Monsters University (U)

Film

Family films

Monsters University

Time Out rating:

<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>4</span>/5

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Time Out says

Mon Jul 8 2013

The idea of a prequel to ‘Monsters, Inc’ sounds like a comedown for Pixar, the studio behind animations like ‘Wall-E’ and ‘Up’. Still, while ‘Monsters University’ can’t claim outright originality, this is a far richer movie than most were expecting.

‘Monsters University’ is inventive and entertaining. It’s a surprisingly resonant origin story for kid-scaring buddies Mike (the walking eyeball) and Sulley (the big furry lump). In the 2001 film we learned how the screams of frightened kids power the city of Monstropolis. In the new film, the focus is on training the elite monsters who raid the human world, with students Mike and Sulley super-keen to join the gang.

We know that Mike and Sulley achieve their goal, yet somehow the outcome is never taken for granted. That’s mostly because this movie is daring with its characterisation. It’s rare for a family movie to be built around folk who aren’t likeable, and these two are clearly going about things the wrong way. Swotty Mike (a perky Billy Crystal) knows the college reading list backwards, but we suspect that real scariness needs to be earned, not learnt from books. Meanwhile, Sulley (a hang-loose John Goodman) hails from an esteemed dynasty of scarers, making him a combo of laziness and arrogance.

True to buddy-pic formula, Mike and Sulley have some bonding to do, which unfolds via a tournament to crown the scariest undergrads. Amid the jocks versus nerds knockabout (mounted with Pixar’s best madcap precision), the writing touches on sensitive, grown-up subject matter. After all, how do we square our boundless ambitions with the crushing realities of luck and our personal limitations?

All of which is right in tune with the Pixar tradition of allowing adults to ponder while diverting the kids with brightly hued fun. There’s slightly too much sports-flick cliché holding the structure together for ‘Monsters University’ to rank up there with the ‘Toy Story’ trilogy. But it has enough of the right stuff to haunt the imagination long after the immediate buzz of its fluffy-furred cuteness has melted away. For a mere prequel, that’s a result.

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Release details

Rated:

U

UK release:

Fri Jul 12, 2013

Duration:

110 mins

Cast and crew

Director:

Dan Scanlon

Voices:

John Goodman, Billy Crystal, Jennifer Tilly

Cinemas showing Monsters University

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Showcase Newham

Jenkins Lane, Barking, IG11 0AD Show map/details

  • Address:

    Showcase Newham Jenkins Lane
    Barking
    IG11 0AD

Map
  • Thu Oct 23:

    • 11:00
    • 13:45
  • Fri Oct 24:

    • 11:00
    • 13:45

Users say

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<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>0</span>/5

Average User Rating

3.1 / 5

Rating Breakdown

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LiveReviews|6
1 person listening
Nikki

There's been a lot of negativity towards this film generally and I don't understand it at all. Loved Monsters Inc. and thought this was just as impressive an offering - geniunely funny and full of the kind of emotion that Pixar does so well. Thoroughly enjoyed it.

Nikki

There's been a lot of negativity towards this film generally and I don't understand it at all. Loved Monsters Inc. and thought this was just as impressive an offering - geniunely funny and full of the kind of emotion that Pixar does so well. Thoroughly enjoyed it.

Ian

I really am not sure what film the reviewer saw but it certainly wasn't the one I and a reasonably large number of family groups saw this afternoon. As a film this was dull and derivative. We go over the same journey we have been on many times before in college buddy movies with the derivative group of bad guy jocks that the team of misfit losers, including Mike and Sully, inevitably defeat. There was virtually no laughter during the whole film even from the large number of pre teen kids that should be this films target audience. A poor film that is just worth 2 stars. If you have kids go see Despicable Me 2 rather than this.

Ian

I really am not sure what film the reviewer saw but it certainly wasn't the one I and a reasonably large number of family groups saw this afternoon. As a film this was dull and derivative. We go over the same journey we have been on many times before in college buddy movies with the derivative group of bad guy jocks that the team of misfit losers, including Mike and Sully, inevitably defeat. There was virtually no laughter during the whole film even from the large number of pre teen kids that should be this films target audience. A poor film that is just worth 2 stars. If you have kids go see Despicable Me 2 rather than this.

Louise

LOVED 'Monsters Inc' and this one is just as good! From start to finish it was a colourful, crazy, funny delight! I also thought it was a good plot idea. Most of the characters from the previous film were here again, even though this is a 'prequel'. The only gripe is that 3D is not necessary and I wish film-makers would stop using it. It is such a con! See this film and have a rollicking good time!

Louise

LOVED 'Monsters Inc' and this one is just as good! From start to finish it was a colourful, crazy, funny delight! I also thought it was a good plot idea. Most of the characters from the previous film were here again, even though this is a 'prequel'. The only gripe is that 3D is not necessary and I wish film-makers would stop using it. It is such a con! See this film and have a rollicking good time!