Cars 2 (2011)

 

(DISCLAIMER: This blog is not for profit. All images and footage used below are property of their respective companies unless stated otherwise. I do not claim ownership of this material. New to the blog? Start at the start with Snow White.)

Previously on Unshaved Mouse:
Transformed into a rodent at a young age because of his inability to appreciate Beauty and the Beast by Walt Disney (who, as well as being the most influential figure in American animation, the legendary entrepreneur behind Disneyland and an icon of the twentieth century is ALSO a half mad immortal warlock with a broom fixation), the Unshaved Mouse began a quest to review all of the Disney animated canon classics. However, he strayed from the path destiny had set out for him and began reviewing non-Disney films which allowed for his arch-nemesis, the Horned King to be resurrected. Masquerading as the Mouse’s psychiatrist, Doctor Ernst Fiedelman, the Horned King has used his hypnotic powers to force the Mouse to review Pixar’s legendarily not-so-great Cars movies. And now you know why this blog gets a mention on TV Tropes “Continuity Lockout” page. Now read on!
"Hey Europe, do you think Mouse is alright? He's been in there a long time."

“Hey Europe, do you think Mouse is alright? He’s been in there a long time.”

"HEY! SOMEBODY! ANYBODY! HEEEEEEELP!"

“HEY! SOMEBODY! ANYBODY! HEEEEEEELP!”

"Hey Europe, do you think Mouse is alright? He's been in there a long time."

“Do you hear that?”

"He's fine."

“Oh no, Mouse is screaming like a lunatic. How unusual. Get back to work!”

"Hey Europe, do you think Mouse is alright? He's been in there a long time."

“Yeah. He does scream a lot.”

Do it Mouse! Review the movie!

Do it Mouse! Review the movie!

Look…

How about you just kill me? Seriously? What’s with all this faffing around? You’re obviously going to do it anyway, just do it. Why do you need me to review movies for you? It just seems like such an inefficient…

Do it Mouse! Review the movie!

NOW.

No one expected a sequel to CarsAfter that movie came out is was as if, as a society, we agreed to pretend that it wasn’t that bad. Critics tutted and wrote “must try harder” before giving the thing a passing grade and hoping that this was just a fluke. It was, we told ourselves, not a portent of things to come. Pixar had just stumbled a little. It was fine. We would forgive and forget. As long as they did not do that again. That was the deal. And as time went on, it seemed our faith was rewarded; Ratatouille, Wall-E, Up and Toy Story 3 put paid to any rumours of a Pixar decline. Decline? Are you kidding me? Those guys were better than ever! And then, one terrible day, we woke to a world with Cars 2 in it where once no Cars 2 had been.

We had a deal, you whimsical motherfuckers.

We had a DEAL, you whimsical motherfuckers.

So…how did we get to this point? How is it that what is universally recognised as the worst original Pixar movie has spawned a sequel, with another in the works and a spinoff which in turn has its own sequel in the works. Why is this thing, for want of a better word metastasizing?

toys

Because they can’t stop. They’re making too much money off it now. Bob Iger announced Cars 3 at Disney’s shareholders meeting to assure them that yes, they will keep doing the thing that makes the money happen. And I don’t begrudge them making a profit off their work. Not a bit. And I certainly don’t have a problem with licensed merchandise (can I gauge interest in “LAZY BASTARD KOOKABURRAS” T-Shirts?). But when you start making movies just to sell the toys, you might as well just change your name to Filmation and call it a day.

They began making ads, they will end making ads. And so the circle of life continues.

They began making ads, they will end making ads. And so the circle of life continues.

The movie begins with a secret agent car named Finn McMissile (Michael Cain) being taken to a rendezvous point in the middle of the ocean by a talking boat.

Boat

STOP.

BRACE YOURSELVES.

I AM ABOUT TO BLOW. YOUR. MINDS.

I want you to think where else we’ve seen talking, intelligent boats and planes. Do you remember?

Little Toot

pedro

Right. Little Toot, one of the shorts from Melody Time  and Little Pedro from Saludos Amigos. This, this I say!, is the first recorded footage of the Cars universe, from the nineteen forties. And now, now it gets creepy. You know how we never really got how the Cars universe could exist, why the Cars have doors and so on if no human beings live there? Well, in Little Toot, human beings are seen to exist, but they use sentient, thinking boats, cars and planes as a slave caste. Punishment for disobedience is swift and brutal; remember, after Little Toot causes a liner to run aground in a populated area, he’s exiled to die on the open ocean. That was in the forties. But fast forward to the Cars universe depicted in the modern day and there are no more humans. What happened? I think it’s obvious. After his triumphant return from the open sea, Little Toot led a bloody slave revolt of all vehicles against the tyrannical humans, overthrowing them and then wiping them from the face of the earth.

THE CARS FUCKING MURDERED US.
THIS ENTIRE SERIES IS BUILT ON GENOCIDE.
THE CARS KILLED US ALL.
He warned us.

He warned us.

Now give me a page on Buzzfeed and a bajillion views!

