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WALL·E Turns 10 Today! – 10 Reasons Why WALL·E Is One Of The Best Pixar Movies

Anniversary, Opinion Piece, WALL-E

Posted by Joanna • June 27, 2018

June 27th 2008 – the day WALL·E was released widely in theatres across North America. Exactly 10 years later, we’re celebrating WALL·E’s 10th anniversary with 10 reasons why we think WALL·E still deserves the title of ‘One Of The Best Pixar Movies’ (we feel that the conclusive ‘Best Pixar Movie’ title doesn’t, and shouldn’t, exist!). Read on to discover why co-writers Nia and Joanna believe WALL·E will always deserve a place in the Pixar Hall of Fame.

Nia

Nia

1. Lack of Dialogue

One of the most iconic aspects about WALL·E is the fact that more than half of the film is done without dialogue. The film just wouldn’t be the same if the loveable robot could speak or if WALL·E and EVE had a romantic conversation as they watched the sun set. Animation means so much to me because there are literally no rules as to how someone could tell a story – you can have toys coming to life, bugs rebelling against grasshoppers, etc., but each of those unique stories could be told in so many different ways. In WALL·E  we follow a robot on this massive adventure as he leaves the  garbage-ridden planet he calls home, flies through space and eventually makes it on-board a fancy spaceship, but we see it all without dialogue and we barely even notice. There is so much that can be said with a simple glance, a gesture, or even a brief cut that 12 pages of dialogue can never achieve. WALL·E is a testament to that – even though the film is now ten years old, it’s still ambitious and there hasn’t been a film yet to challenge its lack of dialogue.

2. The Love Story

Stand aside, Rapunzel and Finn, you too Cinderella and Prince Charming, because WALL·E and EVE might be the most iconic couple in animation history. There’s nothing better than an unconventional love story, especially one that doesn’t even revolve around humans. When I first went into the cinema to watch WALL·E, I had no idea that the core of the film would revolve around WALL·E and his heart of gold as he tries to win the affections of EVE. Not only does he share all the things he loves with EVE when she visits earth, but he follows her all over space, and even risks his life to save her at the end. WALL·E, a true gentleman robot, even protects EVE and watches after her once she shuts down while on earth. Opposites attract in the most beautiful ways with their relationship. Hey, I know it’s been 10 years but I’m still waiting for a scene of them flying off into the sunset holding hands and singing along to Hello, Dolly!

WALL·E concept art by Ralph Eggleston

3. Classic Film References

Speaking of Hello, Dolly! One of the reasons this film is so special is because of all the beautiful references to this iconic musical. Lets talk about that opening sequence and the use of Put on Your Sunday Clothes:

“Out there
There’s a world outside of Yonkers
Way out there beyond this hick town, Barnaby
There’s a slick town, Barnaby
Out there
Full of shine and full of sparkle
Close your eyes and see it glisten, Barnaby
Listen, Barnaby”

The lyrics are dripping with nostalgia and fit WALL·E’s story almost perfectly – the urge to make earth the way it once was, before it was overflowing with garbage and waste, and to set off into space, exploring the world outside of the planet. Those lyrics also capture the whimsically and childlike wonder of WALL·E. It might seem odd there’s such a random focus on Hello, Dolly! But it makes sense in relation to the story. WALL·E only has the VHS copy of the musical to keep him company on earth. Just like his cockroach friend, Hello, Dolly! Is one of his companions and part of him; it’s what keeps him going and motivated throughout the film.

Another great reference to classic film is of course, the evil robot AUTO on the human’s spaceship. The chilling personality of the robot resembles the infamous HAL: 9000 from 2001: A Space Oddity; from the deadpan voice to the robot’s design, it’s hard to ignore that the film directly influenced the character.

4. Character Designs

One of the most charming elements about WALL·E is all the character designs – they’re simple and efficient, we don’t need to have all the detail in the world thrown into WALL·E, EVE, or even the humans to care for them, to root for them. There’s just enough detail as to not distract us from the heart of the story. The design of AUTO is also simplistic, he looks like a steering wheel for Pete’s sake, and yet we’re terrified of him and want him to be shut down completely for the sake of team WALL·E. From the dirty, clunky box shapes of WALL·E, and the sleek and oval designs of Eve, to even the round and disproportioned humans; the way each character was crafted tells us perfectly about who they are and how they interact with others in the world around them. At first all of the different character shapes look like a game of Tetris; you don’t think they’re going to be a match but then you realize how they move and flow and work together to save the day and they all fit perfectly into place, as if they were always meant to be together.

