Friday, June 21, 2013

Cuddly or rabid, it's a Monster weekend.

If Sulley and Mike (of Monsters University) really want to go to scare school, they might want to go to the movies themselves this weekend and take a few lessons from Brad Pitt.

That's because Pitt's (who stars in and grabs a producer's credit) World War Z is the first big budget feature to understand what makes zombies scarier than ever before - an ability to outrun you. When dead people who want to consume you can chase you down by running and climbing, faster and farther - after all, they're not pestered by leg cramps or running out of breath - they tend to take on a new degree lethality. Add an apparent ability to think and plot en masse and... well, meet zombie 2.0.

Watching the lead-up to today's release of World War Z has been a little like witnessing the evolution of a staple monster genre. How is it that someone has finally made these things aggressive instead of just slow but relentless? And clever instead of, well, brain dead?

It all makes for a great action monster pic and that makes it the Moviedozer pick for the weekend. Here's the latest trailer. And be sure to listen for that last warning in the dialogue.

If you or your kids are more inclined to take your scares with a one eyed wink and a nod and lots of blue fur, save the zombie war for a future late night download and take the kids to Disney/Pixar's Monsters University. I can promise that the laughs will outnumber the scares by a long shot.

Unfortunately, I can also promise that you've seen it all before. In fact, likely tons of times before, while the kids sit glued to their Pixar videos. But that's a little different than plunking down the money to see it again, for the first time, in a movie theater.

Monsters University has plenty going for it and Disney knows it. I suspect that I can count myself in the first wave of Pixar fans growing a bit restless and annoyed that Pixar's genius has been "Disney'd" into a sequel house.

Not that Pixar sequels aren't still enormously entertaining (Toy Story 3 was brilliant), but it smacks of an increasing loss of vision. I'll remind you that I said that on the weekend of August 9th. That's when Disney's Pixar spins it's Cars franchise (which already has a sequel) into Planes. Given all of the modes of transportation on the planet, there's an enormous potential trend for lots of lazy movies getting made.

But for those who still find the charm in Disney's money grab - here's a look at the latest trailer for Monsters University.

Have a great weekend at the movies.

Thanks to Paramount Pictures and Walt Disney Studios for trailers and poster art.

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