Unless

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Unless

MovieBob ponders the latest Dr. Seuss adapatation The Lorax.

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Long story short: yeah, it's exactly what you think it is...

I've never read the book but the TV special intrigues me. I may be able to find a copy of the book too so there's that. I understand now why Bob was so pissed about The Lorax selling an SUV...it's a slap in the face of the author and it spits on the source material.

Am I the only one who has noticed that Bob seems determined to never talk about Despicable Me seeing as that was a large part of the marketings ads and that it may be the source for his anger against the changes made about the Once-ler and townspeople?

The pull of Despicable Me was that the protagonist was a bad guy but he had his reasons and was someone who really could not be blamed for the more cruel things he did after Act 2 and 3. Seeing that, and this new thing being the popular thing at the moment, the company decided it could work again and it did, being a huge success in the box office and the company gets another victory under the belt while the world waits for Despicable Me 2.

Man, screw this "It's going to be too dark for the children!" nonsense. Such mentality breeds emotionally vulnerable people. It think the story should have been left as it is. If the kids want to ask awkward questions - then that's even better. It's disgusting they change something like that just so that some asshole doesn't have to hurt his brain trying to explain complex ideas and concepts to his little kid.

Ehhh, his poetry could use a bit of work, but this was still an interesting article. I want to read the book more than watch the movie though.

Saw this with my son last week, no awkward questions for me.
However, I really liked the Once-ler song, other than being a pretty good song, I think it represented the character well in that more often than not people like this don't see what they are doing as a bad thing and convince themselves that they are doing the right thing. Actually this makes for a better "bad guy" as you can relate to them. (My opinion at least) Other than that I thought Lorax was okay.

I remember reading the Lorax... but I barely remember Butter Battle. It sound familiar and I think I read it once, but I can't seem to recall it... Either way, I won't be going to see the new Lorax movie. I can tell from the trailers that it's going to disappoint me.

Jenx:
Man, screw this "It's going to be too dark for the children!" nonsense. Such mentality breeds emotionally vulnerable people. It think the story should have been left as it is. If the kids want to ask awkward questions - then that's even better. It's disgusting they change something like that just so that some asshole doesn't have to hurt his brain trying to explain complex ideas and concepts to his little kid.

Plus it seems like everyone forgot that a bunch of kids grew up with darker kids movies and turned into fine adults, The Land Before Time was pretty depressing, so was Fievels American Tail, The Secret of NIMH, That suicide song in The Brave Little Toaster, etc and no one made an issue out of those

As Bob pointed out........ we all saw Old Yeller as kids, we are still here, kids can handle hard truths, and in fact if they don't they won't learn and grow and become responsible adults. So yeah, I guess what I'm saying here is they really screwed the pooch on this one.

And yet fox still went nuts over the film......... remember this?:

I love how the source material is more anti-industrial than this film and yet Lou refers to it as "Beloved" but then he calls The Lorax film "insidious"

Furioso:
The Land Before Time was pretty depressing

Oh thanks, now I remember the death of Little Foot's Mom...

pbbbbbbt *sigh* i really hate this. Not just the Film, but this culture. Dr. Suess stories always, ALWAYS, have a lesson to teach. And when they get made into movies these days the story gets fumbled and the lesson is lost. I'm waiting for the Sneetches to get made see how they screw that up.

Whatever they haven't f***ed with the books yet. Keep the studio pulp mess away from my children i'll just read them the stories.

Even if this was an awesome movie, that did a wonderful job with the source material, I'd likely boycott it on the grounds of its numerous product tie-ins like SUVs and disposable diapers. Although I suppose it's better that a movie that avoided the point of the book also engaged in such offensive deals.

Call me crazy, but I was expecting a cock-up of precisely these tremendous proportions when I saw the words "From the creators of Despicable Me" on the poster.

Hollywood, Hollywood
That's who lifted the whole point away

I'll stick with the original thank you very much.

Furioso:
Man, screw this "It's going to be too dark for the children!" nonsense. Such mentality breeds emotionally vulnerable people. It think the story should have been left as it is. If the kids want to ask awkward questions - then that's even better. It's disgusting they change something like that just so that some asshole doesn't have to hurt his brain trying to explain complex ideas and concepts to his little kid.

Jenx:
Plus it seems like everyone forgot that a bunch of kids grew up with darker kids movies and turned into fine adults, The Land Before Time was pretty depressing, so was Fievels American Tail, The Secret of NIMH, That suicide song in The Brave Little Toaster, etc and no one made an issue out of those

It's not the kids who can't deal with it.