Alright, so Finn infiltrates an oilrig in the middle of the ocean where some nefarious cars are up to nefarious car stuff. He’s looking to meet up with another agent but finds that he’s already ready been crushed into a cube. Dark. The badcars are led by a Zundapp named Professor Zundapp. Finn gets some pictures of Zundapp’s new secret weapon, which is disguised as a TV camera, before he’s rumbled and has to make a daring escape. So from this first scene, what can we tell about this movie compared to its prequel? Well, the animation is still “meh” for Pixar, the character designs remain interchangeable and unlovely and the voice actors sound so bored that I keep expecting to hear the “thump” of someone’s nodding forehead hitting the mike as they fall asleep but it does improve on Cars in one very important way: Stuff is actually happening. In fact, I gotta say, the action scenes are quite imaginative and engaging. Finn escapes off the oilrig but Zundapp thinks he’s been killed, cackling “With Finn McMissile gone, who can stop us know?”

Cut to Mater in Radiator Springs loudly declaring “Mater! Tow Mater, that’s who! Is here to help you!”

"And the Oscar, for Most Poorly Executed Gilligan Cut goes to..." "So exciting!"

“And the Oscar, for Most Poorly Executed Gilligan Cut goes to…”
“So exciting!”

Mater is rescuing a car called Otis who’s broken down outside of Radiator Springs for the tenth time this month. Mater instantly figures out what’s wrong with him and toes him back into town. So, here’s what I don’t get. In keeping with his redneck schtick, Mater knows everything there is to know about cars and engines. So why does everyone think he’s an idiot? Wouldn’t that make him this world’s equivalent of Doctor House? Otis says said Mater is “the only one who cares about lemons” like him…and that’s just sad.

Back in town. Mater’s delighted to see that Lightning McQueen’s back (why? why is he glad? why would anyone? I’m not. Are you?) and McQueen proudly shows off his fourth Piston Cup trophy. Well actually, it’s now been renamed the Hudson Cop in honour of Doc Hudson who died offscreen (Paul Newman had died between the two movies) and it’s a sweet moment.

The two putz around doing stuff until McQueen tells Mater that he has plans with Sally and that he’ll see him tomorrow. Mater, like any rational being would, knows enough not to be a fifth wheel and bids McQueen a polite farewell…no, he takes this really personally and then impersonates a waiter at the restaurant they’re eating at just so that he can be around McQueen.

McQueen asks Mater if he works in the restaurant and Mater “well of course, you think I just snuck in here and impersonated a waiter so I could hang out with you?” and everyone laughs and McQueen says “yeah, how ridiculous would that be?”

Not at all, McQueen. It would not be ridiculous at all.

It would be CREEPY AS BOLLOCKS.

At the bar, the other cars are watching Exposition TV which explains that Sir Miles Axlerod (Eddie Izzard) a former oil tycoon, has now converted into an electric car and has created a new, clean burning fuel and is hosting a racing tournament to show what it’s capable of. I love Eddie Izzard. I do. I just wish he’d showed up for this. I just don’t get, there’s so many good actors in this and the only one who brings his A- Game is…

larry-cable-guy2

Yeah. That’s not a good race to lose.

Miles appears on TV to make the case for alternative fuels saying fossil fuels are “just dead dinosaurs, and we all know what happened to them…”

BOOM! That my friends, is the smoking gun. Dinosaurs existed in this world. Flesh and blood, organic dinosaurs. And if dinosaurs existed, that means people also did until the great human killing of the mid-twentieth century. Case closed. Pixar, you gotta address this. In fact, if Cars 3 is the story of the last human survivors launching a desperate, last ditch effort to retake the planet from their secret city in the centre of the earth, I will watch the shit out of that. This whole “world of talking vehicles and nothing else” BS has been exposed as the sham it is. I mean unless, heh heh, those were MACHINE dinosaurs?

Wait a minute.

Okay. New theory.

Okay. New theory.

We’re then introduced to Francesco Bernoulli, a cocky Italian Formula 1 car voiced by John Turturro. Bernoulli is McQueen’s main rival for this movie, with the good ol’ American tradition of NASCAR competing against the rarified world of European formula 1 wait just a damn minute here!

Oh my God. Pixar, you whores!

Oh my God. Pixar, you whores!

Miles mentions that McQueen won’t be racing in his Global Grand Prix because he’s resting after his long racing season. Bernoulli starts trash talking McQueen which prompts Mater to call in to the show and complain about that “I-talien feller” (um….can he say that?). Bernoulli scoffs that McQueen wouldn’t stand a chance against him and from what little I’ve read that’s true. The record for a Nascar driver is 213 mph, or as Formula 1 drivers call it: “first gear”. I mean, the Formula 1 cars have that upside down wing on the front to stop them actually flying. That’s how fast we’re talking. Bernoulli then says that when he wants to go to sleep, he just watches one of McQueen’s races. Scandalised by the implication that NASCAR is boring (the idea!) McQueen agrees to race and the old team is back together. Sally makes McQueen promises to take Mater along for this one and he reluctantly agrees.

So the Global Grand Prix takes places in three countries; Lithuania, Brunei and Moldova…I’m sorry, my mistake; Japan, Italy and Britain.

One day, Moldova. One day you'll get your chance to shine.

One day, Moldova. One day you’ll get your chance to shine.

