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Comments (30) Cars 2, News

Cars 2: “Frankly, it’s too good for that.”

Just a brief note here of an article everyone should read by Michael Cavna, on Comic Riffs over at the Washington Post.

Cavna ponders whether Pixar’s latest blockbuster Cars 2, has performed so poorly critically due to "overheated expectations". I’m currently in a country where Cars 2 hasn’t been released, so I am unable to comment precisely on how accurate Cavna is, however, the article does sum up my sentiments on how this could have happened.

I don’t want to steal the punchline from the article, but please do read it, Pixar Pile-Up: Is ‘Cars 2’ crashing into overheated expectations?

Cars 2 is still yet to open in the Netherlands, Spain, UK, France, Germany, Japan and a host of more, all dates available here.

30 Responses to Cars 2: “Frankly, it’s too good for that.”

  1. Anonymous says:

    Well, there’ll always be people who refuse to believe Pixar can make bad movies. Fact is that with the bad reviews of Cars 2 and its pathetic domestic box office performance, no one can say that Pixar’s winning streak isn’t broken. Pixar should simply refrain from making blatant cash grabs (which Cars 2 clearly is). But with the upcoming Monsters University (which probably only exists to revive the Monsters franchise) and Toy Story 4 (I know it’s not official yet but Tom Hanks is a pretty reliable source) it seems like the influence of money-hungry Disney suits is becoming very clear now.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Was it just bad timing having their worst movie have its sequel after Toy Story 3 and making higher expectations that Cars 2 didn’t reach, or was it Cars 2 was actually just bad? And the whole thing to make sequels not to continue a story but just to make money, isn’t that Disney’s fault and not Pixar?

  3. Anonymous says:

    I really do think that the expectations are higher because it has the Pixar brand name, but frankly the expectations should be higher. That’s not to say that Pixar can’t just have fun, but ALL of their movies are fun. I can’t think of one that they didn’t have fun with (WALL-E and Up might be the most “drama” oriented, but they’re still a hoot)

    I think the point is that we expect to have fun AND be fed intellectually by Pixar. The “Cars” movies just don’t do that the way the others do. I sincerely think that had “Cars 2” been released by another studio, it would have received much better reviews. It is not a bad movie, it’s fun and entertaining. It just doesn’t strive to be anything more than that.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Sorry, but if Pixar made Cars 25 starring Mater the Tow Truck and his sidekick Pail of Oil this site would still rave and question why critics and audiences are giving it a bad grade. You have proven to be completely biased and unrealistic.

    I haven’t seen Cars 2 but I can grasp it from both critical and audience reception as well as Mater’s Tall Tales and the assortment of posters, trailers and promotional material and the apologists are in overdrive on this one. Do we need heart to be on every film? The honest answer is, YES, we do.

    Cars, Monsters Inc., Finding Nemo- all of these films were fun yet had heart too. They are not mutually exclusive. Sure, I’m not saying I don’t or can’t enjoy movies like Transformers where it runs on pure adrenaline and fun, but those are qualities Cars 2 does not seem to possess.

    Cars 2 is basically Pink Panther 2, except animated and starring Larry the Cable Guy instead of Steve Martin. The storyline is one of the worst general ones in all of Hollywood and in TV.

    I don’t know why anyone would argue that Mater deserved to be upgraded to main character or that, as I have read, the “be yourself, nevermind if you’re an idiot, everyone will change for you,” running theme works or can even be taken seriously. Not to mention the sidelining of the Radiator Springs characters. From what I’ve seen and know Sally and everyone else hardly gets screentime or worthwhile appearances and there is no “Bo Peep is a lamp” excuse this time.

    Simply put, this completely disregards the message of the first film and its complete 180 in style/genre doesn’t help. The fact that no one asked for and the story didn’t lend itself to a sequel and furthermore is roundly trashed by the majority of people, shows that Pixar also betrayed their “story is key/we will only make stories we want to see/sequels that need to be told” motto.

    Without Stanton and Bird, and with the increasing rate of firings and departures from Chapman, to Lewis, Sweetland and whomever else and those at Disney as well, Deja, Keane, Sanders etc. it doesn’t seem to paint a happy ship more a tyrannical and ordered one. Whether Lasseter has become a crony or is forced to show his hand, I don’t know, and frankly I don’t care.

