I hadn’t planned on exposing my kids to Pixar so early in life — why not wait until they can “appreciate” it more, I figured — but the other kids at church today were watching Toy Story 2, so what could I do.
Then, tonight, while watching the Oscars with my family and some friends, I saw the clips from Ratatouille.
Gadzooks. What incredible leaps Pixar has made in nine years.
I’m curious now to see if Toy Story 3, which is currently slated for release in 2010, will represent yet another massive leap forward in animation technology, or if the Pixar people will feel obliged to go “retro” to keep the new film more-or-less consistent with the first two films — both of which, you will recall, were produced way back in the previous century, back in the ’90s, back in the Clinton era, etc.
It’s kind of like how Steven Spielberg has insisted the new Indiana Jones movie will avoid the newfangled digital techniques wherever possible and stick to the visual-effects techniques that the first three films used back in the ’80s, back in the Reagan era, etc.
But the Indiana Jones movies have always been retro — each film is set about 50 years in the past, and each film is modeled after the cheesy B-movies of those distant eras — so I imagine it would be kind of okay if the new one didn’t feel like the most modern thing around. The Toy Story movies, on the other hand, have always taken place more-or-less “today”, so it could be kind of odd if the new film felt like it wasn’t on the cutting edge any more.
I’d like to think that it’s the story that matters, more than anything else; and I’d like to think that audiences would appreciate an aesthetic decision in favour of the more old-fashioned look. But you never know.