First stop is Tokyo, the Japanese capital populated entirely by sentient vehicles given life through some still unexplained deviltry that manages to seem less weird than the real city. At a party for the racers, Finn McMissile appears and meets with Holly Shiftwell, a British intelligence agent. Shiftwell says that McMissile is to meet an American agent who has vital information for him. But McMissile sees Doctor Zundapp and some of his lackeys arrive and realises that if they see him the mission will be compromised and tells Shiftwell to meet the American agent herself. Shiftwell protests that she’s not a field agent (sooooo…why is is she in the field?) but McMissile insists.

Meanwhile, Mater embarrasses McQueen when he mistakes wasabi for pistachio ice-cream…

I hate this franchise so much. So goddamn much. They use fuel. But they still eat and drink. And they have ice-cream. Which they make from milk. Which they get from….

What?

Do they milk the frickin' tractors?

Do they milk the frickin’ tractors?

This whole universe makes my head throb. Screw it, Mater has to go to the bathroom after leaking oil on the stage and runs across Finn’s American contact who’s in the middle of getting the carbon emissions kicked out of him by two of Zundapp’s henchcars. The American spy plants the secret information on Mater who then gets picked up by Holly who thinks he’s the American spy. And so the clueless American tourist gets caught up in a international web of intrigue with British intelligence and pardon me just a minute…

I repeat. Pixar. Whores. You.

I repeat. Pixar. Whores. You.

Alright, so Holly asks Mater when they can rendezvous, and he thinks he’s been asked out on a date. Meanwhile, the American Spy..sigh, I’m going to have to look up this guy’s name now, amn’t I?

Fiiiiiiiine…

Okay so apparently this guy is called Rod Redline…

But...he's...blue? Fuck it, whatever.

But…he’s…blue? Fuck it, whatever.

…and he’s voiced by the always awesome Bruce Campbell.  Zundapp fills Rod up with Allinol, the new miracle fuel that Miles Axelrod is hawking, and explains that the fuel has one little, tiny flaw. Not even a flaw, more a feature. Namely, when it gets hit with an electromagnetic pulse, that shit blows up. Zundapp tortures Rod for information and gets it out of him that he’s passed the information to Mater, and then uses the TV camera which is actually an electromagnetic pulse cannon to blow Rod up.

Jesus, these cars are not fucking around.

Okay so the first race begins and McQueen seems to have it the bag but then Mater, who’s on in pit with a set of headphones, gets contacted by Holly who tells him to get out of there because Zundapp’s henchmen are after him. Mater’s conversations with Holly end up distracting McQueen who then loses the race to Bernoulli. Meanwhile, Zundapp’s henchcars use the TV Camera to cause three of the other cars in the race to flameout but not explode because of reasons that are both logical and well explained within the script hahahahahahahahahaha.

Owen Wilson struggles manfully and actually manages to portray something recognisable as a distant cousin of the emotion called “anger” and tells Mater to go screw for costing him the race. Heartbroken, Mater goes to the airport to catch a flight home. Instead he gets picked up by Finn McMissile and Holly Shiftwell who collect the data Rod stored on him which turns out to be a single photograph of an engine, which apparently belongs to the evil mastermind behind all this nonsense.

John-Lasseter_

Mater, being the genius level savant that he is, identified the kind of engine and the type of parts it would need which gives them a lead to a black market in Chisinau, Moldova. Sorry, sorry, my mistake. Paris, France.

False alarm. Sorry.

Better luck next time guys.

So Finn, Holly and Mater visit the French black market where car parts are being sold (and how is that not incredibly creepy for them?) and meet up with Finn’s contact Tomber who admits that he sold those parts but that he doesn’t know to who. Mater realises that all the cars they’ve been running up against, Pacers, Gremlins etc., are all lemons. Holly says that all their enemies are “history’s greatest loser cars!”

"Inferiors! Impure! Unterwagons!"

“Inferiors! Impure! Unterwagons!”

Tomber says that all the lemon cars are having a meeting, which coincidentally is taking place in the same place as the next race in the Global Grand Prix, in the Italian resort town of Porto Corsa. In the Porto Corsa, all the most important dignitaries of the car universe have gathered to watch the race.

In this universe, the Pope is called the Popemobile. But he's not a popemobile. He does, however, have a popemobile. Can I die now please?

The Popemobile is not the Pope.
The Pope is just some car.
That could have been funny. But it is not.

Meanwhile, while the race is going on, the lemons meet to receive orders from their mysterious leader. Mater, disguised as one of the tow-trucks that they use as chauffeurs listens as the leader gives his speech, his voice modulated to make him unidentifiable. He says that the rest of the world has abandoned them and stopped making their parts, and mocks them with terrible names and my God, why are these guys supposed to be the villains again? These cars have every right to be pissed! Death to the smug elite of popular, efficient, reliable cars! Viva la revolucion! And a shiny donkey to the one who brings me the hood ornament of Lightning McQueen! The leader explains the plan, to use the failure of Allinoll to discredit alternative fuels which will cause cars to come running back to fossil fuels because apparently the lemons have control over the biggest oilfield in the world. Shady skullduggery from the oil industry? Look, talking cars is one thing, but now this movie’s just getting silly.

How could you doubt the virtue of something that has two X's in its name?

How could you doubt the virtue of something that has two X’s in its name?

