Critics Consensus: Cars 2 is Stuck in Neutral

Summary

This week at the movies, we've got animated autos (Cars 2, with voice work from Owen Wilson and Larry the Cable Guy) and execrable educators (Bad Teacher, starring Cameron Diaz and Justin Timberlake). What do the critics have to say? Pixar's output has been so good for so long that it seemed unfathomable that one of the studio's films would get a less-than-rapturous response from critics. Well, all good things must come to an end, and that now includes Pixar's streak of Certified Fresh releases; critics say Cars 2 looks fantastic, but the studio's trademark storytelling prowess and character development is MIA here, and the result is a decent animated feature that must count as a big disappointment, given the standards that Pixar has set for itself. Back to Article

Comments

Lenny M.

Lenny Monroe

LMAO I thought the same thing. I honestly felt it was a way of cheating in The Prestige

Jun 23 - 06:30 PM

Manuel G.

Manuel Granados

It was all "uhhh how do we explain this trick after we used the twins on the other guy? would it be cheap to say Wolverine had a twin?" "Yeah..." "how about clones? people like clones" "Let's do that!"

Jun 23 - 06:35 PM

misterkyle1901

kyle T

I think you might have misinterpreted the ending... the point was that he had to kill himself repeatedly... and that, spoiler alert, it meant nothing to him to frame Bale's character because every time he did the trick he had to kill the "man in the machine." And I personally think the Prestige is Nolan's best movie (I know I'm alone on this) but the second half of the movie you have to know that somewhere there was a pile of Hugh Jackman bodies... Usually the part that annoys people is that Bale's character had a twin.

Jun 23 - 10:08 PM

Bigbrother

Big Brother

I'm with Lenny and Manny G on this one. The ending of The Prestige was simultaneously overthought and obvious. Movie should have ended 30 minutes before it did when everybody had figured out the ending, that 30 minutes existed only for people to waste 30 minutes going "he can't be going to end it this way is he?"

Jun 24 - 05:29 AM

TombstoneLawDog

Daniel Klein

Bigbrother-

I actually remember thinking "He's not going to have the *balls* to end it this way, is he? _killing_ every other clone?" I honestly thought he might puss out and just have a community of Jackmans living in exile.

I liked the Prestige, though it suffers from the same heavy-handedness that all of Nolan's pictures do. There is nothing light and airy about any of his movies. To be sure, there are moments of levity, but they are couched in context of such gravity and (usually) melancholy that I need to prepare myself when I'm planning on watching his movies more than once. --Keep in mind, I am a very big fan of his, over-all.

Jun 24 - 07:58 AM

misterkyle1901

kyle T

Tombstone: I agree that Nolan's movies are a bit heavy handed... there is little time for light conversation and the characters all have personalities that have developed out of necessity (I mean, under the circumstances of the film). Generally, his films become like elongated montages. But... that being said, he is British and Brits are quite fascinated by classical storytelling (and just look at Branagh's movies as well). I will be honest, Nolan does have a bit of maturing to do and his scripts are cluttered with substance (he seems to create scenarios where a lot of events MUST occur and a lot of characters MUST exist, and he feels he must touch on all of them).

Jun 24 - 04:45 PM

waggaga1

noel noel

I'm sad as fuck.

Jun 23 - 06:30 PM

Rebeccachu Elizabeth C.

Rebecca Clark

I am sad also.

Pixar's Winning Streak is finally destoyed...and Hal Jordan is in the Hospital from all the trolling the critics gave him and the fact that his live-action movie flopped at the box office! D':

Aug 4 - 06:40 PM

Mr. Dufresne

Chip McNair

Agreed, I actually thought it would get the same rating or slightly higher than the first one.

Jun 23 - 06:31 PM

Mr. Dufresne

Chip McNair

Well, I can honestly say that if a Pixar movie had to get a rotten, I'm glad it was Cars 2 instead of Toy Story 3. That being said, it is disappointing. However, I'll admit this actually makes me more anxious to check out the film, to see if it really is that bad. I'm not saying critics are wrong, but I'll bet that they really are stacking this up next to Toy Story 3 and other Pixar films, and being harsher on it as a result, though it probably is just average.

