Friday, October 7, 2022


June 24, 2011 by · 5 Comments 

For the first time, most of the major critics have taken the wrecking hammer to a Pixar movie. The movie in question is Cars 2. And several critics do give it the kind of review Pixar and Disney executives are accustomed to. Roger Ebert in the Chicago Sun-Times, for example, calls it “fun” and remarks, “At a time when some ‘grown-up’ action films are relentlessly shallow and stupid, here is a movie with such complexity that even the cars sometimes have to pause and explain it to themselves.” Wesley Morris in the Boston Globe regards it as an improvement over the 2006 original. “The original movie has been debugged and rethought,” he writes. “It’s funnier and sharper. It’s just as long, yet leaner.” And Kenneth Turan in the Los Angeles Times observes, “It’s Pixar Animation’s 25th anniversary, and the studio has kicked back and given a present to itself and its ever-expanding audience with the genially entertaining Cars 2.” But these represent a minority report. Peter Howell in the Toronto Star notes that at one point in the movie an evil car commands, “Embrace your inner lemon!” Howell comments: “Pixar boldly follows the same path.”What is lacking here is Pixar’s most notable characteristic: a compelling, clever story and boundless heart,” writes Claudia Puig in USA Today. A.O. Scott in the New York Times comments similarly that the movie “is notably lacking in soul or sublimity.” Cars 2 “Puts the Drag in Racing,” headlines Kyle Smith’s review in the New York Post. Smith dismisses the movie as “dull, rote and humorless.” On the other hand, Carrie Rickey in the Philadelphia Inquirer comments on the breakneck pacing of the movie. “This Pixar effort has an engine where its heart should be,” she remarks. And Michael Phillips in the Chicago Tribune takes a sledgehammer to the movie. “Despite its technical and design finesse, this ranks as Pixar’s weakest project to date, as well as the first from the animation powerhouse that can be described as craven,” he writes.