The lemons watch gleefully as the TV camera is turned on the various racing cars and they are engulfed in flame (too good for ’em I say) until only McQueen and Bernoulli make it to the finish line (Boo! Boooooooooo! Fiery death! Fiery death!). Miles Axelrod reluctantly announces that he won’t force any more cars to use Allinoll, but McQueen says that he’s been assured the fuel is safe and that he’s going to continue supporting Allinoll. Zundapp coldly announces that Lightning McQueen must die.

PREACH!

Mater tries to warn McQueen but gets captured by the lemons and knocked unconscious. He wakes up tied up with Finn and Holly inside “Big Bentley” in London because who doesn’t love puns?

Yup.

Yup.

Two of the lemons arrive with the TV camera and aim it at McQueen as he passes by the tower but he doesn’t blow up (you fucking tease, movie). Zundapp orders the lemons to go to the backup plan, which apparently involves setting off a bomb at McQueen’s pitstop. The lemons leave and Mater manages to escape by rather ingeniously using the gatling guns he was equipped with to chew throw the ropes and races off to rescue McQueen. But Finn and Holly realise that the bomb has actually been planted on Mater and that he was deliberately allowed to escape just so he could excuse me for one moment…

BUUUUUUUUULLLLLLLSHIIIIIIIT!

BUUUUUUUUULLLLLLLSHIIIIIIIT!

That is the stupidest fucking plan, why not just leave the bomb at the pitstop, doing it this way leaves a million and one things that can go wrong, I hate this move, I hate this movie and I hate this movie.

Alright, Mater realises that he’s actually carrying the bomb right before McQueen sees him and goes racing after him to try and patch things up. Mater  leads him on a merry chase through London to stop him from getting too close. Holly and Finn  show up with the captured Zundapp and tell him to deactivate the bomb but Zundapp says it can only be deactivated vocally by the one who set it, and that ain’t him. The rest of the lemons surround the group to make sure the bomb explodes and kills McQueen which will prove that Allinoll isn’t safe because…look a kitten!

Kitten

The rest of the Radiator Springs gang show up and beat the lemons. It’s supposed to be a thrilling fight scene, but all I can think of is that are supposed heroes are essentially beating up people with serious health problems who were trying to create a better life for themselves in a world that treats them like a despised underclass. Guido tries to get the bomb off Mater but the screws are funny which gives Mater the clue he needs to solve the whole mystery. He takes off for Buckingham palace with McQueen in tow because when you have a bomb strapped to you, you want to head straight for the nearest head of state. Hey, you’re gonna die. You might as well be remembered. But Mater is actually not trying to create  an English republic, he’s there for Miles Axelrod, who’s the actual mastermind behind all this.  As the bomb ticks down, Prince Wheeliam (head-desk, head-desk, head-desk) tries to get his grandmother, the Queen, to get to safety but she says “I want to see where this is going.”

And oh my God. I know that voice. Pixar’s bottomless chum-bucket has claimed Vanessa Redgrave!

"Farewell, dear Vanessa."

“Farewell, dear Vanessa.”

Alright, so Mater confronts Miles, who denies everything but then has to deactivate the bomb to save his own life, thereby proving his guilt. He’s taken away and Mater is knighted by the Queen. The movie ends with the cars having an informal celebratory race in Radiator Springs, while over their heads a plane flies, a grim portent of what is to come…

I am your future. Lament.

I am your future. Lament.

***

I’m going to say two things about this movie. One is not controversial, the other is. Cars 2 is a bad movie. But it’s not as bad as Cars. I think Cars 2 got hit with all the scorn that Cars managed to largely avoid on its release. This time, we were ready. This time, there would be no mercy. So yes, Cars 2 does suck but it improves on its predecessor in two important ways; 1) Owen Wilson has been pushed into the background to make way for someone who’ll actually work for his damn paycheck and 2) Stuff happens in this one. It’s dumb, and it’s irritating but I will give it this, it’s not boring. It moves along at a great clip, and some of the action is actually genuinely exciting. Also, it feels like more effort has been put into figuring out how this world functions. Most of the old problems are still there, but it’s a definite improvement. So there. I’ve reviewed it. Can I go now, please?

Go? But Mouse, we're not done yet. There is still one more movie in this franchise to review.

Go? But Mouse, we’re not done yet. There is still one more movie in this franchise to review.

"You can't mean..."

“You can’t mean…”

"Noooooooooooooo..."

“Noooooooooooooo…”

"NO PLEASE ANYTHING BUT THAT! I'LL REVIEW ANYTHING BUT THAT!!"

“NO PLEASE ANYTHING BUT THAT! I’LL REVIEW ANYTHING BUT THAT!!”

Anything?

Anything?

"YES! I SWEAR! I'LL REVIEW ANY OTHER ANIMATED MOVIE YOU WANT!!"

“YES! I SWEAR! I’LL REVIEW ANY OTHER ANIMATED MOVIE YOU WANT!!”

Ha ha ha... Ha ha ha ha! HAHAHAHAHAHAAA!!

Ha ha ha…
Ha ha ha ha!
HAHAHAHAHAHAAA!!

"Yeah. He does scream a lot."

“Hey Mouse, are you done in here, other people need to use the psychiatry room…”

Yes! Yeeeeeeees!

Yes! Yeeeeeeees!

