Wall-E is a musical-loving, Johnny Five-looking, roving, trash compactor. This really, short, short circuit is solar-powered. He makes noises that are similar to an Apple Mac as its starting, or re-starting, or a slightly more incoherent R2-D2. His best friend is a cockroach, and he spends his spare time, collecting odds and ends, anything from umbrellas to Rubik's cubes.
Director Andrew Stanton (Finding Nemo and A Bug's Life) and the team of Disney's Pixar animation studio have created a gloriously animated film that feels and looks very tactile. Combined with the Oscar-worthy score by composer Thomas Newman, we enjoy a love story that may be about robots in an out-of-this-world adventure but touches to the very core of what we humans hold dear.
One man's trash is another man's treasure. As cliche as that is, it is essentially what Wall-E sees, and, it's his determination that allows the little robot to appreciate and help us appreciate what we now have and not to waste it.
Wall-E is after all the Earth's janitor, one hundred years from now, following all humans abandoning the planet. Apparently, people have trashed the Earth so much that it's no longer liveable, let alone recognizable.
A company, known as B&L, developed a plan. It built a large space station called the Axiom where all humans can live. In the meantime, they sent robots down to Earth to clean up the mess. Wall-E is the last surviving robot of those Waste Allocation Lift Loader-Earth class (WALL-E) machines.
Wall-E spends all day squeezing piles of garbage into tiny cubes and then stacks them in a way as to reduce the amount of space it takes up. As it stands, the entire surface of the planet is one big landfill. It's never identified, which city Wall-E is in, but every square inch is covered in real rubbish.
Wall-E is only slightly content to live out his days alone with his cockroach friend. That is until one day a robotic probe named Eve arrives. Eve looks like an elongated egg, but make no mistake, she's certainly not fragile like one. She'll blast your head off, if you make the wrong move. Yes, Eve has a laser blaster that can shoot through solid metal.
Wall-E is of course instantly attracted. It could just be his uber loneliness, or maybe it's all those romantic musicals he watched on old videotapes that he found. No matter the reason, Wall-E falls head unit over wheelbase in love.
Yet, when it comes to Eve, she's only interested in one thing. Eve is definitely a robot on a mission. She has a directive, one that's classified, and she's not going to stop until she fulfills that directive. Wall-E simply follows her around like a pathetic puppy when, like a Beatles song, all he wants is to hold her hand.
The odd thing is neither robot talks, beyond saying each other's name. Yet, the animators were able to make them very expressive and convey their emotions very well. You can tell that Wall-E is timid and shy like a teenager experiencing his first high school crush. Eve is the beautiful, strong, confident, and independent girl who is the object of his affection, who at first is so mission-centered she doesn't see Wall-E's feelings.
In the latter half of the film, the animators give us a glimpse of what life is like for humans in this future era, and it isn't pretty. For the most part, the people are more like mindless automatons than the actual robots. They look like fat slobs, too lazy to even feed themselves. The animators put a dirty box on wheels next to full-flesh human beings and the moving box looks and acts more like a person. Very excellent.
Five Stars out of Five
Rated G for appropriate for everyone
Running time: 1 hr. and 37 mins.