Green guy Monsters Inc
This Smack takes us far from the terror-tory of evil Godzilla, doing his best to annihilate Tokyo, or the mayhem wrought by the homicidal dinosaurs of the various Jurassic Parks. While monsters have been intimidating heavies in many of movieland’s most horrific films, that’s not the case with the lead characters in this pair of contestants, which feature bizarre, animated creatures as heroes and saviors in the twin Pixar offerings Monsters, Inc. and its new prequel, Monsters University.
Our two Monsters are cute, family-friendly comedies about the world inhabited by such beasts, who in their workaday lives are much more sympathetic and engaging than their terrifying guest appearances in childhood nightmares would suggest. This helps us root for them as they surmount a series of challenges to improve their station in life and, eventually, even save their beastly little world.
The screams you hear in the audience for these films will most likely be of laughter or delight. But only one contestant scares up a victory in this Smackdown. Read ahead at your own risk.
Short kid Mike Wazowski (voiced as a boy by Noah Johnston, and as a college student by Billy Crystal), like any halfway ambitious little creature in Monstropolis, dreams of being a great scarer when he grows up. That’s because the monster world depicted in Monsters University is powered by the bottled screams of frightened youth, so there’s an inexhaustible need for creatures with terrifying looks and the acting ability to back them up.
For all his ambition, though, Mike is a pipsqueak, a little one-eyed green guy, who wouldn’t scare a fly. But he’s intensely determined, which several years later carries him into a spot at the prestigious facility of the title. This is where his struggles really begin, as he’s in the most demanding course of study at the university (the scaring program, naturally), and hasn’t grown any taller or more outwardly intimidating across his teenage years.
The same can’t be said of James Sullivan (John Goodman), a hulking, hairy beast, who happens to be the product of a famous and celebrated family of scarers. Sulley figures he’ll ace college on genes alone and, as a result, doesn’t try too hard at his studies.
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