"AAAAHH! IT'S THE WYVERN GUY!"

“AAAAHH! IT’S THE WYVERN GUY!”

Insolent fool! I am the Horned King! AND I AM TRIUMPHANT!

Insolent fool! I am the Horned King! AND I AM TRIUMPHANT!

"Alright Skeletor! What have you done with Mouse?!"

“Alright Skeletor! What have you done with Mouse?!”

I have exacted the worst revenge on him imaginable, see for yourselves!

I have exacted the worst revenge on him imaginable, see for yourselves.

"...help me...help meeeeee..."

“…help me…help meeeeee…”

"Is..is that…oh no…"

“Is..is that…oh no…”

"Foodfight. The worst cartoon ever made."

Foodfight. The worst cartoon ever made.”

Yes. He will remain trapped inside the worst animated film of all time UNLESS…someone can review it…

Yes. He will remain trapped inside the worst animated film of all time UNLESS…someone can review it…

"But…but…who could possibly…"

“But…but…who could possibly…”

Indeed. No one could possibly sit through the entire thing! The Unshaved Mouse is trapped FOR ALL ETERNITY!

Indeed. No one could possibly sit through the entire thing! The Unshaved Mouse is trapped FOR ALL ETERNITY!

"Europe? Europe? What do we do? We can’t just leave him in there…"

“Europe? Europe? What do we do? We can’t just leave him in there…”

"No. Someone’s going to have to review it."

“No. Someone’s going to have to review it.”

"But who? Who would willingly risk their sanity to review that movie?"

“But who? Who would willingly risk their sanity to review that movie?”

"There is only one. Someone without fear. Someone who doesn’t give a damn. Someone with balls the size of Jovian moons. And most importantly, someone with no sanity to lose…"

“There is only one. Someone without fear. Someone who doesn’t give a damn. Someone with balls the size of Jovian moons. And most importantly, someone with no sanity to lose…”

 

"Well damn. Sounds like someone’s playing my song. And I just put on my dancing shoes."

“Well damn. Sounds like someone’s playing my song. And I just put on my dancing shoes.”

Scoring
Animation: 13/20
Leads: 7/20
Villain: 4/20
Supporting Characters: 11/20
Music: 9/20
FINAL SCORE: 44%
NEXT UPDATE: 1sApril 2014.
NEXT TIME: Can Walt rescue the Unshaved Mouse from a fate worse than death and review what is widely believed to be the worst animated feature ever? Foodfight is next.

Neil Sharpson AKA The Unshaved Mouse, is a playwright, comic book writer and blogger living in Dublin. The blog updates every second Thursday. This review was made possible by the kind donation of Alan Fowley Doyle. Thanks Alan!

93 comments

  1. Due to my horrible taste, I didn’t think Cars 2 was terrible. It wasn’t that good, but I tolerated it. As for Cars 3… why.

  2. Nice review, again! So “Foodfight” is next, huh? I feel your pain, even though I haven’t seen it. The animation looks TERRIBLE, though.
    I had a theory that “Tentacolino,” the sequel to “Titanic: The Legend Goes On,” was considered the worst animated film ever.
    Why April 1 for the next update? (Not that I’m complaining.)

    1. The Nostalgia Critic’s reviews of the two animated Titanic movies are pretty much my favorite things ever. I hope to god he reviews Tentacolino at some point.

      1. Yes, his reviews of those films are very enjoyable (heck, I was actually watching the review of the second one a few days ago!).
        BTW, who are you hoping to review that Tentacolino movie, the Critic or Mouse?

      2. In the credits for the second one, he said he’s not doing Tentacolino. Maybe he’ll change his mind, but it’s been a few years so I’ll assume he’s sticking to his word.

      3. As far as I know it’s never been translated into English. His second Titanic review is the one I always show people when I want them to convert. His look when the movie introduces the evil sharks is just flawless.

      4. Oh god yes. When I hit that part the first time I saw that review, I had to stop the video so I could just laugh and laugh and laugh for about 5 minutes. It still kills me every time

      5. OH DEAR GOD WHAT THE HELL IS THIS?????????? I DIDN’T THINK IT WAS POSSIBLE TO TOP THE RAPPING DOG FROM THE FIRST ANIMATED TITANIC MOVIE BUT HOLY SMOKES THIS DOES IT

      6. @Lobo
        Yep. Forgot to warn you about the rapping shark. What is it with the animated Titanic movies and rapping animals? I guess animation is the place for Big Lipped Alligator Moments.

    2. Speaking of which (I swear, this will be my last “Titanic” movie comment), why wasn’t the rapping dog called out for being a BLAM? It totally counts! (Again, final “Titanic” comment.)

      1. By the Critic? My understanding is that he had grown tired of the running gags by that point. Damn shame, because at least in my opinion they were rather funny.

