Meet the Robinsons was another one I didn’t see in theatres. Again, it’s a shame I didn’t. I wasn’t expecting to enjoy it so much, to be honest. I knew it was about a kid inventor who went to the future, but that was about it. We were informed yesterday that the offer we made on a house was accepted—no counter offers, no back and forth, and little stress. Suffice it to say, I was in a terrific mood when we settled in to watch the movie, with our buy-one-get-one-free A&W meals (got to love great coupons!).
James thought it started off a little slow, but when I saw singing frogs clearly alluding to Frank Sinatra, I was sold. By the line, “I have a big head and little arms. I'm just not sure how well this plan was thought through,” I was rolling with laughter. That may have been my favorite part. Rational T-Rex’s are apparently my Due Date. What do I mean by that? Well, on the plane ride when we were moving to Alaska, we rented one of those little movie screens from Alaska Airlines. We chose Due Date and commenced watching it. That is, until James was dying from not being able to laugh out loud due to the large number of people on the plane being very quiet. Then he lost it. At one part, I’m not even sure which scene now, he was laughing so hard we had to pause it. He continued silently shaking with laughter, tears streaming down his face, for a good five minutes. When we would start to watch it again, he’d collapse into silent giggles and we’d have to wait again. I thought I would die of embarrassment, as he rocked back and forth and created a much larger spectacle than just laughing. He thought he was going to have stroke from holding it in. To a (much) lesser degree, that’s what the T-Rex’s line made me do. Only without the embarrassment, since I was on our comfy brown couch with Nala in my lap.
What I love about Disney is consistency. Of course, when your studio makes fifty animated features, some are bound to be better than others. Some might even be—dare I say it?—not good. MTR was a laugh riot, but I predicted just about every twist and turn— from who Louis was to who the Bowler Hat man was. But the hilarity and cleverness of the lines and plot made up for that. The references to Frank Sinatra and his dark connections (“Little Doris now sleeps with the fishes”), the octopus butler, the T-Rex and the robot all made me laugh so much that I didn’t care that I knew what was coming. Even though MTR came out too recently to be a classic and wasn’t big enough to be largely remembered, it was still an enjoyable movie to watch. It had some great lessons and great special features.
James started enjoying it more when it had important lessons for kids. Listening to parents (shutting the garage door so nothing valuable gets stolen), focusing on who loves you instead of who birthed you for adopted kids, not blaming others for your mistakes, treating large reptiles with caution… Okay, maybe not so much that last one. But like Disney always does, there is a good, positive message. My favorite one is that sometimes, you have to wait a little while to find the people who will love you for who you are and encourage you to be the best version of that self. Meet the Robinsons made me laugh, but if I had kids, I would have been pleased with how the touchy topics were handled.
Another of my favorite parts of the film was when it ended with this quote from Walt Disney, “Around here, however, we don't look backwards for very long. We keep moving forward, opening up new doors and doing new things, because we're curious... and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.” Walt himself was an innovator and an inventor, the latter of which was something I’d forgotten. He dreamed new things up and then found a way to accomplish them. Walt (yeah, we’re on a first-name basis) has been an inspiration to me for most of my life; he’s the reason I love animation so much and the reason I want to work for the Disney Company. Walt has been my hero for a long time, inspiring me to always strive to create things of the best quality. And I think he could understand me better than anyone, especially after reading this quote:
"Why do we have to grow up? I know more adults who have the children's approach to life. They're people who don't give a hang what the Joneses do. You see them at Disneyland every time you go there. They are not afraid to be delighted with simple pleasures, and they have a degree of contentment with what life has brought - sometimes it isn't much, either."Walt’s wisdom always encourages me to be true to myself—that quote, in particular.