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Monsters, Inc.

A Pixar movie directed by Peter Docter

< read all 8 reviews

A modern classic not to be missed.

  • Nov 1, 2001
Pros: Great FX and funny.

Cons: None

The Bottom Line: A fun adventure from the folks that brought you the "Toy Story" series. This is not to be missed.

Plot Details: This opinion reveals minor details about the movie's plot.

The ritual of putting children to bed has been something that parents and adults have had to deal with since the start of time. Who can ever forget the requests for a glass of water, a nightlight, or a story that children have issued for ages. In a way it is almost a ritual as once the checklist has been completed, then the children can go to sleep safe and sound.
Ah, but what of the old nemesis of children, the fabled monster under the bed or in the closet. The fear of the unknown where shadows take on sinister forms and play on the minds of young children is a powerful tool. Normally, a quick check of the closet, bed, and the use of a nightlight take care of this problem, and as the years pass, the notion of monsters in the closet fades in a young persons mind.
For a notion to remain after so many centuries and for it to cross so many cultural barriers there must be some basis to this legend. Sure some of it can be blamed on fear of the unknown and an overactive imagination fueled by television and video games, but there must be something more.
Thankfully, the creative team behind such classics as “Toy Story” “Toy Story 2” and “A Bugs Life” are up to the task and in the new film “Monsters Inc.” viewers get a look into that secret world where things go bump in the night.
According to the folks at Pixar, it seems that monsters have been coming from children’s closets for ages and will continue to do so as their very survival depends on it. In the world of the monsters, it is necessary to harness the screams of children in order to power their cities. Since children are becoming harder and harder to scare in modern times, the monsters are faced with a severe power crisis.
The monsters main source of energy is Monsters Inc. A factory that creates power from children’s screams. Transporting monsters through a doorway in the factory that lets them enter our world through a child’s closet and return to their world in no time at all.
The top scarer at Monsters Inc is James P Sullivan or Sulley( John Goodman), as he is known. Sulley that despite his 8ft height and his blue and purple fur is a gentle giant that takes pride in his work as the top scarer at the company. Sulley’s best friend and roommate is a small, one eyed, green ball of a monster named Mike Wazowski Billy Crystal, a loyal and devoted friend, who assists Sulley by bringing him new doors and processing the tanks of screams that he collects. Mike is also very proud of Sulley’s scare record and his ongoing relationship with Celia(Jennifer Tilly).
Despite the urgent need for power and the concerns that are uttered by the head of the factory, Waternoose, (James Coburn), and the sneaky dealings of the #2 scarer Randall (Steve Buscemi) things could not be better for Mike and Sulley.
Things take a turn for the unexpected when a little girl the two call “Boo” arrives through the doorway. This is a huge crisis for the monsters as they believe children to be toxic and their touch deadly. A special decontamination unit is always on hand to eliminate any trace of a child’s presence be it a sock, toy, or crayon, and cleanse any monster affected by contact.
What follows is a funny serious of events where Mike and Sulley attempt to hide Boo and get her home all the while dealing with the politics at work, their social life, and the scheming Randall as their world has been tuned upside down by the little girl they are quickly becoming fond of.
The animation of the film is top notch as the computer-generated images bring the characters to life and show a wide range of emotions from their facial features and body language. The voice acting is top notch and the laughs are genuine. The story moved along at a brisk pace as was funny without being forced. I would highly suggest this film to anyone and lets hope that we get to take a return trip to the land of Mike and Sulley in the not do distant future.

4.5 stars out of 5
Gareth Von Kallenbach


Suitability For Children: Suitable for Children up to Age 4

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More Monsters, Inc. reviews
Quick Tip by . June 11, 2010
A favorite growing up! So excited they're making a sequel! (Fingers crossed, hope it's good!)
review by . July 23, 2009
I recently re-watched this film (the last time having been when it was int he theaters), and found it just as entertaining to both myself and my child movie-watching companion.    THEN: I went to the theater with two young (6 and 3) boys, who were enthralled throughout. The younger boy demanded a Boo doll for Hanukkah.    NOW: Watched it at home with my 3 year-old niece whose attention did not waver (and that's a trick) throughout the whole movie. She was …
review by . June 21, 2007
posted in Movie Hype
Some of the best stories for children have presented their worst fears only to have the menace brought down to size. "Jack and the Beanstalk" works that way perfectly. 'Monsters, Inc.' helps to tuck the kiddies in and give them the giggles, too. Taking near day-glow colors, the Monsters in this fluid Pixar picture are hideously cute. They live in a "green" world where the renewable resource of children's fright powers the Monster community. Looking like the sorts in (Lucas Films, Ltd. is credited …
review by . December 16, 2005
Since the very first bedtime, children around the world have known that after their parents turn off the lights, monsters lay waiting behind closet doors, ready to emerge. But what they didn't know is that the monsters are as scared of us as we are of them! By watching Monsters, Inc. you get the whole story and a new light what goes on behind those closed doors. Monsters, Inc. is a superb movie, filled with all the great characters, comedy, and CGA that the movie-going audience has come to expect …
review by . February 02, 2004
"Monsters, Inc." is a funny addition to anyone's Pixar library. It's funnier than "A Bug's Life" and has a storyline that holds up better than "Toy Story." Sully and Mike are a great duo in this tale and it's fun to watch them interact with each other and Boo. The opening sequence in the test "Scare" room is funny, and the following sequence at Sully's house is hilarious. Steve Buscemi is a standout as Randall, the conniving culprit of the movie. He's devilishly funny and Mr. Waternoose isn't so …
review by . February 09, 2003
If you have small children, movies such as this are worth their weight in gold: the kids love it (our two year old can barely start the day without at least seeing scare trainee Mr. Vile whose friends call him "Phlegm" and his ill-fated run through the bedroom simulation), and since the kids love it, you'd better get used to the idea of YOU watching it OVER AND OVER AGAIN.   And here Monsters, Inc. (along with the Toy Story movies and the outstanding Shrek) really shows its mettle: even …
About the reviewer
Gareth Von Kallenbach ()
Ranked #37
I am a syndicated movie & game critic, writer, author and frequent radio guest. My work has appeared in over 60 publications worldwide and he is the creator of the rising entertainment site "Skewed … more
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About this movie


Intelligent, funny, adorable, and beautifully animated, MONSTERS, INC. will delight fans of SHREK and TOY STORY, while drawing a new audience of curious, kid-friendly viewers. Billy Crystal and John Goodman make a fiercely funny comedic team as job partners and best friends, Mike (Crystal)--a little green guy with one huge eyeball, and Sulley (Goodman)--a big purple and blue fuzzy guy with dinosaur spikes down his back. Mike and Sully work at MONSTERS, INC., a gigantic corporation that captures the screams of little children and turns them into energy. To make the children scream, the monsters must enter each child's bedroom through the closet door, then deliver a frightening affront. The only problem is, kids aren't scared anymore. And because of this problem, Monsters, Inc. is in a jam. But when one little girl, Boo (Mary Gibbs), follows Sully through her closet door and into the factory, she brings an even more dire issue to the fore: the monsters are actually terrified of children. From Pixar Animati...
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Genre: Comedy
Release Date: 2001, November 2, 2001
MPAA Rating: G
Screen Writer: Andrew Stanton, Daniel Gerson
DVD Release Date: September 17, 2002
Runtime: 93 minutes
Studio: Pixar Animation Studios, Walt Disney Studios
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