A SURPRISINGLY ENTERTAINING PREQUEL TO MONSTERS INC. WITH LOTS OF HILARITY AND HEART!
By Nico Beland
Movie Review: A- (3 stars)
Mike and Sulley getting ready to become Scarers in Monsters University
In November of 2001, Pixar released an animated family comedy about monsters and why they scare children known as Monsters Inc., which would eventually become a critical success, an Academy Award nominated feature, and praised by critics and audiences. Now they made a prequel, Monsters University and while it isn’t quite as memorable as the original it’s still very comedic and charming.
Billy Crystal (Analyze This and That), John Goodman (Argo, Flight, The Big Lebowski), and Steve Buscemi (Hotel Transylvania, Reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction) reprise their voice roles as Mike Wazowski, James P. Sullivan (Sulley), and Randall in the film and I’m glad they did. There’s also some new additions to the Monster crew including Helen Mirren (RED, The Queen, Excalibur), Alfred Molina (Spider-Man 2, Rango), Charlie Day (Horrible Bosses, It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia), and many more “Monstrous” talents.
As a young Cyclops, Mike Wazowski has always dreamed of becoming the world’s greatest Scarer at Monsters Inc. but before he could become a Scarer, he had to go to college at Monsters University.
While there he meets his roommate, Randy (Randall), a comedic group of monster nobodies, and the son of one of the greatest Scarers of all time, James P. Sullivan or Sulley as most people call him. Mike becomes jealous of Sulley’s greatness and tries to challenge him at scaring; problem is Mike’s not scary.
Along the road of their humorous rivalry they learn more about one another and become the best of friends we know today, help a group of underdog monsters become champions, and eventually compete in the Scare Games to show everyone what it takes to be a monster.
Monsters University was a good prequel to Monsters Inc. and actually made me feel like a kid again in the theater watching Monsters Inc. back in 2001. While it wasn’t as great as Toy Story 3, you can be certain it’s a lot better than Cars 2 (yeah, I saw the trailer for the Cars spinoff, Planes but just keep telling yourself “Monsters University came out this year, I’m gonna be okay!”).
I wouldn’t consider this a Pixar masterpiece but it’s definitely one of their good animated films, like I said before Monsters Inc. was a little more memorable than this, does that mean I didn’t like University? Of course not! There’s enough comedy and heart in the story that can delight the adults just as much as the younger generation, in fact the humor and heartwarming story might be so delightful that it might scare you too, in a good way.