Was Monsters University good
The Star Wars prequels were an all-time low for many movie-goers, leaving a whole generation of Jedi-aficianados with psychological scars. The first of the Hobbit films, though not as bad a misstep, certainly lacked the power of its awe-inspiring predecessors. Prequels in general (which are just a special case of the much-feared sequel) have left many a bitter taste over the years, and you’d be justified to have developed a full-fledged case of prequel-phobia.
So it struck me as interesting when Pixar announced they were making a prequel to Monsters Inc., one of their best films. Despite Pixar’s stellar box office record, the recent critical flop of Cars 2 had shaken the faith of those who believed the studio could do no wrong. On the other hand, if anyone could do a prequel right, it would be the folks who single-handedly brought Disney back from the brink… and Monsters would get treated with more finesse than Cars, right?
It was thus with bated breath that I took my two-month old to see Monsters University this summer. Within minutes, my fears were allayed: she slept the entire time. But more than that, I realized Pixar had nailed it once again. This was one of the best movies they’d yet made, even rivaling the original, and in the afterglow, I not only questioned my long-standing fear of prequels, I also decided to figure out what it was Pixar had done so right.
Disclaimer: I used to work at Pixar, and have credits on several of their films and shorts. That said, I try to remain unbiased about Pixar movies—if anything, my knowledge of the company’s inner workings makes me be a better critic, since I know first-hand how awesome Pixar can be at its very best. Still, you’ll have to take my word for it that nobody asked me to review this film.
A “story world” is my way of referring to unique worlds crafted for particular stories. The term can refer to a fantasy realm like in Game of Thrones; a sci-fi future such as the world of The Matrix; a slice of Earth’s past as in Downton Abbey; or even a world of make-believe, as is the case with Monsters Inc.
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