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Entertainment Media Analysis Report
A service to His little ones through you in His name by His Word
(2008), G [G*] (1hr 31min)
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(While the Scriptural references are certainly not subjective, my commentary may be and sometimes is somewhat subjective.)
Cast/Crew Details Courtesy Internet Movie Database
Production (US): Pixar Animation Studios, Walt Disney Pictures
Distribution (US): Redbox, Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment
Director(s): Andrew Stanton
Producer(s): Lindsey Collins,John Lasseter,Gillian Libbert,Jim Morris,Thomas Porter
Written Credits: Original Story - Andrew Stanton, Pete Docter; Screenplay: Andrew Stanton, Jim Reardon
Music: Thomas Newman
Film Editing: Stephen Schaffer
Casting: Natalie Lyon, Kevin Reher
Production Design: Ralph Eggleston. Joshua Hollander, Andrea Warren
Art Direction: Jason Deamer
Viewed on Buena Vista Home Entertainment DVD
This film analysis is sponsored by E&HP.
The story opens circa 2800 AD with Wall•E (voice of Ben Burtt), a robot trash compactor, the last robot on Earth busying himself with his job to continue to blanket the Earth with mountains of cubes of compacted garbage. It finally happened ... the Earth became smothered with trash about 700 years ago and mankind left the planet on the Axiom spaceship. For 700 years the Axiom passengers and crew pampered themselves with their satiated lives of obese laziness.
Occasionally, the Axiom Captain would send a probe back to the Earth to monitor when the Earth again became able to support life. The probes were called Extraterrestrial Vegetation Evaluators (EVEs). The story is, in part, a story about a romance between one of those probes and Wall•E.
The meeting between Wall•E and an EVE starts out with the typical Hollywood (or human?) shoot-first mentality by the EVE, affectionately called Eve (Elissa Knight) by Wall•E. As Wall•E spies Eve as she searches for life in Earth, she shoots at Wall•E with a Linda Hamilton Terminator resolve to kill. To be sure, this is an animated film with a robot as the quintessential character but personification of non-living things in and as entertainment dissolves much of the non-living veneer of the characters and makes them appear as sentient, living beings.
"...makes them appear as sentient, living beings." As Psychology Department Head Dr. Karen Nelson and practicing counselor Dr. Larry Gilliam and even our own Director - Child Psychology Support agree with me, it would be unusual for even a 16 year old to be able to fully separate fantasy from reality. If you doubt the power of entertainment to implant ideas or challenge values and beliefs, let me say the words "the poison apple." Very few need any clues to know by what film that phrase was made well known. Even our kids know from where "the poison apple" came though the phrase's parent film was released decades before they were even born. And they have seen it maybe once. How about a scene of midland beef haning from the porch?
Soon, Wall•E and the EVE begin to reconcile and discover each other ... nonverbally. But as they explore each other they come to develop a sort of communication and the EVE becomes Eve. As Eve does her job Wall•E becomes smitten with Eve and she, at first, a smidgen with he.
It isn't long before Eve finds a single plant growing out of the garbage. Finding her target, Eve reports back to her spaceship which launches to report back to the Axiom with her discovery. With such a discovery, the Axiom crew and passengers can return to the Earth!
But Wall•E did not want Eve to leave. So, if she won't or can't stay with him, he will go with her. Wall•E attaches himself to the outside of the ship and screams though a perilous trip through more garbage -- space garbage -- on his way to wherever it is Eve is going.
A couple of points of trivia. Wall•E presents a few notable connections with other films: Terminator, Robocop, Star Trek (original), Blade Runner, Toy Story, 2001: A Space Odyssey (AUTO resembles HAL) and others. The film also uses sounds from other sources such as the chirping of R2D2 of Star Wars fame plus the startup tones of the Macintosh computer. By the way the "voice" of AUTO is provided by MacInTalk of Macintosh computers. I bring up Macintosh computers because every file of the CAP website has been prepared with a Mac.