In other words, it's a terrible, gutless movie that didn't deserve to make as much money as it did.

MB202:
Butter Battle

People on one side of a wall like their toast butter side up, while the other side likes butter side down (fucking weirdos). Both sides don't want the other side corrupting their side, so one side starts off by sending a guard with nothing. Other side sends a guard with a rock to throw. First side retaliates with a guy with a slingshot, and so on until they both have very "destructive" weaponry aimed at each other all for differences in ideology. The End. Obviously a story about how the Cold War was stupid.

This bothers me more than it should, I think. I really liked The Lorax as a kid, and that animated show left an impression on me for a long time. The ending in particular is powerful and ambiguous, and I'm not happy that the movie ditched that for a more generic happy ending.

I don't get the "kids can't handle the dark" thing either. Many of us grew up with Bambi, Pinocchio, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, and Mulan, all of which have darker content at least in part. We weren't traumatized by it too much.

It probably has more to do with merchandising. A Lorax movie isn't too great for that (and produces oceans' worth of unintentional irony), but it's still a big factor for the people making these movies. They're always looking for another Cars.

Everyone seems to forget that Wall*E was bleak as all fuck. It just didn't dwell on the whole end of the world thing and focused on the possibility to rebuild. It was a total critical success and did well at the box office. It was fun and kid friendly but also utterly depressing and hopeless in places. Silent running for kids basically. It was an out and out enviromental movie about hope and cool robots. So this shit can work and the masses will watch it.

The Lorax just sounds like the usual shit where the enviromental message is there to get parents to drag their crotch spawn to it and feel like they are raising them properly

RJ Dalton:
Call me crazy, but I was expecting a cock-up of precisely these tremendous proportions when I saw the words "From the creators of Despicable Me" on the poster.

It's funny. When I watched the Despicable me movie a couple weeks ago I felt the same about them touting it on their poster. That movie wasn't really very good. In fact it felt like the hour long pilot to an okay cartoon show. It wasn't really about Mad scientist having super silly science slap fights it was about a grouch adopting children and becoming a nice guy through having them (does that ever really happen?) around. Ultimately its only note worthy part was those yellow pill creatures that bare a uncanny resemblance to those lego people tron bonne controlled.

But, you see, there must be a bad guy manipulating the otherwise decent masses! There has to be one singular evil entity making big bad decisions!

If not, it is just a bunch of ignorant everymen making a lot of small bad decisions!

That can't be, because I'm an everyman!

Evil must come from small groups or individuals with tons of power: "The 1%", "Corporations", "Washington", "Big Media", "Videogames", "Religious Fanatics". That way none of the responsibility lies with me! We can't hold everyone responsible, because I'm part of everyone!

(hehe, captcha: "lie low")

Swifteye:
it was about a grouch adopting children and becoming a nice guy through having them (does that ever really happen?) around.

Yeah. It was called Duck Tales.

krellen:

Swifteye:
it was about a grouch adopting children and becoming a nice guy through having them (does that ever really happen?) around.

Yeah. It was called Duck Tales.

No I mean in real life. I know it's happens in cartoons like. A lot. But in real life. Has that ever really happened.

Did anyone expect any different. I mean business is business, and business must grow, regardless of crummies in tummies you know.

MovieBob:
Unless
pretty neighbor Audrey (Talyor Swift), a classical Manic Pixie Dream Girl

Really Bob? The movie doesn't suck enough that you have to resort to that pretentious old chesnut? The Artist was understandable but c'mon now.

Swifteye:

It's funny. When I watched the Despicable me movie a couple weeks ago I felt the same about them touting it on their poster. That movie wasn't really very good. In fact it felt like the hour long pilot to an okay cartoon show. It wasn't really about Mad scientist having super silly science slap fights it was about a grouch adopting children and becoming a nice guy through having them (does that ever really happen?) around. Ultimately its only note worthy part was those yellow pill creatures that bare a uncanny resemblance to those lego people tron bonne controlled.

I thought of them as suppository monsters.

But honestly, that really is Despicable Me's biggest problem: the kids. If it had just been a comedic punch up between an old-school mad scientist and a "hip," smartass younger villain, it would have been excellent. Instead, we got this cliche ridden piece of tripe about a man who learns how much he really cares because some kids did the puppy-dog eye trick on him. They weren't interesting, the plot was not engaging on any level and in the end the only emotion I felt for them was the wish that every one of them would die for ruining what could have been an interesting movie.

