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From Worst To Best: Ranking The Pixar Movies

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • June 19, 2013 2:50 PM
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  • 53 Comments
Pixar Feature
This weekend Pixar's latest digital marvel, "Monsters University," roars into theaters (you can read our review here). Few studios can claim the kind of quality that Pixar often does – for a while there it was the most critically and commercially adored studio in the history of cinema (though they are not without their faults). And for good reason. It seemed like year after year they would commit a new classic, an endlessly re-watchable delight full of characters that will be beloved by children the world over for decades to come. In fact, the amount of excellence made ranking the films a blurry and burdensome proposition. But in hindsight (and after a couple of shoddy 3D conversions), it becomes clearer which movies are truly more special than others. This is what we've attempted to do, with our worst-to-best Pixar retrospective.

Watch: Three New 'Cars' Toons; Plus Is A Creepy Robotic Johnny Depp Headed To Another Disney Attraction?

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • March 26, 2013 1:34 PM
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  • 3 Comments
While the "Cars" franchise is seen by film fans as a blight on the mostly peerless Pixar record, a strictly-for-kids giggle-fest that contains little of the emotional nuance or visual invention that defines the studio's best work, it still, for better or worse, remains a perennial cash cow. Between the two feature films, a handful of delightful shorts, the Carsland section of the Disney California Adventure theme park (which will soon be cloned for Florida's Disney's Hollywood Studios), an untold number of toys, several videogames and this summer's abhorrent-looking spin-off "Planes" (which isn't explicitly a Pixar product but was cheekily introduced in a "Cars" short on the "Cars 2" DVD), the "Cars" franchise generates billions of dollars annually for the Walt Disney company.
More: Pixar, Cars 2

John Lasseter Says 'Cars 2' Not About Selling Toys By Making Comparison To Lightning McQueen Luggage

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • October 18, 2011 9:20 AM
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  • 8 Comments
"Cars 2" was misery. Not only was it a pretty lousy movie, but it showed that Pixar, a studio that has had a nearly peerless streak of hit movies that were smart, entertaining and deeply thoughtful, was creatively fallible. At the time of its release, a handful of critics got behind the film but most found it to be loud, excessive, and driven only by the massive merchandising opportunities (since "Cars"-related junk brings in billions of dollars for the Walt Disney Company annually).

In Theaters: 'Shark Night 3D,' or 'A Good Old Fashioned Orgy'?

  • By Katie Walsh
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  • September 2, 2011 7:21 AM
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  • 1 Comment
Feel that morning chill? That's right, it's undoubtedly September, and film fans should be rejoicing. Goodbye and good riddance, August 2011, you were not one of those Augusts that defied the stereotype as the summer dumping ground. In the past few years, auteurs like Edgar Wright ("Scott Pilgrim vs. the World") and Quentin Tarantino ("Inglorious Basterds") boldly ventured into the month of August with varying degrees of success, and many hailed these maneuvers as groundbreaking for August's status. Well... August 2011 promptly set all right again with the dismal releases we've experienced.

D23: Dave Foley Joins 'Monsters University' Voice Cast, 'Brave' & 'Wreck-it-Ralph' Footage Impresses

  • By Jeff Otto
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  • August 21, 2011 3:11 AM
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  • 1 Comment
Disney’s D23 Showing Strong On The Animation SideThis morning Disney rolled out a large slate of announcements as part of its D23 Fan Expo, which the mouse house hopes will develop into their answer to Comic-Con. And considering the Saturday sellout at the Anaheim Convention Center, they might really be onto something. The nearly three-hour presentation was heavy on animation and the presence of Pixar and Disney Animation Studios head John Lasseter.

Weekend Box Office: Boy Wizard Trumps Batman As 'Deathly Hallows Pt. 2' Has All-Time Biggest Opening

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • July 17, 2011 5:19 AM
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  • 8 Comments
And so we have box office history.

Weekend Box Office: 'Cars 2' Continues Pixar Formula, 'Green Lantern' Plummets

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • June 26, 2011 5:27 AM
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  • 8 Comments
The numbers on “Cars 2” don’t actually matter, except for the stat-hounds regularly following the weekly box office noise (us!). “Cars 2” exists to facilitate Disney’s biggest merchandising cash cow, a multi-billion (annually!) property that needs no further justification. As Pixar seems like a studio that hopes to branch out into more ambitious directions (in theory), they will need something to keep the lights on when, and if, they should fail. Even if the reviews continue to be the worst ever received by a Pixar film, the “Cars” franchise will live on.

In Theaters: 'Cars 2' Races 'Bad Teacher' To The Finish Line

  • By Katie Walsh
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  • June 24, 2011 6:59 AM
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  • 0 Comments
The box office arms race of 2011 continues this weekend, as we all recover from the sight of Ryan Reynolds' green CGI suit. This weekend, two contenders enter the ring. In one corner, we have the tried-and-true bread and butter, the consistent money maker, loaded with high end talent and a brand to back it up, not to mention merchandising out the wazoo-- yes, it's Pixar's "Cars 2." And in the other corner, we have the underdog, the newcomer with a loud-ass bark and still questionable bite, the promising but not yet proven genre, the raunchy lady comedy, "Bad Teacher." Two will enter, and one will exit with its tail between its legs, the shattered dreams of unproduced scripts fluttering sadly about its ankles. No pressure or anything, Cammie!

Review: 'Cars 2' Features All New Parts, But With Less Than Pleasing Results

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • June 21, 2011 2:01 AM
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  • 3 Comments
Brightly colored, heartwarming, and making expansive narrative sweeps with an incredibly limited running time, it's the kind of bold, splashily produced film that has rarely graced multiplex screens this summer. But its biggest accomplishment might be that it reunites us with old friends (some of them more familiar than others); the cinematic equivalent of a warm, cathartic (but never saccharine or overtly sentimental) hug.

First Poster & Clip Arrive For Latest Pixar Short 'La Luna'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • June 10, 2011 3:30 AM
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  • 0 Comments
We're be decidedly un-enamored of Pixar's recent approach to their features: this year's "Cars 2" looks, if anything, worse than its predecessor, and being jammed between last year's "Toy Story 3" and 2013's "Monsters University," the studio, one of the true bastions of creativity in the industry, seems to be heading towards the sequel-happy approach of every other big company, with next year's "Brave" being the only confirmed original project on their slate (although we've got no doubt that there are plenty of other films in the works), and big name directors like Andrew Stanton and Brad Bird being wooed away to the live-action world for films like "John Carter" and "Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol."

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