Pixar and the recycling of ’80s / ’90s movies


Those who thought the title character in WALL-E bears a striking resemblance to Johnny Five from the Short Circuit movies (1986-1988) will no doubt have that impression deepened by the French teaser, in which WALL-E seems to crush an insect. “Error — grasshopper disassembled. Re-assemble!” Remember that bit?

So … Pixar basically remade ¡Three Amigos! (1986) as A Bug’s Life (1998), and Doc Hollywood (1991) as Cars (2006) … and those were two of their lesser films. But since Johnny Five never went to space, it stands to reason WALL-E might not be so derivative, and thus might not be as underwhelming as those other films …

About Peter T. Chattaway

Peter T. Chattaway was the regular film critic for BC Christian News from 1992 to 2011. In addition to his film column, which won multiple awards from the Evangelical Press Association, the Canadian Church Press and the Fellowship of Christian Newspapers, his news and opinion pieces have appeared in such publications as Books & Culture, Christianity Today, Bible Review and the Vancouver Sun. He also contributed essays to the books Re-Viewing The Passion: Mel Gibson’s Film and Its Critics (Palgrave Macmillan, 2004) and Scandalizing Jesus?: Kazantzakis’s The Last Temptation of Christ Fifty Years on (Continuum, 2005).

  • http://www.nickalexander.com Nick

    And yet, when E.T. was basically remade as The Iron Giant (without the weapons agnle), nobody really batted an eye.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/07395937367596387523 Peter T Chattaway

    Actually, the weapons angle made The Iron Giant something of a parallel to Short Circuit, too. Plus The Iron Giant very openly borrowed elements from the Superman mythos. So there is a mix of things there. In any case, The Iron Giant wasn’t a Pixar film.


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