Jun 23 - 06:35 PM

August M.

Agustin Macias

Well since there's a Toy Story short in front of Cars 2, it will be hard not to compare it.

Jun 23 - 08:37 PM

Mr. Dufresne

Chip McNair

Yeah, I didn't think of it that way. I bet the Toy Story short is the best part of the movie.

Jun 23 - 10:52 PM

King Crunk

King Crunk

If you read most of the review blurbs, most critics have said that the movie is just decent, not really bad. But decent is not good enough when you have set a standard of excellence like they have.

Jun 24 - 02:29 AM

CoreyG

Corey Gallagher

Critics aren't supposed to have separate criteria for different studios and groups, it's annoying that many critics reviewed this film in comparison to Pixar's entire collective of work rather than on it's own merits. If critics could place that bias aside I do still think Cars 2 would have been rotten or received a fairly low grade, but it wouldn't be sitting this low.

Jun 24 - 03:20 AM

Mr. Dufresne

Chip McNair

Maybe not, but when a company preaches and produces such high quality entertainment, when a certain film falls short of that, it just isn't good enough because the audience's standards are so high. Personally, I'm kind of glad Cars 2 is getting bad reviews. I'm positive that it was a cash-in, so maybe it help keep Pixar humble, because I bet those guys care more abotu quality than anything..

Jun 24 - 05:28 AM

King Crunk

King Crunk

Like it or not man, reputation is always there, and Pixar has a great one, so when they make a film that does not live up to that reputation, people are going to hold it against them.

Jun 24 - 07:44 AM

CoreyG

Corey Gallagher

I don't like it, but I've already accepted it.

Jun 24 - 10:57 AM

Manuel G.

Manuel Granados

It was all "uhhh how do we explain this trick after we used the twins on the other guy? would it be cheap to say Wolverine had a twin?" "Yeah..." "how about clones? people like clones" "Let's do that!"

Jun 23 - 06:35 PM

Bloody Mathias

Mathias N/A

Pixar's first rotten score, wow. I was sure they made this sequel to quiet all the haters of the original but i guess i was wrong. Maybe Pixar's hawaii-shirt-lovin' big boss let the merchandizing get the better of him.

Sad day for animation fans. :(

Jun 23 - 07:01 PM

The.Watcher

The Watcher

I'm sorry Eric, I didn't mean it :) I care deeply, now, tell me WHY you liked Cars.

Jun 23 - 07:02 PM

Jagooly J.

Jagooly J

Oh look at me I am the watcher and Im so cool I pick on people for there spelling mistakes!!! By the way the watcher movie sucked with Keaniu Reeve!!! And u suck 2!!!

Jun 24 - 10:16 AM

The.Watcher

The Watcher

Wow... you're an idiot! Do you have *any* idea how stupid you are making yourself look? I'm not even saying this with ill intentions, I'm trying to help you by telling you that you're making yourself look stupid. Stop it. PS - The.Watcher is not a reference to the Keanu Reeves movie, idiot, it's a reference to Buffy the Vampire Slayer. It was Gile's profession. Idiot smh....

Jun 24 - 12:26 PM

Eric M.

Eric McInnis

Well to me personally, it had great animation, voice talents, and a good message. It also had some funny moments. Not hilarious, but funny. Lastly, it had a good story. Plus, I was 9 when I saw it, so it was very nostalgic. It is not my favorite Pixar, but that doesn't mean it's bad.

Jun 24 - 12:56 PM

The.Watcher

The Watcher

So...you're 14 now? Well, you're pretty much the target audience for Cars and its sequel, anyway.

Jun 24 - 03:12 PM

Brad H.

Brad Hadfield

How can you have nostalgia for your childhood when you're still a child? Give it another 10 or 20 years, and THEN get nostalgic over your Cars memories. ;)

Jun 24 - 04:32 PM

movieBETO

alberto salazar

Sad to see pixar rotten, not surprised since cars was not as good as the other pixar films. I enjoyed the film but didnt love it like I did the others. While a good film it was probably my least favorite one of the bunch. I had a feeling this would happen.

Jun 23 - 07:02 PM

dj Mark

Mark Marquis

The Adventures of Tin Tin if it's any good?

