Tomorrowland? Or Tomorrow-bland?

"Is anything more dispiriting than a failed attempt at inspiration?"That first line of Steven Greydanus's latest film review reminds me of some of the reviews I read for Andrew Stanton's first non-Pixar feature film — the unfortunately named, and more unfortunately reviewed, John Carter. That movie and its critical reception (rejection?) were hard pills to swallow for this faithful Pixar fan. Stanton's a great storyteller, and I had been excited about his labor of Edgar Rice Burroughs lov … [Read more...]

The Incredibles (and Other 10-Year-Old Films); Jesus Films; Matt Zoller Seitz; Scott Cairns

I haven't posted any Hi 5s on ths blog in a while, but it's... um... "hi time" that I got back in the habit of it. Gratitude is good for the soul.What is Hi 5 to the Face? Find out here.Let's get started! This time, I'm sending Hi 5s to the following superstars...Ken Morefield over at 1 More Film Blog, for inviting Steven Greydanus to toast Pixar's The Incredibles, which is now ten years old! … [Read more...]

Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol (2011)

It is a pleasure to report that director Brad Bird's Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol was worth every penny of the high ticket price I will pay to see it a second and third time. In this moviegoer's opinion, it's easily the finest installment in an otherwise mediocre franchise. Moreover, it's leaves X-Men: First Class, Captain America, and the rest of 2011's glorified Saturday morning cartoons in its dust.Give me another ticket, Mr. Bird. I want to take this ride again. … [Read more...]

Ratatouille (2007)

My review of Ratatouille was originally published in June 2007 at Christianity Today Movies.-Attention, parents, kids, anybody who appreciates good movies and great food!Ratatouille is a feast so fantastic you'll go running back for seconds. And if you pay close attention, you'll also see that it's a film that tells two great stories at the same time.The first story is what you'll see on the big screen. And the second—at least the way I see it—is a more subtle, almost allegorical re-t … [Read more...]

Who should direct "The Hobbit"?

Why not Brad Bird? … [Read more...]

Don’t Underestimate the Rat in the Kitchen

Before Pixar's Ratatouille opened, the grumbling began in the industry, saying that it was too smart for kids, too sophisticated to be another Pixar smash-hit.And when it failed to break records immediately, it was quickly a subject of scandal. Was Pixar slipping? Was their focus on storytelling rather than merchandise-friendly entertainment going to cause them to slide from the lofty heights of movie storytelling? … [Read more...]

Brad Bird’s Next Flight will Be Live-Action

From The Star Online... In fact, his next film ... will be his, and Pixar's, first live action feature.Titled 1906, it is an adaptation of the James Dalessandro novel about the famous San Francisco earthquake which wrecked the city.Query him, and he is tight-lipped about the new project. But one can rest assured from this director's track record that the movie will offer a uniquely Bird's eye view. … [Read more...]

It’s A Bird … It’s a Brad Bird!

Lou Lumenick talks with the brains behind The Incredibles and The Iron Giant. … [Read more...]

The Incredibles (2004)

This review was originally published at Christianity Today in November 2004. -Kids are going to love The Incredibles, and it's possible their parents will love it even more. I'm betting a lot of dads and moms get action figures of Mr. Incredible and his wife Elastigirl in their stockings this year, and they'll be proud to display them at home or at work. While The Incredibles looks like a movie for the kid in all of us, the storytelling of writer-director Brad Bird is aimed straight at the c … [Read more...]