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Reviews
STAR RATINGS EXPLAINED
Unmissable 5 Stars
Excellent 4 Stars
Good 3 Stars
Poor 2 Stars
Tragic 1 Star

FILM DETAILS
Certificate
U
Cast
John Goodman
Billy Crystal
Steve Buscemi
James Coburn
Mary Gibbs.
Directors
Peter Docter
David Silverman
Lee Unkrich.
Screenwriters
Dan Gerson
Andrew Stanton.
Running Time
92 minutes

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Monsters, Inc.


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Plot
Sulley and Mike are the number one ‘scare team’ at Monsters, Inc. — they jump out of closets to frighten kids and collect the scare energy which powers Monstropolis. However, when a (highly toxic) little girl gets trapped on the wrong side of the closet door, things go very wrong.


Review
If traditional animation has enjoyed a tricky 12 months, then 3-D computer animation — Final Fantasy apart — is on a roll. And if the inaugural Best Animated Feature Oscar doesn’t go to a digitised freak, then something will be seriously amiss. But don’t be surprised if Pixar’s big, blue monster steals the award from DreamWorks’ grumpy, green ogre.


In some ways Monsters, Inc. — co-directed by Pete Docter, David Silverman and Lee Unkrich, with Pixar guru John Lasseter serving as executive producer — is everything we’ve come to expect from the Disney/Pixar axis.


It has a delicious premise, sumptuous animation and a mouth-watering voice cast. And yet this is a very different beast from Lasseter’s Toy Story movies. Where Toy Story was knowing and occasionally arch, this is wide-eyed and innocent. (It is telling that the human child featured here is an impossibly cute two year-old, compared to the Toy Story kids who were just starting to put away childish things.)


The familiar Pixar themes of childhood worlds of imagination are revisited but, unlike Toy Story, this is not an examination of the various threats posed to ephemeral pleasures. Instead, it is a joyful celebration of the power (literally, the power, as screams are the raw fuel of Monstropolis) of make-believe.


Sulley and Mike — brilliantly improvised by John Goodman and Billy Crystal — are bickering buddies in the Eric and Ernie mould. Funny, loveable and, above all, inseparable. This makes them a team in a way that Woody and Buzz were not. Woody and Buzz represented polar points of view and generated a genuine thematic tension which adults could grasp. Mike and Sulley are a more straightforward double-act. And, despite the monster menagerie on show, Mike and Sulley lack the fully-realised supporting characters — the something-for-everyone approach — that so ably assisted Woody and Buzz.


On the plus side, technical leaps have definitely been made since Toy Story, and Sulley in particular is the most vivid and textured CGI character yet created.


Similarly, the climactic scramble through a labyrinth of closet doors — each one containing another world — is a breathless action-comedy set-piece that’s several leagues ahead of the airport chase in Toy Story 2. And although Monsters, Inc. deserves to be seen on the big screen, arguably the definitive viewing experience will have to wait until DVD; only then will you begin to process the volume of fabulous sight gags tucked away in every corner of the beautifully detailed backgrounds. In other words, a treat for the eyeball.


Verdict
Brighter and more exuberant than Shrek, this would be a worthy winner of the first animation Oscar. However, minus John Lasseter’s distinctive sensibility, Monsters, Inc. skews slightly younger than the Toy Story movies. Adults may find the script two or three jokes short of classic status.


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Average user rating for Monsters, Inc.
Empire Star Rating

Monsters, Inc. Review

Even though Monsters, Inc lacks the sophistication of the Toy Story series, it is a still delight for children of all ages. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by the film man at 23:56, 13 December 2011 | Report This Post


This is my favourite pixar movie so far.

I know toy story is great and all but this is way better. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by typewriter at 21:17, 19 July 2010 | Report This Post


Still one of my favorite Pixars. An original film and great characters who are perfectly voice-casted. Billy Crystal and John Goodman are superb. The so typical Pixar combination from a great script and excellent characters are present here again. The film on blu-ray looks better than it has ever done, maybe this is the best picture quality that I have seen so far on this format. Film and blu-ray release alike really should be a part of any collection. 8,5/10 ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by TheGodfather at 23:19, 08 December 2009 | Report This Post


Brilliant... The best animated film out

Fun for everyone in the family- very very funny ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by blaud at 15:07, 19 May 2008 | Report This Post


Brilliant... The best animated film out

Fun for everyone in the family- very very funny ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by blaud at 15:07, 19 May 2008 | Report This Post


disappointing

I haven't seen cars yet, but i've seen all the other pixar films at the cinemas from toy story (the first movie i saw at the cinema when i was 4) to the incredibles when i was 13. And i was very disappointed with film when i saw it, the plot was bland and uninspired and it just wasn't all that funny. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by kerz at 13:41, 19 October 2007 | Report This Post


bravo

A very, moving, funny film from pixar once again. Impressive how they do sullys fur, beautiful... ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by alexisreaver2132 at 13:58, 17 May 2006 | Report This Post


ACE!

This film was brill! Boo is the most cute cartoon character that I have ever seen! However, Toy Story still has to be the best! ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Empo at 09:25, 12 May 2006 | Report This Post


RE: Monsters, Inc.

Definately one of Pixar's best creations. Mike and Sully are fantastic characters, with an equally awesome supporting cast. Boo is the sweetest little thing ever, especially when she eventually overcomes her fear of Randall. Bless.p; I also have to agree that this is better than Toy Story. ... More

Posted by AgentGoth at 13:22, 20 March 2006 | Report This Post


RE: Monsters, Inc.

Obviously, since you sent it twice. Lol. No, I enjoyed it much more than Toy Story, which I thought was overrated to begin with - - but that's for another thread! Monsters Inc. was extremely funny and the kid in it was so adorable! Good plot, storyline, casting (of voices, of course), and generally all-round fun for the family. I don't know a kid that didn't like it ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Jessica_ca_ca_ca at 11:23, 20 March 2006 | Report This Post


RE: Monsters, Inc.

great movie...i liked this way more than Toy Story. ... More

Posted by jor el180 at 14:23, 19 March 2006 | Report This Post


RE: Monsters, Inc.

I liked this way more than Toy Story. Its actually funny and the story's interesting and sad at the same time. ... More

Posted by jor el180 at 14:21, 19 March 2006 | Report This Post


RE: Monsters, Inc.

Pixar's most underrated: if anything it's more imaginative than Toy Story. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by doctorolorinbats1975 at 14:18, 19 March 2006 | Report This Post


Monsters Inc

Great movie once again from pixar. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by premierbaron at 21:42, 18 March 2006 | Report This Post


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