I really hate the Academy for not giving Toy Story 3 the Academy Award for Best Picture. WALL-E, Up, Toy Story 3 were sort of like this epic trilogy of Disney-Pixar films distributed in consecutive years that made them pretty much undisputed winners of the Pixar award, (outside of Wes Anderson's Fantastic Mr. Fox.) Toy Story 3 was a good end to both trilogies. The end or a decade.
First, the good ideas:
The film immerses us in the world of Monsters University: In Monsters Inc, we were immersed into a small town idealized perception of the Corporation. Sure, their boss whose name is non-pronounciable is a bit of a stereotypical Lex Luthor-ish corporate boss who just becomes evil for no reason
There is a universe of monster scaring explored better than in a Harry Potter film (Possibly because of Disneyfication of animation science)
- The fang sizes.
- The types of scares that Sully did not coach in Monsters Inc.
- Scaring being a competition. Scaring being a sport, even more so than an employee of the month record.
It got us into being a child looking for a dream job through education and college, being in between.
Instead of Boo, being Mike and Sully's Andy, Mike is the Andy, the child of the film growing up, especially in Toy Story 3.
Randall is given a very interesting background, not always being an antagonist.
Mike not being scary is a bit of a dark reality that could have been explored better.
That was a great ending, when Mike showed how he is able to scare adults opposed to children. Way better than the Oren Peli stuff that we've been seeing forever.
Second, the bad execution:
Some of the world is just outdated and not fun and still comes off as appeasing to bullies. Disney is not supposed to be a controversial type of film company. It lacked originality. It lacked intelligence. It lacked the dreams of the Disney world. Although it was not as terrible as my brother and I thought it was going to be, it seemed to be more like a Cars film than a Monsters Inc film at those points.
I understand you want to make it a little darker, but this is not a Disney film, where you can deal with political and religious misunderstandings. Maybe Sully does not want to listen in lectures, because the professors are underpaid and do not want to teach well or are teachers assistants doing it for free tuition.
What is wrong with being a salesperson? Some may a ton of money. Not everybody wants to or can be a sports star, but salesmanship is good old blue collar work.
Mike can obviously become a professor of Monsters University with his talent in book learning. He is obvious ph.D material.
The face-heel turn: Why did Sullivan turn good? Was it because he saw life through Mike's eyes? Why did Randall turn bad?
In other words, although this film does recognize that college is not everything for the coming of age child-adult, this film fails both as a Disney film and as a Palm'e D'orish film about the human condition.
Overall, this film explores very interesting ideas, but due to bad execution can only be recommended for a one time rental for hardcore Monsters Inc/Pixar fans.