Wall-E: Clever installment from Pixar, or leftist propaganda?

In a recent post I compared some of my views with Glenn Beck’s to see how moderate I am. I found that I agreed with him maybe half the time; that like I thought, I am somewhere in the middle politically. Recently I saw the movie Wall-E. Very enjoyable Pixar movie, and more unique then most anime fare. In fact, it has a 97% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, which is extremely high.

Well, yesterday I was talking to a friend about it and he asked me about the apparent liberal/political bent that the movie has that conservative radio has been buzzing about. My response: “huh?”

I didn’t notice it. Honestly I thought there were more similarities to The Matrix than An Inconvenient Truth (which it is being compared to). In the movie Wall-E is a trash-compacting, Hello Dolly-loving mini-robot trying to clean up the mountains of garbage that humanity has left behind (humans are now living on a space station, owned by the same corporation that produced most of the garbage). His only friend is a cockroach, of course.

So where is the political propaganda? I didn’t see it. Sure the movie has a pro-environment message, but really, who isn’t pro-environment? Everyone likes trees and clean water and other living things. We’re all environmentalists to some extent (please vote in the poll to the left), and I think Wall-E is a fun movie for all ages that is NOT going to make or break the election this November, or convert any of our nations youth into Al Gore worshipers.

Some quotes:

“The environment talk started to freak me out… I don’t have much of a political bent, and the last thing I want to do is preach. I just went with things that I felt were logical for a possible future and supported the point of my story, which was the premise that irrational love defeats life’s programming, and that the most robotic beings I’ve met are us.” ~Andrew Stanton (Pixar)

“From the first moment of the film, my kids were bombarded with leftist propaganda about the evils of mankind.” ~Shannen Coffin

“And I just see Wally and he’s on the Earth and he’s cleaning stuff up and I looked at my wife and I said, it’s a frickin’ global warming movie…” ~Glenn Beck

“Conservative bloggers have dismissed the film’s environmental bent as left-wing propaganda, while eco-lobbyists are suspicious of a pro-recycling film that will generate mountains of disposable Disney merchandise.” ~The Independent

I can see the irony of the last quote, but I don’t think Pixar is blind to the fact that they too are a big corporation, and there will be a lot of Wall-E toys in landfills in the near future.

What do you think? Did you see Wall-E and think it was propaganda? Am I more liberal than I thought?

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About shenpa warrior

"Patience is not learned in safety." View all posts by shenpa warrior

13 responses to “Wall-E: Clever installment from Pixar, or leftist propaganda?

  • Jason The

    I thought it was a gun movie, nothing more.

    If forced to philosophize on the larger picture, I would say it presents a realistic possible future, which has always been the nature of science fiction.

    What would critics prefer? According to Beck (et al’s) whining, it seems to be that the arts (from film to print) can be enjoyed only if it projects rosy possibilities and Republican friendly perspectives. Seems a bit childish and petty.

  • David

    I saw Wall-E and recognized that some people would see a liberal message – I guess it depends on how hypersensitive you are.

  • adam

    Jason – are you sure your gun comment was not a politically-charged Freudian slip? 🙂 The controversy over this does seem petty. More so than the hoopla over Rachel Ray’s scarf supposedly symbolically promoting terrorists.

    David – I think that’s probably what most people are thinking. Your comment made me think of Goethe: “Each one sees what he carries in his heart.” & “Everyone hears only what he understands.” If we’re looking for liberal (or right-wing) conspiracy, we’ll find it, even in a movie like Wall-E, a news report, or a scarf.

  • Salt H2O

    I’ve yet to see the movie but I did read this article– it’s slow to pack the punch but read it all the way through. It’s interesting to see an extremely liberal writer take a swipe at Obama through the movie Wall-E.

  • adam

    Thanks for the link… from the Times? I have now gained even more respect for your political views. 🙂 I appreciate a balance of news/pundit sources.

    My favorite was the last line in the column:
    “Americans should see it to appreciate just how much things are out of joint on an Independence Day when a cartoon robot evokes America’s patriotic ideals with more conviction than either of the men who would be president.”

  • JM Bell

    Wait, it’s not a killer zombie robot movie? Thank God my sister took my kids to it already. I am finally reaching the point where if a move doesn’t have a tie to my childhood, Bruce Campbell or William Shatner, I don’t really want to see it.

  • adam

    Hah, I love Bruce Campbell. In fact, I don’t know why he wasn’t in Wall-E. He could have really given it a boost with at least a good cameo… Lately we’ve been watching Brisco County Jr. on DVD.

  • McFam

    I havn’t yet seen the movie, but I do have a general “I Like everything Pixar” stance. This mostly has to do with how efficiently Pixar movies quiet my children, and how much dedication they have to characters and story; something pretty much unseen in the CG movies world where movies like “Shark Tale” and “Madagascar” somehow make it past the story/script stage, and on to actual production.
    You’ll notice I’m completely avoiding the core question of your post. There is reason behind this folks… ITS A KIDS MOVIE – NOTHING MORE!
    That wich we think, (in this case the invention of a correlation between entertainment for 9 year olds and Leftist Propoganda -or whatever you want to call it) is perpetuated exponentially until the next stage of the create-think-perpetuate process moves us to come up with more irrelevant correlations, which lead to still more. In my mind, Wall-E is correlated more the sweet taste of stale Movie Theatre popcorn than anything even slightly resembling politics.
    I mean no offense to anyone, and am mostly joking around here. Feel free to bash…

  • McFam

    The above post was by Dan… Not Amy

  • patrick

    Wall-E totally looks like the robot from “Short Circuit”… minus the cheesy 80’s style of course

  • Steve

    I haven’t seen the movie, but this simple comes down to people being paranoid (both far sides are guilty of this) that they are under attack. Although, most these guys are the same ones that yell network tv is showing nothing but sex and drugs (I wish!), network news is liberally biased, and we are all going to burn in hell. Please, take some more oxycotin and call me in the morning.

  • adam

    Dan – no offense here! In fact, your comment was not offensive enough, so I may consider censoring it. lol.

    Steve – hah! That made me think of Will Ferrill on SNL a few years ago doing George Bush, talking about all the “wholesome violence and exquisite sex” on TV, and the guy playing Gore corrects him, (i.e. wholesale and explicit).

  • adam

    Just read this letter in the DesMo news: ““It’s acceptable to pick on fat people. But try portraying any other cross-section of our society in such a negative light… The blatant political agenda was, thankfully, way over his head.”

    So apparently, Wall-E also was blatantly political in attacking obesity. Sheesh. Next thing you know, obese people will want the right to marry. What is this world coming to?

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