"Cars" directed by John Lasseter [review]
Prescott, Nicholas Adrian
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The latest offering from the Pixar animation studio finds itself in an odd predicament. As the most recent entry in a series of astonishingly entertaining computer-animated films, Cars has an awful lot to live up to, and while the film is by no means terrible, it really does suffer from comparisons with its siblings. Pixar’s Toy Story (1995), A Bug’s Life (1998), Monsters, Inc (2001) and especially The Incredibles (2004) were all brilliantly funny and wildly entertaining; the films set successive benchmarks for the quality of computer-animation, and they all demonstrated their makers’ awareness of the one crucial element that sets extraordinary kids’ films apart from more everyday offerings – wonderful writing. Cars, by contrast, comes off as an extremely technically proficient but ultimately lacklustre effort. Extraordinarily realized in a technical sense, with cutting-edge digital animation that truly boggles the mind, Cars looks and sounds amazing: it’s the premise and the narrative itself that let the film down.