Tuesday, February 27, 2007

What's It All About, Wall-E

Jim Hill have provided a very exciting breakdown of the first act of Andrew Stanton and Pixar's upcoming Wall-E. The short version: this film sounds truly incredible.

The not so short version: amongst other things, the report reveals just what the name Wall-E means, where and when the film is set, who the lead characters are plenty more spoilerific stuff. Below are a few choice excerpts, which you may read at your peril, or you might prefer to simply get the full-fat version straight from the horse's mouth (so to speak).

Our story opens on Earth in the year 2700. Which -- due to the horrible way that humans have treated this planet -- is now just one massive trash heap floating in space.

...mankind has abandoned the planet. We're now all living aboard the Axiom, this massive spaceship that circles high overhead.

...mankind hired this enormous, inept corporation -- Buynlarge -- to supervise the clean-up effort. And that company -- in turn -- sent hundreds of thousands of robots down to the planet's surface to pick up all of the trash.

But Buynlarge's Waste Allocation Load Lifters -- Earth Class units really weren't up to the task. And so -- over the centuries -- these robots slowly began breaking down. Until now... there's only one WALL E left running on the entire planet.

Over the past 700 years, WALL E has gotten ... quirky. To be specific, he's become somewhat self-aware & curious... WALL E has collected an amazing array of human artifacts. Things like a Rubik's Cube, a lightbulb, a Playmate portable ice chest. But this robot's proudest possession is an old VCR. On which he plays -- over and over again -- a VHS copy of Hello, Dolly!

Everything that this robot knows (Or... thinks he knows) about mankind, he's either learned from picking through garbage and/or by watching a 700-year-old Barbra Streisand film.

...one morning... a spaceship almost lands on him. And what should float out of the craft but this sleek new unit, EVE.

It isn't 'til a sudden sandstorm forces WALL E & EVE to seek shelter in the very same vehicle that these two mechanical devices then really begin trying to communicate. With the trash-collecting robot trying to impress this more advanced model by showing off his collection of rare human artifacts.

EVE is recalled. And as she reboards her craft to return to space... WALL E latches onto her craft. And this robot -- along with the rocket -- is hurtled off into space. Which is where the real fun begins ...

...with the exception of the music & the dialogue that we hear coming from that VCR that plays Hello, Dolly! -- that's it. The rest of this section of Pixar's 2008 release is (in effect) a silent movie.

...wait 'til you see what happens to WALL E once he gets on board the Axiom and finds out what has become of mankind. How -- because humans have grown even more lazy in the 700 years that they've been off Earth -- we're all now just these enormous fat blobs who can only move about because we travel in huge floating lounge chairs.

There are so many other aspects... that are daring and/or charming. Take -- for example -- Fred Willard's involvment with this production. Fred plays the president of the Buynlarge Corporation. And this will be the very first time that a really-for-real human performer will appear in a Pixar production.

As I said... what an incredible set-up for what will definitely be an incredible film. I'm almost crippled with excited anticipation.

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