Even More Cars

Because I’m watching “Cars” over and over and over again. It looks like I may be posting over and over again too. This time it’s with the observation on how “Cars” is the most Miyazaki-like of all the Pixar movies I’ve seen.

Not that this should be a surprise given Lasseter’s long-established admiration of Miyazaki.* But Pixar movies have still tended to have more traditionally-western kids movie plots with heros and villains being told from the point of view of an adult hero. “Cars” meanwhile is told from the point of view of a youth having to learn how to do his own thing after being taken out of his comfort zone.

*I hate hate HATE his introductions on the Miyazaki DVDs.

There’s a whole bunch of nostalgia for a simpler, now-past, lifestyle. And there’s the implication that we’re losing touch with nature and the land. There’s even an extended wordless sequence of discovery/epiphany where the audience is encouraged to lean forward and just enjoy the magic of the animation.* All that’s needed is to make the protagonist female and switch driving with flying.

*My favorite Miyazaki movies all have one of these sequences: the trainride to Swamp Bottom in Spirited Away, the tree-growing dream in Totoro, Porco’s dream in Porco Rosso.

It’s not quite Miyazaki, but I can see the influence much more than I see it on other Pixar films.

Author: Nick Vossbrink

Blogging about Photography, Museums, Printing, and Baseball Cards from both Princeton New Jersey and the San Francisco Bay Area. On Twitter as @vossbrink, WordPress at njwv.wordpress.com, and the web at vossbrink.net

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