AS A lightly published science fiction writer and longtime devotee of sci-fi films, I appreciated this article very much. My wife and I saw "Wall-E" the weekend before and were very disappointed, and Reed Johnson articulated better than we had what the flaws were.
He put his finger on the fact that it's in essence two movies, before and after Wall-E gets to the spaceship. It reminds me of "Titanic," which is two movies before and after hitting the iceberg; the first is a character-driven historical, the second action-adventure melodrama.
We tend to like animated films and the animation was gorgeous . . . but the story? Ptui. It's warm-and-fuzzy cotton candy, lacking in substance or engagement with tough realities or tough questions.
THE PR and reviews of "Wall-E" bowled me over. As a sci-fi fan and lover of recent animations, I thought "Wall-E" was going to be a treat; I left the theater with a somewhat hollow feeling. Reed Johnson got it.
The second half was Fred Flintstone clones and a great cartoon; with some real drama of the type he discussed, "Wall-E" could have been so much more. I also thought the movie was somewhat hamstrung by the protagonist and his girlfriend being limited essentially to nonverbal communication.