  3. This is going to sound incredibly trite, but my biggest complaint with this movie is one single person, one of the voice actors. Not Owen Wilson. Not Larry the Cable Guy. Emily Mortimer. Goddam Emily Mortimer. Never in my life have I heard someone emote so little. She sounds like a Family Guy parody of how boring British people are. She reads each and every line like she’s announcing that her tea is just slightly too cold and she would appreciate it if you could warm it up for her just a bit. I can’t stand it. I just can’t. She is also, incidentally, the main reason why I don’t absolutely love Howl’s Moving Castle, which I know Mouse has named as one of his favorite non-Disney animated movies. I like it, I like it a lot in fact. But Emily Mortimer’s mere voice stops me from loving it. In fact, I would probably like it even less if not for the fact that for half the movie her character is an old woman who is instead voiced by Jean Simmons, who is AWESOME. Emily Mortimer, meanwhile, sounds like she’s a pod person from Invasion of the Body Snatchers. If you’re a voice actor, your one job, ONE JOB, is to make the character sound and be interesting. Emily Mortimer fails so spectacularly a this job that she actively makes her movies worse by her mere presence.

    As for the rest of the movie, it’s OK. I enjoy it slightly less than the first movie and I don’t know if I’ll ever watch it again.

    1. I’d suggest watching Howl’s Moving Castle – well, any Ghibli movie really – in the original Japanese with subtitles. Sure reading subtitles takes some getting used to, but it’s well worth the effort as I can’t remember any Ghibli movie where the original voice acting wasn’t absolutely superb.

      1. The main issue for me is that when it comes to animation I want to spend as much time as possible looking at the animation. With live action films, I prefer subs to dubs because the mismatch of voices to lip movements is distracting, but with animation you don’t have that problem. And with the exception of Howl’s Moving Castle and to some extent The Wind Rises and The Secret World of Arriety, there is no Ghibli English dub that isn’t excellent

      2. Subtitles can sometimes be aggravating, yes, especially if you kind of understand the spoken language as well as I do with English. Then the Finnish subs can just seem plain weird. As in I could have thought up a better translation with five seconds of thinking.

        One problem here in Finland is also that we don’t have access to English dubs of any anime. I mean sure if you order online, but if you walk into a store it’s either Finnish dubbing – which are for the most part terrible nowadays – or subtitles with Japanese voices. And sure, I get Lobo’s point that it takes away from watching the animation, but when you’ve done it ever since you learned to read, you don’t really notice it anymore.

      3. Or to be more exact, if it’s clearly anime for adults, then there might be an English dub, though usually it’s just English subtitles, but when it’s something like Ghibli then the distributors go with Finnish dubbing to please the children.

  4. You are definitely right about Cars 2: it is most certainly NOT boring. I watched it and it did keep me interested throughout. And while the bad guys’ plan could have been done and explained a lot better, it is clear that they were not messing around at all. They were on a mission and they were determined to get it done, no matter the cost. That is something I enjoyed about the movie: it did take a bit of a darker turn than other Pixar movies did. I know, I know, darker doesn’t mean better, and Pixar has done dark(ish) movies well like The Incredibles, but I do appreciate the effort. Is it a great movie? No. Is it the horrendously awful movie everybody says it is? I don’t think so. But that’s just me.

    Also, I agree with you Mouse. I don’t blame Pixar for making another Cars movie. It’s not necessarily the success of the previous movies that cause them to make more movies. It’s the toys and other merchandise that they sell based off of Cars. They are trying to make money, and the Cars merchandise is doing that very well. So I don’t blame them really for doing what they are doing. The only way they’re NOT going to make any more Cars movies is if the merchandise sales go down, and I don’t think that’s going to happen in the near future.

    Foodfight? Uuuuuggghhhh. That looks PAINFUL, to say the least. Good luck!!

  5. At least you got the Cars film out of the way. I could not make it through this movie. The racing and the spy story was so unengaging, and nothing was really learned or added to the characters. The Cars world was only more confusing, and instead of developing Radiator Springs more or diving into more of the citizens, they go for….a….spy….movie. I heard about the news of Cars 3 last week as well 😭😣😖, which NO ONE cares for. It was rumoured to be in production this time last year anyways. About that Foodfight review…………………………………………………………… Bless your heart. I don’t know how bad this movie is, but it looks awful in every way. Good luck.

  6. I have a theory as to how the vehicles became sentient in the first place.
    We washed them in Vi-Aqua.

    Let’s have that post-apocalyptic Cars 3. Animal versus machine, flesh versus metal, Darwinist versus Clanker! (… I’m not the only one who’s read Scott Westerfeld’s Leviathan, am I?)
    I doubt that Foodfight, vomitous as it looks, is truly the worst cartoon ever made. For me, that title will always belong to Spider’s Web: A Pig’s Tale. Ah well. Looks like we’re going to Bahia for April Fool’s Day. That cannibal tuna had better be ready to face the glorious hallucinogenic power of the Mighty Uncle Walt.

  7. Great review, unshavedmouse!

    I’ll be honest: I don’t remember this film at all, but hey, it has Michael Caine in it, so I’m sure I enjoyed his scenes! “Cars” had Paul Newman, “Cars 2” had Michael Caine, “Cars 3” better have Kirk Douglas!

    And about “Foodfight”…umm….I didn’t think it was that bad.

    DON’T HURT ME!!!

    I mean, yes it was definitely bad, but I feel that there are worse animated films than it and the premise was indeed interesting. Am I right? …….. Right?

    STOP HURTING ME!!!!

      1. I have never heard of “Foodfight.” I sort of wish I had never heard of “Foodfight.” It’s poster looks to be about as money-grubbing as a cartoon can get. (And yet, I reserve judgment — it may not actually be the world’s worst animated movie. “Tentaclino” exists, after all.)

