Is there a movie that Disney and Pixar isn’t giving the 3D treatment to? They must have found a way to do this quick and cheap because are churning out 3D re-releases like clockwork. Usually, this is the point where I would rail against this double dip. But for Pixar and animated movies the 3D coat of fresh paint actually works because a lot of these movies – especially Pixar films were made using 3D modeling and animation anyway.
One could argue they were “meant” to be 3D from the start. It goes without saying that the 3D here is amazing and really shows the power of 3D. This transfer is flawless and for a movie that originally came out in 2001 the groundbreaking animation is just as stunning today as it was then.
Monsters, Inc. was a film I didn’t like when it originally came out because of the Animation. I’m sorry, but I’m kind of a snob when it comes to animation and not a fan of computer stuff. I always complain that Pixar Animation is too sterile and technically flawless, but somehow that didn’t bother me this time. The real issue with this movie is Billy Crystal.
It is hard to buy into a character like Mike Wazowski when all you picture is Crystal. He doesn’t bother to do anything with his voice and Crystal’s jokes just weren’t that funny or cute. Now that I’m older, his voice was still overbearing but about 40 minutes into the film I finally got used to it. It was still distracting, but the story is what really sells this. The genius of Pixar is that they take every day life and turn it into something that everyone can relate to. This time they take the common childhood fear of monsters in the closet and flips it by having monsters scared of children.
But it is more than that, at its heart it is a movie about relationships and the bond between Mike and Sulley (John Goodman) and Mike. Unlike Crystal, Goodman tries to act a bit in this movie, but this was one of Pixar’s very first movie so the animation was more of a star than anything Directors Pete Docter, David Silverman and Lee Unkrich did with the voice acting. The character expressions, especially Sulley’s really suck you in.
Usually when you have a film with more than two writers on it, it ends up being a mess. This one had a committee of nine (all of whom went on to direct other Pixar projects). And the story is the highlight, but you can tell that a lot of the dialogue was probably adlibbed.
A lot of the jokes are really lame and tired, but darnit Boo (Mary Gibbs) is so darn cute it is hard to stay grumpy pants about this movie and the 3rd act really brings it all together.
The ultimate edition combo pack includes a lot of extras.
The set is spread over 5 discs – 3D Blu-ray, Regular Blu-ray, Blu-ray Bonus Disc (where all the bonuses are in Standard Def), DVD and Digital Copy. Dealing with all of these discs for such a limited feature set was really annoying. A full 2nd Blu-ray just for some lame standard def bonuses, really? I’m sure Disney would say this is a 50 Gig Transfer and they maxed it out for the movie. While the picture and audio are so beautiful and flawless, I would almost buy this argument, but other studios have somehow managed to release full-featured Blu-rays without killing the environment.
There are three shorts – Toy Story Toons: Partysaurus Rex, For The Birds, and Mike’s New Car. There’s also a filmmaker’s roundtable (are black people – other than the stars, not allowed to work at Pixar?). Of course the set is spread on
The featurettes are all broken up into short 2 minute segments and are a direct standard def transfer from the 0riginal DVD release. Most of them are very dated and look awful on Blu-ray. Some are fuzzy, clipped and contain jaggies all over the place. Navigating through them all is a “chore.” It would have been nice if they re-edited all of these into a high-def 45-minute documentary.
I always thought Monsters, Inc. was one of the weaker Pixar movies but after watching this Blu-ray I have been converted. I still have no interest in Monsters University (I would rather see a sequel), but who knows maybe it’ll be good! If you don’t own it already, then this is well worth a purchase. As amazing as the audio and video quality is, the cumbersome packaging and weak extras feels like Disney Pixar phoned it in for this release.
- Movie – B
- Audio/Video – A
- 3D Quality – A
- Extras – D
Final Overall Grade – B