dir. ANDREW STANTON USA | 2008 98 mins
In the beginning of space colonisation there was garbage. Ecological propaganda tells in a playful way an ancient story of love between robot and robot. No gender stereotypes in this one...
In the case of the film Wall-E the postapocalyptic theme gets an animated approach. Just like in a very old game, Civilization, the human species uses its technical inventions to leave, leave the trash-covered planet Earth just in time, but plan to return only when it is cleaned back to normal. What's more, the ecological exodus is executed in a highly consumerised style which we can see from the evolution-like chain of portraits of spaceship captains.
The absence of humanity on the Planet Earth leaves room for a little mechanical romance. Animated hydraulic presser WALL-E (Waste Allocation Load Lifter Earth-Class), the last of its kind, continues its duty – which is, through mathematically defined algorithms, to clear the planet of garbage. Because of long time loneliness and the necessity of adjusting to the hard conditions of the surroundings, our machine develops a problem which we could call an error in the program. Not only does he not clear all the garbage and some objects that he saves for his private collection, but we can very clearly spot human behaviour in his actions – his passion is watching old film musicals and based on these films he attempts to imitate human actions and emotional patterns.
The film is based mainly on nonverbal communication and the text refers indirectly to silent movie poetics. The robots fit the sci-fi genre; they are presented as mechanical servants for humans (except a few, every robot is mute – e.g. not so developed) and their instrumental specifications enable the degeneration of the human kind living on rescueship Axiom.
The totalitarian-like state of perfectness of the way of living is slightly damaged from two perspectives. There is a group of robots whose malfunctioning introduces chaos to an otherwise perfectly working system (the cliché of sci-fi stories with an element of alienation from the „normal" is here used for comedy purposes). On the other hand, in the case of the autopilot – the central computer of the spaceship, the alienation is triggered by precisely following orders. The Catch-22 principle is still alive because the most dangerous thing for a human is not extravagance but the passion for reaching normality, reaching the state of perfect harmony.
But life can be spotted only where there is movement.
Creative vice-president of Pixar studio Andrew Stanton has actively participated in most of the studio´s projects since 1990 (mainly as a screenwriter and executive producer). His debut, Finding Nemo, earned him the Oscar for Best animated film.