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NEWS
May 28, 2009 | By GARY THOMPSON, thompsg@phillynews.com
The intersection of creativity and commerce is a dangerous place, littered with the twisted wreckage and severed limbs of failed studios and wounded artists. It's also a place where Pixar lives a charmed and comfy life, creating movies that make billions, copping Oscars and winning over the toughest of crowds. Case in point: Pixar's "Up" made a boffo opening night debut at the Cannes Film Festival, moving an audience of notoriously hard-to-please, Hollywood-hating cinephiles to stand and applaud.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 29, 2009 | By Carrie Rickey INQUIRER MOVIE CRITIC
Things are looking Up. The buoyant Pixar escapade soars, and our hearts along with it. An optimistic tale about a pessimistic septuagenarian, this lovely film darts unpredictably between comedy and adventure, defying gravity and age. How much do I love this movie? If it were mathematically possible, I'd give it five stars out of four. As whimsical as it is fantastic, Up suggests that age is no impediment to daring, nor youth to maturity. It's been a long time since a movie has touched me so deeply while lifting me so high.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 9, 2006 | By Steven Rea INQUIRER MOVIE CRITIC
It was bound to happen. After a spectacular 11-year run that produced a fleet of instant family classics (Toy Story 1 and 2, The Incredibles, Finding Nemo, Monsters, Inc.), Pixar finally rolled out a clunker. Although Cars is directed by John Lasseter, the creative force behind the computer animation studio - a studio with innovations and artistry recognized last year with an exhibit at New York's Museum of Modern Art - this feels more like an assembly-line kiddie flick than anything else.
NEWS
June 19, 2015
THOUGH PIXAR is the closest thing in the movie business to a can't-miss studio, there has been grumbling recently that the company's been playing it safe. Pixar spent the first decade of the new century releasing completely original titles, seven in all, then started living off the dividends of sequels - "Toy Story 3," "Cars 2," "Monsters University. " Nit-pickers wondered: Had the company lost its nerve? If so, they've gone to the right fellow to get it back - Pete Docter, the animator who helmed "Up," the movie that concluded and perhaps capped its great 2000-09 run. No one can say Docter is playing it safe with "Inside Out," a boldly imagined animated feature that goes inside the brain of a sad, struggling girl, and breaks her emotions down into individual characters - Joy, Anger, Fear, Disgust, Sadness - all trying to manage the girl's mood.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 29, 2009 | By Carrie Rickey, Inquirer Movie Critic
Things are looking Up . The buoyant Pixar escapade soars, and our hearts along with it. An optimistic tale about a pessimistic septuagenarian, this lovely film darts unpredictably between comedy and adventure, defying gravity and age. How much do I love this movie? If it were mathematically possible, I'd give it five stars out of four. As whimsical as it is fantastic, Up suggests that age is no impediment to daring, nor youth to maturity. It's been a long time since a movie has touched me so deeply while lifting me so high.
NEWS
June 8, 2015 | By Steven Rea, Inquirer Columnist
In Inside Out , which opens June 19 and debuted at the Cannes Film Festival in May to rapturous crowds and kudos, the emotions of an 11-year-old girl are brought to life Pixar-style. Joy (the voice of Amy Poehler) is a sparkling, google-eyed pixie. Sadness ( The Office's Phyllis Smith) is a roly-poly blob of blue, sporting big round glasses and a look of helpless woe. Anger (the ranting, raging Lewis Black) is squat and red and blows flames out of his head. Disgust (Mindy Kaling)
ENTERTAINMENT
June 18, 2010 | By GARY THOMPSON, thompsg@phillynews.com 215-854-5992
"Toy Story 3" continues Pixar's unique tradition of sending grown men out of the theater pretending they're not crying. Pixar is the only big-time animator that routinely tells stories about melancholy and loss, and "TS3" (3-D) has those elements - likely to inspire misty yearnings for lost youth, lost toys or a lost culture that encouraged children to play with toys rather than electronics. Yet there is also something a little un-Pixarlike about "TS3" 3-D, starting with the recurring number "three.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 11, 2011 | By Steven Rea, Inquirer Movie Critic
It's a sorry spectacle, watching garden gnomes being robbed of their dignity. This diminutive legion, many in dapper beards and pointy hats, can be found in just about every corner of the world, lolling on well-tended lawns, propping up wheelbarrows amid flowers and shrubs. And they can be found, too, in Gnomeo & Juliet , a computer-animated iteration of Shakespeare's tragic romance in which a boy and a girl from warring clans fall in love, only to discover that old quarrels can have daunting, and sometimes dire, results.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 10, 2006 | By Rob Watson INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Even Disney couldn't get the masses out to see Japanese animation deity Hayao Miyazaki's Howl's Moving Castle last summer. The 2004 theatrical release in Japan grossed more than $210 million, but Americans dissed this Pixar-translated gem, which logged just under $5 million in receipts. Heads should be bowed in shame. The HMC DVD release gives folks a second chance to see this amazing film. I suggest purchasing; renting a film like this is like merely renting The Godfather or Apocalypse Now. Miyazaki (Princess Mononoke, Spirited Away)
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ENTERTAINMENT
June 23, 2015 | By Howard Gensler
IT MAY NOT be archeologically accurate to say this, but dinosaurs still rule the Earth. With $102 million, "Jurassic World" kept the No. 1 spot with one of the biggest second weeks ever, while "Inside Out" nearly matched it with a $91.1 million debut, well above expectations. "Jurassic World" became only the second release to break $100 million in its second week. "The Avengers" took in $103.1 million in its second week. "Inside Out" became the first Pixar release not to open in first place, following 14 straight No. 1s, but it's the largest opening for a wholly original movie (one not based on source material or a sequel)
NEWS
June 19, 2015
THOUGH PIXAR is the closest thing in the movie business to a can't-miss studio, there has been grumbling recently that the company's been playing it safe. Pixar spent the first decade of the new century releasing completely original titles, seven in all, then started living off the dividends of sequels - "Toy Story 3," "Cars 2," "Monsters University. " Nit-pickers wondered: Had the company lost its nerve? If so, they've gone to the right fellow to get it back - Pete Docter, the animator who helmed "Up," the movie that concluded and perhaps capped its great 2000-09 run. No one can say Docter is playing it safe with "Inside Out," a boldly imagined animated feature that goes inside the brain of a sad, struggling girl, and breaks her emotions down into individual characters - Joy, Anger, Fear, Disgust, Sadness - all trying to manage the girl's mood.