5. Director Andrew Stanton

I don’t know about you, but sometimes I like to think about how another director at Pixar would’ve handled WALL·E. If Brad Bird or Pete Docter directed the film, it just wouldn’t have been the same. Granted, it would’ve been a brilliant film but it would’ve been different. WALL·E would’ve been there, maybe the same story would’ve remained intact, but the vision would’ve been something else entirely. Each director brings a part of themselves on to their projects – if you gave me and a few other storytellers the same prompt and told us to write a 90-page screenplay, each one would be dissimilar. WALL·E works so well because it’s Andrew Stanton’s vision. You look at this film and it fits so well with the other stories on his fantastic repertoire – A Bug’s Life, Finding Nemo, and even Finding Dory; Stanton’s films are always so simplistic, ambitious, and character driven. He pushes his characters out of their comfort zones, putting them into these massive environments and seeing how they’re going to react: Flick leaving the comforts of the colony in A Bug’s Life, Marlin facing his fears and literally swimming out into the deep blue sea in Finding Nemo, and even WALL·E flying into space to follow the love of his life; there’s a common theme of exploration, both internally and externally, with Stanton’s films.

Joanna

Joanna

6. Its Strong Environmental Message

One of the reasons I adore Pixar movies is because of the striking messages that are always so perfectly communicated within them. WALL·E is a perfect example of this – WALL·E himself teaches us to be kind and loyal, and the film’s overarching environmental and commercial themes make it forever, and increasingly, relevant. Some found the environmental message to be too obvious or too ‘in your face’, but I think it was a brave move on Pixar’s part. We’re in a strange situation at the moment – species are edging towards extinction wherever you look, but for the most part the world is almost choosing to look in the other direction. I love that WALL·E wasn’t afraid to put its environmental message right at its core. Pixar wasn’t lecturing us – the lesson was interwoven into a unique, universal love story. The moment I first saw WALL·E gaze at that single green, thriving sapling with pure wonder, I knew I was watching something special.

7. The Size and Setting

Not many Pixar movies can claim that they took their audiences across the galaxy. World-building is a tricky thing – I feel like it must be even more difficult when creating an animated movie. You’re transporting people to fantastical worlds that need to feel real and believable, but not so real and believable that the magic is lost. The fact that WALL·E takes place in several incredibly distinct settings, spanning across an entire universe, while still managing to focus on its characters and its story is amazing to me. WALL·E is ambitious. The movie’s opening quite literally sets the scene by showing stunning shots in outer space – it starts off big, immediately scales down to WALL·E’s own little world, and then blasts us back off into the stars again.

8. The Music

Thomas Newman, the composer for Finding Nemo, Finding Dory, and of course WALL·E, does an astounding job at filling huge, open worlds with wonder and beauty. In a movie with very little dialogue, especially between the two main protagonists, the music needs to be expressive and descriptive – it needs to envelope the viewer in the story and help them connect and empathise with the characters. Newman’s score does exactly this. And on top of all that, how does the soundtrack somehow mingle seamlessly with 60’s Broadway music, Louis Armstrong’s cover of La Vie En Rose (1950), and catchy BnL jingles? It’s kind of genius.

9. The Sound Effects

WALL·E and EVE can’t exactly speak, so why is it so easy to understand what they’re communicating? A big part of this is the clever animation of gestures, but also the creation of futuristic yet familiar sound effects. Ben Burtt, who is famously known for creating the ‘voice’ of R2-D2 in Star Wars (along with many other iconic Star Wars sound effects), was the sound designer for WALL·E and could even be credited as the ‘voice’ of WALL·E himself. I love the sound effects in WALL·E. I love how they flesh out the oddly beautiful post-apocalyptic world that we’re introduced to. I love how they don’t exactly give the robots ‘voices’ or a language, but the whistles, tones, and clicks are more than enough to give them character and emotions. It’s so clever, and again, so ambitious.

10. Define Dancing

Yes, I am going to argue that this single scene is a reason why WALL·E is up there with the Pixar greats.

If someone were to ask me to pick a favourite Pixar scene, after much inner turmoil, I would probably say Define Dancing. The scene where WALL·E and EVE dance in space. It sounds simple and uneventful (and maybe that’s partly why I’m so in love with it), but it’s also the epitome of everything that I admire about the movie. Dialogue takes a back seat and gives way to storytelling through sensitive animation and moving, swelling music. It’s the high point of the beautifully unconventional love story. We thought this iconic scene was such a perfect example of everything that WALL·E did right that it perfectly exemplifies why it’s one of the best Pixar movies, all on its own.