    He should know his worth. Without him and without the various people that would stand with him, Pixar would be nothing, and the idiot executives like Iger and Ross would have nothing. But now with mandated Cars 2, Toy Story 4, Monsters Inc 2 etc. it just seems they have lost their way or are being conformed to the Disney creative-less, short-sighted and shallow machine.

  5. Anonymous says:

    I don’t know who writes these blogposts, but this guy needs to wake up and smell the roses. Cars 2 sucked. It made King Fu Panda look like “The King’s Speech” When I first heard the rumor that they were making a cars 2, I refused to believe it, but my nightmare has become a reality. John Lasseter has either been corrupted, or he simply isn’t as good as we thought. Where’s brad bird? where’s Andrew stanton? They’re both off making movies with othere studios. WHY!? Get their butts back over here and let them do their thing.

  6. Anonymous says:

    My expectations have never been lower for a Pixar film, and yet CARS 2 still fell far short of my expectations.

    My expectations were very low for TOY STORY 3 too… but TS3 blew me away! It was a fantastic story that proved my low expectations wrong.

    That’s the difference between a skillfully crafted story and an over-hyped retread.

    I love Pixar. I’ve flown up to the studio for a couple advanced screening charity events, and you rarely see me without my beloved PIXAR hat. But I’m not blind: CARS 2 was their first piece of junk. Very sad.

  7. Anonymous says:

    You’d think the comments would be more positive.

    This blogger hit the nail of the head here. The reviews aren’t even THAT bad, mainly just average.

  8. martini833 says:

    Just a note for those people taking a jab at Upcoming Pixar based on the contents of a Washington Post article. First of all, I did enjoy Cars 2 for what it was. I agree with many of the points, but still, saying it was completely terrible is up to you— doesn’t mean everyone must subscribe to your opinion. Also, this post serves as a suggestion from another one of our writers, Thomas, who is out travelling and has not seen the film yet. Nowhere was he acting apologetic. We do appreciate your thoughts but not any rudeness. Thank you. —Martin

  9. Anonymous says:

    So is anyone worried about how Brave will turn out?

  10. Anonymous says:

    Yes. Firing Brenda Chapman was a bad idea. After Cars 2, it’s no wonder they got rid of brad lewis for nearly ruining the franchise. But they also got rid of Gary Rydstrom, David Silverman, Doug Sweetland, Jan Pinkava, and Ash Brannon over time. One does wonder why this is going on.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Sadly, the biggest problems with Cars 2 are all story problems, which is something I never thought I’d see in a Pixar film.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Gary Rydstrom left Pixar?

  13. Anonymous says:

    I didn’t read all these comments,but I glanced at something about a toy story 4.Was someone joking,tell me someone was joking,If that is the case Disney has too much control as to what Pixar films get a greenlight.

  14. Anonymous says:

    The Toy Story 4 rumor was introduced by Tom Hanks, who implied that Pixar is working on a new Toy Story. Since Disney didn’t want to refute this rumor it looks like Toy Story 4 is indeed in the pipeline. It’s the same as with Cars 2 and Monsters 2: a rumor is floating around, Disney doesn’t want to comment and a few months later they’re officially announced.

  15. Anonymous says:

    If Toy Story 4 is indeed being made then Pixar can go to hell.

  16. Anonymous says:

    I know some people may view these comments as “rude” but at this point I think we must face them to be true. It seems like we are finally beginning to see a slight crack in the hull of the Pixar ship. It isn’t sinking just yet, but they need to move quickly to repair the crack or it will begin to take on water and sink.

  17. Anonymous says:

    I saw Cars 2 TWICE (once in Imax and once in 3D) and the only problem I have with it was that it was rated G. I seem like the only one who liked the movie.

    If everyone else hates this movie, they should probably watch “The Incredibles” again because that movie was much worse that this one.

    My expectations for Brave next year aren’t as high as Toy Story 3 but I’m still looking foward to it.

  18. Anonymous says:

    I saw the interveiw with Tom hanks talking about Ts4,the interveiwer and Tom seemed like he was joking not serious at all

  19. Anonymous says:

    Don’t forget Finding Nemo 2.

