No Right ExplanationYou've Got a Friend In Me
Our debate from last week was one of those impossible debates. There are so few that fall into this category as there honestly was no way to narrow Pixar's glorious library down to just two definitive choices, which we did attempt for a brief few moments before deciding our episode needed to be non-conventional and include several.
But that of course didn't please everyone since we had more than a few commenters ask us very earnestly, "Where was Monsters, Inc.?" "Did you forget about A Bug's Life?" "Why no love for Ratatouille?" I feel for these people as I love all of those movies as well and could easily argue for every single one if asked, but were three and a half separate Pixar debates not good enough for one episode?
A few others would say, "No, that is not good enough." At least one comment suggested this be a special half-hour episode, but the result would have been largely the same with Kyle and I throwing our hands up and saying that we just couldn't decide, though if the editing took any longer, Dan would surely have gone insane.
Pixar is impossible to argue regarding "best" for much the same reason as the Best Animated Disney Movie was neigh impossible in that "best" usually comes down to which movie you have the most connection to from your own childhood. Pixar is unique as most of us grew up with it, specifically starting at Andy's age for the first Toy Story and carrying on perfectly for the two sequels, so more than having a favorite, each movie generally represents a different emotion for us all.
With Toy Story, you have a fun, child-like wonder about the world, as well as the worry about becoming obsolete, something that carries throughout the trilogy. A Bug's Life is great for when you feel like getting reminded of the power of many voices together and how you can do anything if you work together. Finding Nemo is a great father-son movie that instills that feeling of wanting to be independent from your parents without actually losing them. Monsters, Inc. is the movie about already being the best but realizing that isn't necessarily what you need to be. The Incredibles is the very classic desire to relive the glory days. Ratatouille is the story about being the best, but being refused a chance. Wall-E is a story of hope. Up is a story of acceptance. Cars is about the changing world and nostalgia for the small town charms. Brave is a wonderful mother-daughter dynamic that we rarely get.
You add all those together and it becomes too difficult to decide which is your favorite, mostly because your favorite changes with your mood at the moment. As of now, I don't think I could honestly decide on one or two favorites. I can't even give a top 5 ranking here. I love them all for entirely different reasons, again, depending on my mood.
I do get the general distain for Cars 2 as that's a movie that was very clearly made because the first was so popular in terms of merchandise, but why people dislike or even hate Brave is far beyond my comprehension. Did you not see the same movie I saw? People saying, "It's good, but it's not Pixar's best" is no excuse to then say it's a bad movie. It's different and somewhat less progressive than the others, but it was still an amazing movie. Don't forget that you probably aren't a kid anymore. Imagine how that movie would have looked to you as a young child or if it came out a year after Toy Story.
Plus, when we're getting to the point that people are questioning whether Dreamworks is starting to do better movies than Pixar now, that can only be good, not because it implies that Pixar is getting worse (their shorts can prove unquestionably that they are still masters of their craft), but that Dreamworks has been getting better, and that is easily a good thing.
Now let's just hope Toy Story 4 manages to keep the dream alive. Monsters University absolutely will though, no question about it.