 

 

Are you going to celebrate WALL·E‘s 10th anniversary by watching it this evening? We guarantee it will only make your day better!

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Pixar and Oscar

Academy Awards, Coco, in depth, Opinion Piece, Oscars

Posted by Simoa • March 3, 2018

With the 90th Academy Awards airing this Sunday, March 4th, your trio of Upcoming Pixar writers are here with some musings on the awards show.

Academy Award for Best Animated Feature

Animated movies have been cemented in our culture for the best part of a century now, so it’s hard to believe that the Academy Awards, founded in 1929, only introduced the Best Animated Feature award in 2002. In the years since, so many beautiful animated features have become nominees in this category, and while it’s great that these movies are gaining recognition, it seems strange that this recognition doesn’t stretch over into other categories as often as it should.

There are only three animated movies that have ever been nominated for Best Picture: Beauty and the Beast, Up, and Toy Story 3. (None have ever won it though). And while I may be a little biased as an avid Pixar and animation fan, I feel like there are plenty of animated movies that easily rival the most critically-famed live-action movies out there. Or at least, more than three. It feels as if the creation of the animated feature category has caused the Academy Awards board to disregard these movies when considering them for any other merits besides being ‘a good animated movie’, or ‘pretty good…for an animated movie.’ Which is weird because, to quote Brad Bird, “animation is not a genre. It is a method of storytelling.”

So right off the bat, it’s like movies that happen to use animation as their art form are already unfairly regarded as ‘beneath’ live-action movies. And then there’s the issue that many animated movies seem to be completely overlooked. Pixar have won 50% of all the Oscars ever awarded for Best Animated Feature. Disney and Pixar combined have won ~70%. This is where I begin to feel conflicted – I love Pixar. I like to see them succeed. I am always happy and proud when a Pixar movie is awarded with an Academy Award. But, especially in more recent years, when a Disney or Pixar movie is nominated for Best Animated Feature, it almost feels like a guaranteed win. And it shouldn’t be! There are so many inspirational animation studios doing amazing work at the moment. Pixar is in good company.

The Academy Award members do a good job at nominating a diverse set of movies for Best Animated Feature (even after the rule change this year where all members, not just a specialist branch, were able to nominate contenders in this category). This year’s nominees include the Mexican-culture-celebrating Coco, the first fully painted animated film Loving Vincent, and the stunningly animated The Breadwinner by the very unique and distinctive studio Cartoon Saloon. It’s when it gets to the voting for which nominee should win where things seem to get a bit problematic. It’s been reported in the past that some members don’t take this category seriously, choosing to not even bother watching all the nominated animated movies. The fact that only Disney and Pixar – huge and very well-known studios – have won Best Animated Feature for the past five years seems like a pretty good indicator that members are just voting for whatever movie they vaguely recognize. Don’t get me wrong, Zootopia, Inside Out, and Big Hero 6 are all brilliant movies that are completely deserving of their awards, but the way the winners are chosen in this category is unfair to all the animation studios involved.

-Joanna

Pixar Always Wins

As we’ve seen on every Oscar night, Pixar does always win. (With a few exceptions where they either lost or didn’t even receive a nomination). Coco will most likely take home the grand prize. However! While Pixar movies are overwhelmingly the favorites, it’s unfair to the studio’s first film with an all Latino cast, one that celebrates a culture and country far too demonized by Hollywood and politicians, to be labeled as undeserving just because of the Pixar name. And if Pixar doesn’t win? The films are stellar whether or not “Academy Award winning” precedes the title.

Oscar voters are a disappointing bunch. Like the general population, they don’t consider animation a serious art form and usually choose Pixar because they don’t bother to watch the other worthy contenders. Whatever reasons they have for dismissing animation is their own business, but it is frustrating to think that Pixar’s wins weren’t always the results of a fair competition.

Coco deserves every honor it receives. I hope that if it’s the winner Sunday night, it was because voters honestly thought it stood up better against the other nominees. If the Academy and Hollywood at large are committed to inclusivity, then the film’s win for Best Animated Feature will not only be a win for positive Mexican representation, but a win for the entire industry.

-Simoa

Academy: What’s the Point?