  20. Anonymous says:

    Gary Rydstrom didn’t leave. Newt was cancelled, but he’s still around (he just directed Toy Story’s Hawaiian Vacation). And the others who left, I don’t think they were all “pushed out.” Maybe a few, but I’m sure some of them have different reasons for leaving Pixar,

    Anyway, I do agree with the article in part, and critics have been harsher on Cars 2 than they need to be. Cars 2 does still feel like a cash grab to me, but in spite of that it is still a fun movie. Pixar should be allowed “fluff” movies every once in a while. That said, there is still something off about the movie. The fact that they attempted to put some “heart” back into the movie in the third act shows how shallow the rest of the movie really is. The plot moves forward nonstop, and every break the film took for these so-called heartfelt moments is jarring and takes me out of the movie, and the scenes themselves are awkwardly handled. This by itself does not make Cars 2 a bad film by any means, but it is the first time every that I can recall where Pixar ATTEMPTED something and failed. Plus, this is a story problem. For the studio famed for its motto “Story is King” to tell a story poorly speaks more for the future of the company than for this one film itself. And I more than anything want Pixar to return to original films. Toy Story 3 was great, but sequels are not what the studio needs right now. Monsters University could be decent, but could be crap, and even if a Toy Story 4 comes out and it is the greatest movie every created, it will no matter what take away from the perfect ending that 3 gave the franchise. Cars 2 is not a bad movie, but it should be a warning to the studio of where they could be headed. Pixar, I think, needs another shake up like the one Brad Bird gave them with Incredibles. They are starting to get a little too comfortable with themselves.

  21. Anonymous says:

    Gary Rydstrom just finished a years worth of sound work on Steven Speilberg’s next 2 films, which means the toy story short was probably finished long ago and saved for the release of Cars 2. Rydstrom is also listed on doing the sound for 3 more upcoming films for other studios at his old job. He’s left Pixar.

  22. Anonymous says:

    Rydstrom also did sound work on Super 8, another Speilberg project. BTW, all 3 of the Speilberg Projects were Dreamworks projects.

  23. Anonymous says:

    When I was told I was going to go see Cars 2, I KNEW that it would be nowhere near as emotional and indepth as TS3, frankly because they are TALKING CARS.

    Overall, I loved the movie, and believe there are no problems with just a nice action movie with the lesson of friendship. Pixar does not have to be movies that you always need a tissue for, because that can become overbearing. Having one sort of action movie in the mix of all its other movies isn’t crime. It worked for me!

    People might feel better if TS3 was released after Cars 2, because then there expectations would have been leveled off, but for me, I don’t care. I am speaking for a family of 5, and feel that Cars 2 was still a darn-good film, full of comedy, emotion (friendship can be a problem, you know! :p), and beautiful, absolutey stunning animation.

    Moral is every Pixar movie doesn’t have to be Academy-Award worthy, it just has to be enjoyable for the target audience, i.e. the kids, which I believe, it definetly was.

  24. Anonymous says:

    Well said! I agree totally! I saw Cars 2 twice and it is my favorite movie. It may not be everyone elses favorite movie but it doesn’t have to be their worst. Pixar spent a lot of time on these films. It may be different from Toy Story 3 or Up but that doesn’t mean it’s bad. You guys are too busy criticizing the movie but why not enjoy it. Because all these bad comments make me think — Why are you guys Pixar fans?

  25. Anonymous says:

    We are Pixar fans because we like movies with a strong and heartfelt story with interesting characters. That’s been Pixar’s trademark since the first Toy Story and that’s what’s made Pixar so special. Cars 2 does not have these trademark features and that’s where all the hate comes from. Cars 2 is not a real Pixar movie.

  26. Anonymous says:

    “Hate” is such a strong word. After all, it’s ONLY a cartoon.

  27. Anonymous says:

    Pixar movies are more than just ‘cartoons’. Cars 2, now that’s just a cartoon.
    Hate may be a strong word, but I know a lot of people are very passionate about Pixar.

  28. Anonymous says:

    No. They’re Cartoons. And THANK GOD for that. The world has made Pixar’s Cartoons VERY successful. Why? Because they like cartoons.

  29. Anonymous says:

    Obviously, the Anonymous right above me is not a Pixar fan.

  30. Anonymous says:

    No, I’m a BIG Pixar Fan. And I love cartoons. Which is what Pixar makes (thank God!).

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