I will be so bold as to make a somewhat rare positive comment about a film. This film presents one of the best visual depictions of falling in love I have ever seen in an animated film. A great example of non-verbal communication. Kids undertand this stuff, folks. I even remember Eric, one of my sons when five years old spoke "He likes her!" while watching Grease with John Travolta and Olivia Newton John as Travolta sings a lost love song in the minor key to a "memory bubble image" of Olivia.
There is more I could say about this delightful romp into the future with an ecological message but let me get to that for which most of you visit the CAP Ministry.
As a preface to the individual investigation area content discussions that follow, let me tell you that with a final score of 95 Wall•E is one of the most "G" animated G films I have seen in a long time. Other than the film is rather freckled with violence there is little more to tell you. If you are concerned (which you should be) about the amount of violence your little ones absorb in the name of entertainment, this film is equivalent to the level of violence of most PG films in the comparative baseline database. But everything else is clearly equivalent to G-rated films.
Wanton Violence/Crime (W) - 71 out of 100
Though part of the plot/story, this film contains a rather significant amount of violence. That the violence is part of the story it does not excuse its influence to desensitize natural inhibitions against violence and reshape values. [1 Cor. 15:33, Prov. 16:29] Violence includes such content as a series of gunfire to kill, lightning strike of a personified character twice and gunfire to disable. Note that the 74 Wall•E earned in this investigation area is the only reason the film warranted the yellow CAPCon Alert light. Just 15 more points in this investigation area score and the film would have garnered a green CAPCon Alert light.
Impudence/Hate (I) - 96 out of 100
The shoot-first mentality is the only notation of impudence.
Sexual Immorality (S) - 100 out of 100
Nothing of sexually immoral behaviors or imagery were noted.
Drugs/Alcohol (D) - 100 out of 100
No instances of drinking alcoholic beverages, consumption or possession of illegal drugs. abuse of prescription drugs or using tobacco were noted.
Offense to God (O) - 100 out of 100
Not once was the use of God's name in vain noted, either with or without the four letter expletive.
Murder/Suicide (M) - 100 out of 100
No murders or suicides were noted.
If needed to focus or fortify, applicable text is underlined or bracketed [ ] or bold. If you wish to have full context available, the Blue Letter Bible is a convenient source. If you use the Blue Letter Bible, a new window will open. Close it to return here or use "Window" in your browser's menu bar to alternate between the CAP page and the Blue Letter Bible page.
***Selected Scriptures of Armour against the influence of the entertainment industry***
As always, it is best to refer to the Findings/Scoring section -- the heart of the CAP analysis model -- for the most complete assessment possible of this movie.
Wanton Violence/Crime (W) - SCORE out of 100
Impudence/Hate (I) - SCORE out of 100
Sexual Immorality (S) - SCORE out of 100
Drugs/Alcohol (D) - SCORE out of 100
Offense to God (O) - SCORE out of 100
Murder/Suicide (M) - SCORE out of 100
|There are some in the entertainment industry who maintain that 1) violent programming is harmless because no studies exist that prove a connection between violent entertainment and aggressive behavior in children, and 2) young people know that television, movies, and video games are simply fantasy. Unfortunately, they are wrong on both accounts." And "Viewing violence may lead to real life violence." I applaud these associations for fortifying 1 Cor. 15:33. Read the rest of the story. From our years of study, I contend that other aberrant behaviors, attitudes, and expressions can be inserted in place of "violence" in that statement. Our Director - Child Psychology Support, a licensed psychologist and certified school psychologist concurs. For example, "Viewing arrogance against fair authority may lead to your kids defying you in real life." Or "Viewing sex may lead to sex in real life." Likewise and especially with impudence, hate and foul language. I further contend that any positive behavior can be inserted in place of "violence" with the same chance or likelihood of being a behavior template for the observer; of being incorporated into the behavior mechanics and/or coping skills of the observer. In choosing your entertainment, please consider carefully the "rest of the story" and our findings.|
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In the name of Jesus:
Lord, Master, Teacher, Savior, God.
ChildCare Action Project (CAP): Christian Analysis of American Culture
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