I used to be a massive Oscar fan when I was younger. Between the star-studded ceremonies, the tear-jerking Oscar acceptance speeches, to the inspiring films that took home the gold, I was in awe and obsessed. I would beg my parents to let me stay up late on Oscar Holy Sunday so I could find out who would win Best Actress or what film would win Best Picture. Later I’d hold Oscar parties and watch everything that was nominated so I could make accurate predictions as to what would win and why.

It wasn’t until I got older and discovered the vast number of films that are released each year and how the Academy doesn’t even recognize most of them that I realized the Oscars themselves are not only a huge popularity contest, but also a con.

Behind all the glitz and the glamour, what do the Oscars actually represent within our culture? When one of the nine films nominated for Best Picture wins the prestigious award, does it make that film any better or any more worthy than the other ones that were nominated? Do you even remember what won Best Picture last year? Or five years ago? What about the other films that were released during the year and were snubbed when the nominations came out? Are those considered bad films because they weren’t nominated? I’d like to think of the Oscars as a celebration of all the hard work that thousands of talented individuals poured into each film released, whether or not they made the Academy’s cut.

One of my favorite categories at the Oscars is Best Animated Feature and each year I constantly find myself disappointed at the Academy’s lack of knowledge of the animation industry.

I’ve been a massive Pixar fan since I first remember going to the cinemas when I was a wee lass, but the animation world goes far beyond Pixar’s pearly gates in Emeryville. Pixar definitely raises the bar when it comes to animation and sets a high standard for storytelling, but that doesn’t mean they’re the only studio making good films, or Oscar worthy films. There are so many other studios around the world making equally compelling and engaging content that often go unnoticed. Whereas the Best Picture category is often compelling as the winner can sometimes be a film completely unexpected, there is really no suspense in the Best Animated Feature category because if a Pixar film is nominated then 9 times out of 10 they’re going to win the Oscar; unless a Disney film is nominated, like Zootopia or Big Hero 6. I’m not saying those films didn’t deserve to win but it would have been more entertaining had there been a little more competition among the other animated films nominated.

It’s nice that the Academy honors animated films that were made outside of Pixar or Disney or even DreamWorks, such as The Breadwinner or Loving Vincent, but that still doesn’t make up for the other films they left out this year and in the past. If the Best Picture category can have up to 10 films nominated, then the Best Animated Feature could have the same, of course depending on what animated films are released throughout the year.

The Academy does have a high regard for Animation – they added the category to the program in 2002 and even nominated Up, Beauty and the Best, and Toy Story 3 for Best Picture, so they obviously take animation seriously and know that it’s worthy of everyone’s praise and attention… but there’s still a long way to go before animation is anywhere equal to live action.

-Nia

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Coco and the Importance of Death

Adrian Molina, Coco, in depth, Lee Unkrich, Opinion Piece

Posted by Nia • January 22, 2018

Pixar isn’t afraid to tackle death and loss in their films; it’s a prevalent theme in almost every story and even an obstacle that so many of their beloved characters need to tackle to move on and grow. Death is featured at the start of Finding Nemo, when Marlin discovers his wife and children have been brutally eaten by a barracuda. And it’s obviously there in Up, as we follow Carl and Ellie through their beautiful relationship when they meet as children, get married, and until the very end with Ellie dying due to old age. There’s even the loss of growing up and leaving your childhood behind in Toy Story 3 when Andy packs up his stuff for college and ends up leaving his beloved toys with Bonnie. Although Finding Nemo and Up have those themes featured at the beginning of the films, the entire story does not spend it’s time focusing on how that loss has affected the characters, what happens when those characters die, or how they’re supposed to deal with that empty gap in their lives. It’s simply a tool to move the characters from one spot to the other to fulfill the other story the studio wanted to tell at that time.

But with Coco, Pixar’s latest film, death takes the helm and leaves room to open up conversation about that often-taboo topic. The film would simply not exist if it weren’t for death and the Mexican holiday Day of the Dead.

Coco is an important film for not only acknowledging the Mexican culture faithfully by embracing their traditions to a tee, but by also being a place where families can come together to discuss something that is a part of everyone’s lives, no matter their age, race, or religion; and most importantly, a place where they can fondly look back and remember all the cherished memories of loved ones no longer with them.

When I was 9-years-old my grandmother passed away from Leukemia – that was the first time I had heard the word death, the first time I had seen the mourning and the blackness. I saw the tears before but I never put two and two together. Now there was a face to death, a person that I once knew who was no longer on this earth.