RJ Dalton:

Swifteye:

It's funny. When I watched the Despicable me movie a couple weeks ago I felt the same about them touting it on their poster. That movie wasn't really very good. In fact it felt like the hour long pilot to an okay cartoon show. It wasn't really about Mad scientist having super silly science slap fights it was about a grouch adopting children and becoming a nice guy through having them (does that ever really happen?) around. Ultimately its only note worthy part was those yellow pill creatures that bare a uncanny resemblance to those lego people tron bonne controlled.

I thought of them as suppository monsters.

But honestly, that really is Despicable Me's biggest problem: the kids. If it had just been a comedic punch up between an old-school mad scientist and a "hip," smartass younger villain, it would have been excellent. Instead, we got this cliche ridden piece of tripe about a man who learns how much he really cares because some kids did the puppy-dog eye trick on him. They weren't interesting, the plot was not engaging on any level and in the end the only emotion I felt for them was the wish that every one of them would die for ruining what could have been an interesting movie.

This is pretty much exactly what I felt about Despicable Me. I started watching it with no context, thinking 'Hey, this looks kind of entertaining.' Then I saw the kids for the first time.

'Man, these characters are frakking irritating. I hope they don't play a big....'

'Oh gods'

'They're the focus of the whole godsdamned movie, aren't they'

'FUUUUUUUUUUUUU-

You get the idea

I just watched both The Lorax and The Butter Battle Book. I'm not sure if i'd want to read that to my kids if i ever have any but they both make very good points. Dr. Seuss never fails to amaze!

Veloxe:

Furioso:
The Land Before Time was pretty depressing

Oh thanks, now I remember the death of Little Foot's Mom...

I up your Little Foot with Mr. Hooper.

I actually think that the choice to make a continuation or sequel or sorts to the Lorax was actually a good one, compared to just doing a straight remake. The Lorax is probably one of Dr. Seuss' best known books to date, and was already made into an animated tv special in 1972. The TV special itself is actually fairly interesting, in that it expands upon the systemic problems and consequences with the business model that the Wuncler is using, even taking a quick look at the problem of the labor market itself.

The movie itself kept me entertained, thought I will readily admit that the protagonist's motivation is a bit trite. However, I liked that it didn't try to be like the original. For a little kid just starting to think about the world around them, this movie might be a welcome first start. I'm not saying Bob is wrong to criticize the softening up of the actual villain of the story, changing it from a shared culpability to a "few bad apples", but I don't think it ruins the inherent message of conservation and naturalism as a virtue.

When Bob says that "You cannot teach an audience a lesson if you're not willing to allow for the possibility of them feeling bad about giving the wrong answer." I think he's overlooking the idea that an audience may be smart enough to take away the message without being hit over the head with agit-prop.
Then again we are talking about the man that said:

"The difference between me and most libertarians is that they start from the position that humanity, when given freedom, will use it well. I see humanity too clearly to think that is the case. Most of us are PROFOUNDLY incapable of managing ourselves. What keeps me from being a "liberal" despite this knowledge is that, while I accept this about my species... I don't really CARE. Don't misunderstand - I'm not WHOLLY self-interested. I care more about my friends, family, many other associates more than I do myself
But "humanity?" Humanity can suck an egg."

His entire perspective on humanity in general comes from a default position of distrust in it's very nature. While at our base level of instinct there are certain traits more geared toward survival than anything else, such as our tendency to hoard resources and act super paranoid around the unknown, I think that on some level man is indeed greater than beast in our ability not only to make sense of our world, but also to reinterpret it in ways that be seen as ultimately altruistic or even otherworldly. I'm not saying I have total faith in every individual I meet nor am I saying that there aren't some very messed up things happening on the Earth right now, but overall I'd say humanity is this planet's most valuable resource.

B Goy:
Am I the only one who has noticed that Bob seems determined to never talk about Despicable Me seeing as that was a large part of the marketings ads and that it may be the source for his anger against the changes made about the Once-ler and townspeople?

The pull of Despicable Me was that the protagonist was a bad guy but he had his reasons and was someone who really could not be blamed for the more cruel things he did after Act 2 and 3. Seeing that, and this new thing being the popular thing at the moment, the company decided it could work again and it did, being a huge success in the box office and the company gets another victory under the belt while the world waits for Despicable Me 2.

