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Why Do People Like Pixar?


I’m pretty
sure we’ve all been there. The argument as to what makes Pixar such a highly
praised animation studio and their movies so successful. Is it because their
movies are extremely promoted? Is it because of peer pressure? Or is it because
their movies are simply that good?

For quite a
while, I’ve wondered about this. I absolutely love Pixar. It’s probably the
only studio that has never let me down. They have movies where the plots
involve toys finding their way home, a fish trying to reunite with his lost
son, a group of monsters who live in an alternate dimension behind the closets,
a family of superheroes with marriage problems, a robot who spends life alone
on Earth after the human race left to live in space, and most recently, an old
man who travels in his house to South America to fulfill his dead wife’s last
wish, among several other stories.

There are
tons of people that love all of those films. They are incredibly different if
you look at their premises and overall storyline. If people love the studio
that makes these movies, then the films must have something in common. So what
is it? What makes people love Pixar so much?

Of course,
we could say: “Their movies are just THAT good.” But that’s the easy answer,

I don’t
believe this is something that can easily be explained. First we can look at
the plots, arguably the most important part of anything involving fiction.
Pixar’s writing in general borrows many elements from common situations, as well
as previous works of fiction. This is particularly notorious in The Incredibles, where the main plot is
as simple as you can imagine, to the point the film doesn’t even bother to
create ultra-original super powers for the main characters. In fact, one could
make a case for Elastigirl being a DC rip-off, yet people are willing to look
past all that and still label the movie as one of the best films ever. Then we
have plots like in Toy Story and Finding Nemo, whose premises can be
summed up in probably one line, yet those films are widely loved by the
audiences. To me, Monsters, Inc. and Wall-E stand out as the most creative
Pixar films.

Looking at
the technical aspects, well, there isn’t really much to say. Pixar’s animation
is beautiful, and a lot of people would agree that they probably make the best
use of CGI out of any other studio. The character movements are fluid and full
of life, and the incredibly detailed settings do contribute to create a
beautiful universe within each one of their films. Maybe a conclusion can be
drawn here and say that people love Pixar’s film due to how they look, but that
can’t be the one reason, because no matter how much eye candy a movie has, it
alone isn’t a well justified reason to love a studio, at least, not in my eyes.

Let’s look
at the characters. I find this aspect to be Pixar’s strongest point. If there
is something that always happens to me when watching a Pixar film, is that by
halfway through the film I find myself caring more for what’s going to happen
to the main characters than for what’s actually going to happen. I hope that
last statement made any sense.

that I always find amazing about Pixar films is that I don’t think I’ve never
come across a main character that can be defined as somehow negative. By that I
mean that they are always meant to be likable, to be sympathized with, or have
an attractive personality. And even when some characters, such as Woody or
Carl, can come off as jerks at some points, we know that deep down they have a
nice side and that their intentions are not bad. It’s a unique charm that can’t
be expressed entirely on words.

Perhaps the
most notable example is Wall-E. For all scientific and natural purposes, Wall-E
is not alive, meaning he doesn’t have emotions or personality. However, through
brilliantly done animation, body expressions, and most notably his voice,
Wall-E manages to send out a unique charm that captivates the audience. It’s
not common that a robot character can achieve something like this.

Now, I’m
not saying that Pixar is the be-all and end-all of the animated film industry,
as I like tons of films from lots of different studios (I like Dreamworks’ Antz better than A Bug’s Life, for example), but I do believe that Pixar is a studio
that knows how to make quality material in a more consistent way than most
other studios. Whether you believe this to be because of the plots, the
characters, or the animation, I guess it’s entirely up to you.

Maybe the
answer really is that simple. Pixar’s movies are just THAT good.