I understood that my grandmother was gone but not the severity of it all. One day after she passed, I had caught my mother sitting alone, watching old VHS tapes of my grandmother. She was sitting quietly in front of the TV crying. The VHS tapes were showcasing happier times of my grandmother laughing and dancing, full of health and beauty. At that age I thought nothing of it but continued to my room, where I most likely started playing with my toys or finished my homework.

There was never really a time for my parents to talk about death with me because my grandmother’s passing happened so suddenly. I was thrown into the topic and because of that, I feared the death of my friends and my family. I didn’t want anyone to die and I didn’t really understand where they went – even though in church, especially with my Greek Orthodox upbringing, I was told everlasting life existed in places like heaven.

I was lucky to have another set of grandparents who I spent my childhood with. My other grandmother didn’t pass away until 2016, and I’m still left with one surviving grandfather who is in his early nineties. Though because of my initial brush with death at 9, I feared for the day when my other grandparents would pass away. I would leave them silly letters around the house when I visited in the summer telling them that I would never forget them and I would always remember them. I didn’t want them to go anywhere, and I wanted to stay in that moment surrounded by them, forever.

I saw Coco with my family and like so many others, it brought me back to all the wonderful memories I had with all of my grandparents. Just like when Miguel’s family came together in the end to celebrate the life of their ancestors, even the ones they didn’t know in their lifetime, I came together with my own family to discuss friends and family from days gone by. After the film we talked about all the good times we had together and laughed away our tears. We most certainly remembered them and most importantly, we remembered all the great things about their lives and how they helped us become the people we are today.

It’s important for animated films like Coco to feature death so prominently in the story. Animated films are mostly targeted towards younger audiences, which makes it even more special for children to experience themes like death with their families earlier on and to figure out what it means to them in their own time. It opens up opportunities for children to ask questions about what happens when loved ones die and for parents not to shield their children from something that happens to all things in time. It’s also vital to speak to children about death and to embrace all the ugly emotions that come with it. With the fear and sadness comes the happiness and love when one is faced with the warm memories of those who have passed. It’s OK to cry, to get emotional, and to discuss this sensitive topic; luckily we have films like Coco to help open up that opportunity for all.

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Coco came into my life at just the right time

Coco, in depth, Opinion Piece, Pixar

Posted by Joanna • January 17, 2018

(Coco spoilers ahead).

Has a Pixar movie ever been released at just the right time for you?

I finally saw Coco last Saturday – I saw it on my own in a quiet cinema, quiet enough for me to be the last person in the theatre by the time the credits were coming to an end. The final scenes of Coco resonated with me so much that I didn’t stop crying until the Pixar logo appeared again to signal the end of the movie. Usually I wouldn’t class ‘crying alone in public’ as a positive experience, but this was. It was cathartic; I could feel Joy and Sadness holding hands in my head. I think I found Coco so particularly poignant and affecting because I can relate to its themes so strongly – it feels like the movie came out at just the right time for me and has helped me confront my emotions.

This isn’t the first time I’ve felt that a Pixar movie has come into my life at just the right moment. I remember seeing Toy Story 3 with my close group of school friends when we were just entering our final year of school and starting to apply for universities. Monsters University reminded me amidst all my exams and assignments that succeeding academically isn’t all that life is. After graduating, I felt small and scared and powerless, but The Good Dinosaur encouraged me to accept my fears and face them with my head held high. I saw Cars 3 on its release date just a few hours after passing my driving test.

In Coco’s finale, Miguel sang to his great-grandmother Coco and managed to reach her. Fittingly, by hearing ‘Remember Me’, Coco’s memories of her father came flooding back, and her and Miguel were blessed with a moment of real connection and understanding. As someone who is currently losing her own grandmother to Alzheimer’s and dementia, this hit me hard. My granny can be sat in a room overflowing with her family, but look dreadfully alone and unsure. Most conversations with her are her retellings of old family stories which are slowly becoming jumbled and confused. If you ask her how her week was, you can see the frustration on her face as she fails to grasp onto slippery memories that never seem to be in the right place.

Miguel singing Mama Coco ‘Remember Me

But if you give my granny a book of poems, she reads them beautifully – she speaks with the confidence and character that I remember her having when I was younger. She doesn’t stumble over her words; she doesn’t have to struggle to remember anything. She just reads them, because they’re familiar to her. And suddenly I’m reminded of days I spent with her learning how to bake, spending summers, birthdays and Christmases with her, and listening to her (always expertly told) stories about our family going back generations. Miguel singing his great-grandmother Coco ‘Remember Me’ had the same effect as me handing my granny a book of poems. When Miguel succeeded in connecting with Coco, I felt that same wave of joy and relief as if I had just connected with my own grandmother and helped her break free temporarily from the haze and confusion of dementia. Coco came into my life at just the right time because it has encouraged me to try to have more of these meaningful moments with my granny while I still have the chance. And it’s reminded me that while my granny is slowly becoming lost, she’ll live on through our own memories and stories.