NEWS
June 19, 2015 | BY STEVEN REA, Inquirer Staff Writer srea@phillynews.com, 215-854-5629
"INSIDE OUT" is the first psychological thriller that's fun for the whole family. Really psychological. And really fun. The central characters in Pixar's crazy-inventive animated adventure aren't talking toys, or cars or monsters. They're emotions: Joy, Fear, Anger, Disgust and Sadness, all jockeying for control in the "headquarters" of a pre-teen girl. That is, from the control room in her head. Connected to HQ is a vast mindscape: a long-term memory area, "personality islands" built on core experiences, Imagination Land, and sectors dedicated to abstract thinking and the subconscious (it's spooky there)
NEWS
June 8, 2015 | By Steven Rea, Inquirer Columnist
In Inside Out , which opens June 19 and debuted at the Cannes Film Festival in May to rapturous crowds and kudos, the emotions of an 11-year-old girl are brought to life Pixar-style. Joy (the voice of Amy Poehler) is a sparkling, google-eyed pixie. Sadness ( The Office's Phyllis Smith) is a roly-poly blob of blue, sporting big round glasses and a look of helpless woe. Anger (the ranting, raging Lewis Black) is squat and red and blows flames out of his head. Disgust (Mindy Kaling)
ENTERTAINMENT
March 4, 2015
THE GENTLEMEN stationed at the Disney princess tribute at the Philadelphia Flower Show were doing their best to be patient with me. Not only did I not know the names of any of the flowers ("Is that an orchid?"), I often could not decode the most basic design clues. To my shame, since I'm the movie critic, and I was dispatched to evaluate the flower show on that basis. I was stymied, for instance, by the meaning of artfully constructed bunches of red carnations, until State College florist and designer Daniel Vaughn gave me a tactful prompt.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 30, 2014 | By Peter Dobrin, Inquirer Music Critic
It used to be we would go to the orchestra to avoid commercialism. Now, audiences are paying good money to be pitched to. Playing excerpts from the scores of Pixar films on two nights in Verizon Hall last week, the Philadelphia Orchestra set aside its charge of letting the public in on something interesting, overlooked, or artistically important. Instead, the ensemble played for two hours beneath a screen showing clips from Toy Story ( 1 , 2 and 3 ), Monsters Inc ., Cars ( 1 and 2 )
ENTERTAINMENT
December 6, 2012 | By Howard Gensler
IT'S THE MOST WONDERFUL time of the year - when Barbara Walters announces her annual list of the year's most fascinating people and Tattle asks whether the definition of "fascinating" has changed since we were young. Honey Boo Boo ? Fascinating? Come on. Walters spoke with Us Weekly about why she included 7-year-old Honey (a/k/a Alana Thompson ) on her 2012 list - and she doesn't think it was a Boo Boo. "It's a love story," Walters told Us of the bond between Alana and her mother, June Shannon.
NEWS
November 2, 2012 | BY GARY THOMPSON, Daily News Staff Writer
"WRECK-IT Ralph" is a cheerful little Disney 'toon that invokes two of the company's most popular properties: "Toy Story" and "Tron. " Set in an old-fashioned arcade, its Secret Lives of Video Game Characters story begins inside a game where kids help Fix It Felix (voice of Jack McBrayer) repair the damage caused by the hulking Wreck-It Ralph (John C. Reilly). The old-school game is corny, but also one of the most popular in the arcade. As the movie opens, it's celebrating a venerable anniversary, and the game characters gather after hours to pay homage to Felix.
NEWS
October 9, 2011 | By Karen Heller, Inquirer Columnist
Few of us make a ripple in the grand river of time. We may leave descendants, some possessions passed along to subsequent generations. Steve Jobs, who died Wednesday at age 56, was not that sort of person. What he did, who he was, changed our lives, altering the landscape of technology, communication, and entertainment. He was the bend in the river. He imagined our future through brilliant marketing, making progress tangible and tactile. "You can't connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards.
NEWS
October 7, 2011 | By Jeff Gelles, Inquirer Staff Writer
"Have the courage to follow your heart and intuition," Steve Jobs told Stanford University graduates in 2005, after his diagnosis with the pancreatic cancer that finally killed him Wednesday at 56. That snippet of advice might have been boilerplate from almost anyone else. But it sums up the life and contributions of a man whose vision altered the course of computing at the close of the 20th century and revolutionized personal technology at the dawn of the 21st. Jobs cofounded Apple Computer Inc. in 1976 and was the visionary behind the Macintosh personal computer, introduced during 1984's Super Bowl with an anti-Orwellian commercial whose tag line read, "And you'll see why 1984 won't be like '1984.' " Even after leaving Apple the next year during a power struggle, Jobs continued to push the envelope of technology as the driving force behind the powerful NeXT workstation computer and Pixar's Toy Story, the first full-length movie created entirely with digital animation.
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