor/Master relationship) meets Doctor Horrible (without the tragic aspect). It is brilliantly funny, and a bit sad in places too. Unlike Doctor Horrible, Megamind's enmity with Metroman is their version of a friendship, and he gets a happy ending. But it's the only other movie that has ever made me laugh and cry simultaneously. Who would have thought that an alien with a giant blue head could be so... cute?

A lot of people get confused by Megamind. They're not sure what the message of the story is, or whether Megamind really reformed. The "message" is one of my all time favorites in stories and can be summed up neatly:

"It's never too late to do the right thing."

That's the beautiful thing about Megamind, as a character. He tries so hard in the beginning to do the right thing, and learned from negative feedback it wasn't possible for him to ever be popular that way. The second half of the movie teaches him that's not true. It's never too late to do the right thing, and even villains can be sorry and become heroes.

"Did you want to hear me say it? I'll say it. I am sorry."

This review is a bit lopsided, notice? What can I say? I may not be a Pixar geek or an animation lover, I can't discuss the finer points of filmmaking or give a realistic analysis of Dreamworks, but I am absolutely a die-hard fan of Megamind. 

1 comment:

  1. *grins* Thanks so much for using my quote, Katie, and for the really encouraging mention. :)

    I'm so glad you were finally able to watch both movies (I sympathize with you on the state of library DVDs!). I really enjoyed hearing your assessment on both. I've only seen Megamind once or twice, and I've been meaning to rewatch it.

    Now you need to watch more Pixar AND Dreamworks, see? ;)