Robots in Love

I doubt that I will have time to get into a theater very often for the next month or so–summer vacation is an oxymoron when you’re working on deadline–but if anything can drive me back into theaters, it is the right-wing apoplexy over a little Pixar movie called WALL-E. Apparently a film whose primary purpose is to engender any number of commercial tie-ins is, in fact, a piece of anti-consumerist propaganda lecturing the public on the evils of environmental degradation and other forms of liberal “non-sense.” Oh, and it’s filled with “Malthusian fear-mongering, too.” I might just have to get out to theaters so that I can receive my regular dose of political indoctrination.

You’d almost think that the conservative blogosphere was in the pay of Pixar to get liberals into theaters. Their complaints seem to be working. WALL-E has only made $72 million since opening on Friday.

Update: Then again, maybe there is something to this whole WALL-E as leftist conspiracy argument. From the folks at Brave New Films, a great videoblog that uncovers WALL-E’s Wal-Mart conspiracy. While I’m mentioning Brave New Films, I’ll throw up a pointer to the news that the New York Times had a nice article about their “Real John McCain” videos, which continue to find a wider online audience than McCain’s own campaign videos. The videos’ use of juxtaposition, a technique that Greenwald has used effectively for some time now, is especially successful at calling into question McCain’s reputation as a straight-talking maverick.

Update 2: Just wanted to point to this really interesting read of WALL-E from Steph at Reflexivity.  Steph also points to Frank Rich’s NYT editorial touting WALL-E for president, which is a really good read, in which Rich puts into perspective the fact that a children’s cartoon is talking about our planet’s problems in a way that is far more serious than virtually anyone on cable news or even the two presidential campaigns themselves.


  1. Really Mad Professor Said,

    July 3, 2008 @ 10:48 am

    These are the same kind of people who’d have called Chaplin’s “City Lights” a communist conspiracy.

  2. Chuck Said,

    July 3, 2008 @ 11:06 am

    In fact they did call Charlie Chaplin a communist. I guess we can expect the Pixar hearings to start revving up any time now.

    Seriously Commie-phobia is starting to pick up again, with the thoroughly debunked but oft repeated rumor that China is drilling for oil off the coast of Cuba.

  3. Really Mad Professor Said,

    July 3, 2008 @ 1:13 pm

    Yes–what bothers me is the moronic fiction that pro-corporate, pro-green-house gas, proliferators can actually represent their extremely interested position as agenda-free while a fairly innocent and humane movie that warns us to “be good to each other and the planet” is somehow pernicious. What would Carlin say?

  4. Chuck Said,

    July 3, 2008 @ 1:26 pm

    Yeah, I don’t really understand why being good to the planet is such a subversive idea. And I definitely share your frustration regarding the ability of pro-industry types in masking their positions as agenda-free.

    I know what “Air Marshall” Carlin would say.

  5. Really Mad Professor Said,

    July 3, 2008 @ 5:23 pm


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