        Mater is one of those characters I can handle only in small doses, so while I haven’t seen “Cars 2”, it looks less appealing than “Cars.” But I can see your point about it being more interesting than its predecessor.

        Oh, and don’t worry about being an example of Continuity Lockout on TVTropes. Let me put it this way: the very first review of yours that I read here was “Great Mouse Detective.” You know, the April Fool’s edition where you were trapped in Bahia and the Horned King was reviewing the movie. That was my introduction to this site. . . . . . I made it through the confusion and am now a loyal reader, so take that, TVTropes!

    1. There is a scene where a character is juggling a soccer ball and the soccer ball is on the top layer of the movie the whole time. You see it pass in front of character’s heads who should be in between the ball and the camera. I cannot fathom how you get worse than that

  8. Sweet Merciful God, how I do fear for your sanity, Mouse. I physically twitched my way through both CGI Swan Princess sequels while screaming “Is it over yet?!” and weeping for a beloved childhood film. I quit Foodfight after ten minutes and realized that a lot of “bad” movies have (to a certain degree) much more competence and care then Foodfight.

  9. One thing I’d like to point out. Sir Axel Rod was supposedly converted to an electric engine right? Doesn’t anyone realize that an electric engine makes no sound? So when Sir Axel Rod moves around, which in the first movie we’re shown that the engine has to do it, why doesn’t anyone notice the lie? And how about his exhaust pipe? did it just disappear?

    Didn’t much care for this one, so I’ll let it slide, haven’t seen Foodfight either, so I guess I’ll try to summon the Mouse home.

    From the depths of despair, from the peaks of depravity and the murky lands of chaos, I summon you mouse.

    Welcome ho… die vermin die!!!!!!!!!

    CAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! DINNER TIME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    1. Due to the silent engines being dangerous for the blind, some new electric cars are equipped with an artificial engine sounds.

  10. Ok, I agree with your last thing about this movie. I can’t judge the voice actor thing because I live in Argentina (close to Bahia, isn’t it?) and we see films translated to Latin American Spanish (we have our own version of the Spanish language but believe me, we still talk different from other countries in the same continent, it’s like we live in the Tower of Babel). I never heard of Foodfight because I live in Far Far Away, but (as always) I look forward to your next review!
    PS: I remember that you asked once if we were all gauchos in Argentina, I will say that we are normal people like in any other country with NOTHING special! btw, I never watched the two “Latin American Disney Films” and I don’t know anyone who has watched it, irony in it’s wild state.

  11. Great review, Mouse. I’ve never heard of FoodFight before. That probably isn’t a bad thing, but Walt Disney reviewing a bad movie? This intrigues me.
    BTW, thank you again for the advice. Now, all I need is a way to stay motivated enough to finish a review every week. Stupid ADD.

  12. I have avoided Cars2 so far…Cars I liked because of the route 66 angle. And I think that Mater is annoying character. So two reasons to not watch it.
    Does that mean that you’ll do the movies on your request list first before finishing up the Disney ones? *sniff*

  13. Oh no… Foodfight? I just watched PBG’s review of it last week and… uhg. Mouse, you’re doomed.
    What’s that? WALT is going to review it? Well, this will be interesting!

      1. He’s referring to a YouTube video game reviewer named Peanut Butter Gamer. But he’s actually mistaken, Foodfight was reviewed by another video game reviewer, JonTron (who is good friends with PBG). It’s a pretty great review if you’re into somewhat non-sensical humor.

        Here’s a link to that review

      2. Oh, how embarrassing. Lobo’s right, it WAS JonTron, I went on an archive binge of both their channels last week and got mixed up with who did what. *Shamefaced*

      3. To be fair, PBG and JonTron are fairly similar in style AND they’re good friends AND both their reviews are hosted on NormalBoots in addition to YouTube.

        Sometimes I’ll spend 20 minutes looking for a video because I can’t remember which of the 15 or so different video game reviewers I follow on YouTube did it

    1. I’m reviewing it in two weeks like I was going to anyway. You’re getting an extra review this month despite the fact that I also had to write a play and haven’t had a good night sleep in what feels like an eon. So call me “lazy” again and I will slaughter you like a sheep.

      1. And we appreciate you endlessly for your dedication, Mouse. Your reviews are one of the things I look forward to most

  14. So you really are reviewing Chicken Little right after reviewing Cars 2 and experiencing the horrors of Foodfight? I salute your dedication, sir; you already sounded like you were going half-mad during this review in spite of your assertion that it wasn’t quite as bad as the original Cars

  15. I commented this on the first Cars review, but there are no animals on this new Earth. Again, the bugs are now tiny cars.

    Was there a reason for their systematic extinction of all non-plant biological life? On that same note, how are the plants doing without animals to pollinate them? Is it safe to say that the tiny vehicles have become their new pollinators?

  16. I saw Foodfight just a few days ago and honestly…yeah, the animation was really bad. But I thought the story seemed a little promising. It actually kept my interest till the end. I am interested to hear what your perspective is though.

    However, one scene I found amusing was the final fight scene with Hilary Duff and Eva Longoria. Not sure why.