Yeah, but Despicable Me was still not the movie promised to me by the trailer. I was hoping for a fun spy vs spy sort of thing, with a real bad guy protagonist. But no, I got a movie about Steve Carell with bad Russian accent trying to be a good dad.

If it wasn't for "It's so FLUFFY!" and the little yellow things there would be no value to that movie.

SadakoMoose:
I actually think that the choice to make a continuation or sequel or sorts to the Lorax was actually a good one, compared to just doing a straight remake. The Lorax is probably one of Dr. Seuss' best known books to date, and was already made into an animated tv special in 1972. The TV special itself is actually fairly interesting, in that it expands upon the systemic problems and consequences with the business model that the Wuncler is using, even taking a quick look at the problem of the labor market itself.

The movie itself kept me entertained, thought I will readily admit that the protagonist's motivation is a bit trite. However, I liked that it didn't try to be like the original. For a little kid just starting to think about the world around them, this movie might be a welcome first start. I'm not saying Bob is wrong to criticize the softening up of the actual villain of the story, changing it from a shared culpability to a "few bad apples", but I don't think it ruins the inherent message of conservation and naturalism as a virtue.

When Bob says that "You cannot teach an audience a lesson if you're not willing to allow for the possibility of them feeling bad about giving the wrong answer." I think he's overlooking the idea that an audience may be smart enough to take away the message without being hit over the head with agit-prop.

This is a good point (that the movie can be seen as a sequel to the book, rather than a straight-up remake of it), and it's certainly true that some, having read The Lorax already or having been introduced to it in some fashion already, can pick up the subtle messages just file.

I'm still not a fan of the approach or the movie, personally, but...fair point.

Then again we are talking about the man that said:

"The difference between me and most libertarians is that they start from the position that humanity, when given freedom, will use it well. I see humanity too clearly to think that is the case. Most of us are PROFOUNDLY incapable of managing ourselves. What keeps me from being a "liberal" despite this knowledge is that, while I accept this about my species... I don't really CARE. Don't misunderstand - I'm not WHOLLY self-interested. I care more about my friends, family, many other associates more than I do myself
But "humanity?" Humanity can suck an egg."

His entire perspective on humanity in general comes from a default position of distrust in it's very nature. While at our base level of instinct there are certain traits more geared toward survival than anything else, such as our tendency to hoard resources and act super paranoid around the unknown, I think that on some level man is indeed greater than beast in our ability not only to make sense of our world, but also to reinterpret it in ways that be seen as ultimately altruistic or even otherworldly. I'm not saying I have total faith in every individual I meet nor am I saying that there aren't some very messed up things happening on the Earth right now, but overall I'd say humanity is this planet's most valuable resource.

Desire to form relationships and complex communities are also ingrained in our DNA (that was arguably the only reason humanity could survive for so long). And it's pretty hard to do either if everyone's wired to act like a prick to most other people. So yeah, there is something off about that kind of logic (I'm not going to say I trust everyone enoughto get rid of all laws ever, but it seems odd (not to mention contradictory) to state that laws are what keep irresponsible people in check.

Saying that "humanity is this planet's most valuable resource" is highly debatable, though.

newguy77:

MB202:
Butter Battle

People on one side of a wall like their toast butter side up, while the other side likes butter side down (fucking weirdos). Both sides don't want the other side corrupting their side, so one side starts off by sending a guard with nothing. Other side sends a guard with a rock to throw. First side retaliates with a guy with a slingshot, and so on until they both have very "destructive" weaponry aimed at each other all for differences in ideology. The End. Obviously a story about how the Cold War was stupid.

I have to track down and read that story again...

I liked the Lorax, albeit they could've used more Lorax in my opinion. I don't buy that the movie was any less biting in its indictment of society's interaction with nature. In fact, I'd argue that, mandatory cinematic plot points aside, the movie offers an even bolder truth with the idea that people can do terrible things without understanding it. I don't get why Bob is so insistent that the society of Thneedville in this movie be portrayed as bad instead of just being led astray. The book doesn't talk about the town the boy is from at all so I'm not sure why it's so necessary that the place he's from is filled with really bad people. And as for the main character's motivation, it does seem kind of hokey on the surface, but honestly, what else would motivate a teenage boy? Hell the best line in the movie is the Once-ler commenting,

"If a guy does something stupid once, hey, it's cause he's a guy. But if a guy does something stupid twice, it's for a girl."

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