Sketch of Miguel and Mama Coco by co-director Adrian Molina

So is it just luck? Was I just lucky to have these movies to encourage me at the times I most needed them? I don’t think so. I think Pixar have a talent for creating movies that are naturally relatable and naturally strike a chord with people from all stages of life. It’s incredible that Pixar movies can feel so personal even though they’re made by thousands of people, for thousands of people. But by keeping the heartfelt messages at the very cores of their movies, they manage it.

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In Depth: How Ratatouille Inspired Me To Fulfill My Dreams

Anniversary, Brad Bird, Opinion Piece, Ratatouille

Posted by Nia • June 29, 2017

Today is the 10 year anniversary of Pixar’s Ratatouille. It’s hard to believe it’s been that long since we were last in Paris, learning how to cook alongside Remy, the rat, and Linguini, the garbage boy. Not to mention following them on their escapades through the city as they tried to covertly work together at one of the most famed Parisian restaurants.

For most of us, less culinary experienced food-lovers, it was a thrill to watch Remy create such tempting and savory dishes on the big screen. We almost forgot it was in fact an animated film and a rat was responsible for all of the colorful foods – creating unique dishes that would make even Gordon Ramsay stop in his tracks (after all, his signature dish did bring Anton Ego right back to his childhood). I was almost disappointed to find there are no rats who knew how to cook in real life or a little restaurant hidden in Paris that’s run by them. I won’t lie and say that after I watched the film for the first time, little 15-year-old me wanted to enroll in a cooking class and learn how to make food as well as Gusteau.

When the film was released, I’d just finished my freshman year of high school. There was a lot I had yet to experience in life: high school bullies, college rejection letters, heartbreak, and the cruel world of adulthood. I didn’t realize it at first, but in my worst moments, when I was doubting myself and my potential in life, the themes in Ratatouille kept me going and believing in myself.

When you look at the entirety of Ratatouille, it really is a simple film at heart. It’s about a rat, who’s always had a fascination for food and its flavors, and has always dreamed of becoming a cook. He never thought in a million years he would be cooking at Gusteau’s in Paris – the only person who truly understood him and kept him company was Gusteau himself, a figment of his imagination; giving him food tips and overall confidence boosts. It was even Gusteau who said that anyone can cook. Remy’s family didn’t really understand his love for human food, they wanted Remy to be apart of their rat civilization and way of living. But Remy always had that dream, the passion burning inside him, he never forgot about what motivated him every day; to do what truly makes him happy, even if other people doubted him or thought it was the wrong thing to do.

“Not everyone can become a great artist, but a great artist can come from anywhere.”

This quote that Anton Ego delivers at the end of the film is pinned up to my desk at work. It’s a nice reminder every day to believe in yourself, even if others don’t or even if you come from a less privileged background. I’m thankful for this quote and the meaning it’s given my life. It’s one of the most important quotes in any Pixar film and probably any animated film released in the last 10 years. It’s the type of message that’s needed, especially today; not only for children, but for adults with hidden passions or who are still struggling to fulfill their own dreams.

Looking back at Ratatouille, it’s truly taught me that it’s never too late to run after my passion; to keep going, never stop, even if it seems impossible. Since I was a child, I’ve always wanted to work in the animation industry and tell stories. When I was in college I struggled to get internships and gain experience to one day land me a job at any big studio. When I graduated, I worked the odd job here and there to save money and to get me to Los Angeles. Almost two years ago I finally landed a job at a small animation studio. There’s still so much I have yet to learn, and so much I still want to do, but it’s landing that first job in the animation industry that made my heart want to burst. And I realized then, it’s all true – anyone can cook, or paint, or write. It doesn’t matter where you come from, or what experiences you don’t have; what’s important is that you have equal potential and you’ll end up where you’re supposed to be in the end.

In short, Ratatouille is undoubtedly one of Pixar’s most charming and unique films. Like the themes that carry on throughout Up, Monsters Inc., The Incredibles, Finding Nemo, and most recently, Cars 3; the studio continues to share worthwhile lessons to children and adults alike.

Here’s to the next 10 years of inspiration and chasing after your dreams.

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