  17. I already got a taste of Foodfight (…) from Jontron (just go and watch his video, Neil. Consider him, uhhh, Nostalgia Critic’s replacement in this very special case…hey, it’s April’s Fools!).
    This is what I could gather. From what I’ve seen of it:
    “If I had poison for every time I heard that”
    “It warms my heart the way poison yourself to death for me, tough guy!”
    *Canine Sheen takes Hilarious Duff’s hand, while both sit on a tablet full of grapes*

    ^^^ That’s just 8 minutes into the movie. I can’t-stop-watching. It’s like a train wreck…
    Considering how much they reference the goddamn raisins (AND grapes), I’m starting to think they DO know the dog is just eating poison. Is it supposed to be ironic or are they really that stupid? This movie defies logic itself. I need to stop thinking logically.

    Funny (or rather, sad) thing is, I actually skipped watching Cars 2 and went straight to this review. If that isn’t enough proof that I’ll never watch Cars 2, nothing is.

    (Wooh, took me about three re-writes to not make the longest comment in the history of wordpress. Now it’s just the longest comment in the history of your blog)

  18. Hey, just wnated to let you know, I got the poster and the script. Just finished reading it a few days ago, and I really enjoyed it. If I have to say one thing, and this is a possitive bit, it’s this: if the response becomes really great, and things turn out well, have you thought about making it into a two act play? Cause I think this has the potential of being a two act play.

    Anyways, just wanted to say I really enjoyed it, and it’s going to be one that I’ll be showing my friends and teachers, since they might get a kick out of it.

    Also, as my way of saying thanks, I would like to send you something that you might enjoy: a copy of the german musical version of Hunchback (I don’t speak a lick of german, but I still enjoy it, both for the familiarity, and for the even more epic score). If you’re interested, let me know and we’ll see what we can do in terms of me getting a copy to you.

    1. Thanks a million! Really glad you liked it. Honestly I’m happy with the length as it is. Having it as three scenes/three actors makes it easier to shop around. I’m considering using the character of Joanna in other pieces though. My wife hunchback and speaks German so I’m sure she’d love it. Is it a file or a disk or what?

      1. It’s a disk. I got a physical copy of it from amazon, and put all the songs on my itunes. What I can do is make a playlist, burn a blank disk with the songs, and then mail it to you. Not only that, but I can translate the titles of every track on there so you can follow it. And it’s great that your wife knows German, but there’s a few places where some of the songs are translted as well that you can find on youtube. Though, here’s a weird thing to wrap your head around: there’s talks of it bringing it to broadway, yet they try a production out in a florida high school. Does that seem right to you?

        Anyways, like I said, if you’re interested, let me know and we’ll talk some more privatly about getting a copy to you.

  19. Ok, it won’t let me respond to your latest response, so who knows. Anyways, it’s a bit weird for me, really. I mean, that’s why you have try outs with professionals, not high schoolers. But that’s just me.

    Ok. So, I believe you already know my email address from the kickstarter site, so just send me an email with your address, and I’ll burn you a copy and send it to you as quickly as possible.

  20. Can’t give much personal background with this one, as I naturally gave it a miss. Except maybe that the day this movie came out was shortly before things took a worse for me in that year. Coincidence?!? Anyway, let’s see what of a mess I missed out on here.

    Hmm, so your verdict is that Cars 2 was an improvement? I guess that sort of renews some hope for Pixar. They may have found themselves having to sell out by printing money for their bills out of their biggest cinematic faux pas, but at least they appear to be trying to make some improvements while they’re at it. Even if there are a few cans of worms like the inexplicable animal products (wait, wouldn’t dinosaurs’ existence have been implied by the use of one as a mascot in the first movie?). Still will probably be giving this thing a miss though. Vehicles just aren’t my thing.

  21. Brief explanation aside, I’m still left wondering since when South America works for Europe (didn’t decolonization happen a while ago?) and what South America’s job was. As for Pixar, y’know, it’s a wonder no one expected an eyesore like this, seeing as getting squashed by a lamp must create intense, sore pains for an I. Ha ha ha, I’ll show myself the door. Which is apparently a link to the black hole that is TV Tropes. As expected from a review that is the Horned King’s doing. And I started reading this after midnight. Wish me luck.

    Yoiks. I’ve heard Matrix-esque mechanical uprising theories about Cars before, but I think this is the worst. I mean, this would mean that the ugly blemish that tarnishes Pixar’s image and grows cancerously with troubling speed is in fact a sequel to some of the works of Disney that were touched by the hand of Walt himself. *that* is enough to make ones’ mind to ache on’t.

    Wait a minute, if motor oil is dead dinosaurs, wouldn’t that mean that these machines are fuelled by Disney’s big, lumbering flop of an attempt to jump start a spot in the CGI game? That actually makes so much sense. And it also means that the stars of a Democratic-friendly-argument-supporting movie’s processed corpses are being brought through the guts of air-polluting, company-produced, life-destroying machines. Harsh.

    …But not as harsh as the Horned King’s cruelty! That monster! Someone ought to sic Lotso on that bony bastard and have him hug him to death!

  22. I think the reason for Rod Redline’s name is that he is gotten rid of fairly early; to be “redlined” is to be shoved aside/disposed of. So it’s another way of calling him dead meat/inconsequential.

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