A small note (which if you read my Bourne Legacy review, I’m sure this will surprise you.), I’d never seen Monsters, Inc. before. I know, it’s ridiculous; the movie came out over 10 years ago. It’s been on TV numerous times. How did I manage to avoid it?
The answer is a conglomeration of things. Number one, I was at that age where my mother no longer had to take me to the movies + animated movies were for “kids” (everyone goes through the stage, it just meant we waited for the home video release, and often in my case for my band director to have a personal day.) Number two, my family was getting ready to move/moving to another state around the time of DVD/VHS (they still existed!) release, so we were trying not to add too much more to the pile [we severely weeded our VHS collection (because we had maybe two DVDs) which consisted mostly of home recorded stuff that was tossed, but we still got rid of a few things.] Number three, by the time Monsters, Inc. showed up on TV, I’d lost interest. Number four, in the following decade, I had far more important films to see first like Finding Nemo, Toy Story 3, WALL-E, Up, Tangled, numerous Ghibli films, and all those pesky live action films that caught my attention. In summary, I finally watched Monsters, Inc. because Monsters University came out this summer, and I am anal enough to want to consume media in the order it was produced. Why yes, I am one of those advocates for the publication order of Narnia. A belief that was strengthened when I found out that the “fourth” book of Patricia C. Wrede’s Enchanted Forest Chronicles was actually written first. I might’ve enjoyed it more had I read it before the other three.
(So this was going to go up yesterday, because I was going to watch the film and then write a review while it was fresh in my mind. Sadly, allergies made me miserable yesterday, and I didn’t feel up to it.)
When I first heard there was going to be another Bourne film, I let out an unenthusiastic “whoopdeedoo.” Now, I hadn’t seen any of the movies (yet) and truthfully had no intention to, but then I found out Jeremy Renner was starring in it. Jeremy Renner, who I had begun to love (as an actor) since his cameo in Thor (which is when I really started getting excited for The Avengers)(also, still haven’t seen any of his Oscar nominated stuff.) I had just watched Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol, and Renner is one of the reasons I like that film (the other being Simon Pegg, of course.) This is not to disparage the other actors or the franchise, just a personal taste thing. Straight up action films are boring to me. I don’t enjoy 30 minute car chases/fight scenes, something The Avengers avoided with typically snappy Whedon dialogue and constantly changing the scene (because let’s be honest, The Avengers is like 25 minutes of story and the rest is action.) I can think of only one extended car chase scene I enjoyed, and that’s the one at the end of the original Gone in 60 Seconds. But this is besides the point that because of Jeremy Renner, I was going to watch all of the Mission Impossible and Bourne films. Now I did the Mission Impossible backwards, watching the new film and then one, two, and three. With Bourne, I had intended to watch the first trilogy and then see The Bourne Legacy in theaters. I managed to watch the trilogy last summer. Unfortunately due to other must see movies of the summer, I couldn’t justify the ticket, or really find the time.
I had initially planned to see Brave in theaters. Pixar film, first female lead, set in the Scottish Highlands (highlander romances were my first guilty pleasure) … it sounded like the perfect combination to me. Then the reviews came in with mixed opinions, and of course I just had to see the Avengers a second time (completely worth it,) so Brave was pushed to see it on DVD.
And the verdict is I enjoyed it. It wasn’t perfect, and I have Wreck-It Ralph in my pile of DVDs to watch before I can say anything about whether Brave won the Oscar by virtue of being the Pixar film, but I wasn’t disappointed. From here on out, there be SPOILERS.