Jun 23 - 07:18 PM

General Wiz

Carlos Flores

Like I said, apparently the academy won't count it as a animated feature.

Jun 23 - 07:43 PM

Sean Y.

Sean Y.

Well, all indications point more towards it being good. I realize none of this guarantees anything, but they are pretty strong positive indications.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Producer: Peter Jackson
Music Score: John Williams (well, this guarantees a good music score)
CGI: Weta Digital, responsible for the visual effects of such movies as the LOTR trilogy and Avatar

That has me pretty convinced it's going to be good.

Jun 23 - 08:49 PM

Noah James

Noah Kinsey

Actually - judging by White's pattern - he will write a glowing review. If a movie is Rotten, he usually loves it; if it's Fresh, he usually hates it. See Toy Story 3 and Jonah Hex as examples. If anything, his review for Cars 2 would logically start out with "FINALLY a Pixar movie that's good!!"

Jun 23 - 07:22 PM

Jaxx Raxor

Adam Jones

Hah Armond's review is going to be a hoot to read :D

Jun 23 - 08:11 PM

Will B

Will Boissonnault

Those are just 2 examples. He actually agrees with everyone else 52% of the time, according to RT.

Jun 24 - 04:53 AM

Noah James

Noah Kinsey

He agrees with people 52% ?! You really thought it was needed by proving me wrong with 3% ?

Jun 24 - 09:24 AM

dj Mark

Mark Marquis

Rotten reviews aren't going to keep Cars 2 from making a boatload of cash. I'm sure Pixar's stockholders will be thrilled. I hope the creative team feels differently.

Jun 23 - 07:36 PM

Noah James

Noah Kinsey

Cars 2 has already been a huge commercial success for everyone involved even before it came out. I would imagine that John the CEO is patting himself on the back while John the artist is shaking his head.

Jun 23 - 07:44 PM

Gordon Franklin Terry Sr

Gordon Terry

nothing can derail Pixar . . . CARS 3 will be 300 times better.

Jun 24 - 07:09 AM

Noah James

Noah Kinsey

Hush your mouth about a Cars 3. Don't give them ideas!

Jun 24 - 09:32 AM

General Wiz

Carlos Flores

Like I said, apparently the academy won't count it as a animated feature.

Jun 23 - 07:43 PM

Noah James

Noah Kinsey

Cars 2 has already been a huge commercial success for everyone involved even before it came out. I would imagine that John the CEO is patting himself on the back while John the artist is shaking his head.

Jun 23 - 07:44 PM

Gordon Franklin Terry Sr

Gordon Terry

nothing can derail Pixar . . . CARS 3 will be 300 times better.

Jun 24 - 07:09 AM

Noah James

Noah Kinsey

Hush your mouth about a Cars 3. Don't give them ideas!

Jun 24 - 09:32 AM

Noah James

Noah Kinsey

Has anyone watched the previews for Bad Teacher and think that this is just the sequel/reboot/revision/retelling of the main character from Bad Santa?

Jun 23 - 07:45 PM

Jaxx Raxor

Adam Jones

@Noah James

There definitely seems to be some similarities between Bad Santa and Bad Teacher. I think that to see the normally nice (pushing 40 but still really sexy) Cameron Diaz play a really nasty character is quite appealing to me. According to the reviews, her character, (unlike Billy Bob Thorton's character in Bad Santa) has no redeeming qualities (except her physical appearance...) and that is helping to fuel some of the negative reviews. So yes there are some similarities but to say its likes a sequel/reboot/revision seems a little too much.

Jun 23 - 08:10 PM

Noah James

Noah Kinsey

I meant more of the FEEL of it. The TONE of the trailer, if you will. Not the plot.

Jun 23 - 09:16 PM

Jaxx Raxor

Adam Jones

Going strictly by the trailers and not reviews, Bad Teacher seems to be much nastier and darker than Bad Santa's trailers.

Jun 24 - 06:34 AM

Bigbrother

Big Brother

Unfortunately Jaxx from what I hear the chief complaint is it doesn't live up to the trailers promise. People thought it should have been more inflammatory.

Jun 24 - 09:58 AM

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