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Finally and thankfully… Pixar does it again!
Joejoesan9 June 2013
Warning: Spoilers
Of all the Pixar movies Monsters Inc. has always been my absolute favorite. The incredible story of the remarkable friendship between Sully, Mike and Boo made me watch the movie more than 10-15 times already. When it was released on blu-ray I was the first one to buy it. So when Pixar announced another Monsters movie I got concerned. How could Pixar make a better movie than the original? Or even one that equalled it? But having seen the movie last week I can ensure you all: Pixar is back on top. Monsters University is great fun and it's Pixar best since Up!.

Monsters University, a prequel to Monsters Inc., begins with a young and very little Mike Wazowski (Billy Crystal) still in primary school. After a field trip to Monsters Inc. he has only one dream: to become a scarer. Years later he arrives at Monsters University but soon learns he still has a long way to go. His main problem? Mike isn't scary at all. He befriends his roommate young Randall (Steve Buscemi), who at that time is an unimportant loser (and later gets seduced by the dark side). The first night he makes an enemy out of Sully (John Goodman), a freshman who thinks that his family name (of legendary scarers) is enough to get him through school. A personal vendetta is born.

Things go wrong when Mike and Sully accidentally destroy a sacred item that belongs to the devilish Dean Hardscrabble (a brilliant Helen Mirren). They get expelled from all Scare Classes and will not graduate as a real Scarer. Luckily Mike comes up with a plan, a bet with the dean. If he finds a team to compete in the Scare Games and if he indeed wins, he's allowed to follow the Scare Classes until the end. Dean Hardscrabble approves. Now it's up to Mike, Sully and his team of losers to work as a team and go the distance…

In Monsters University the Scare Games are very well done. I can see both kids and adults laughing their socks off when Mike and Sully, in the same team but still enemies, are doing their first race and try not to step on the items that make their body grow. Bizarre, but hilarious! Their next assignment, when they have to steal something in the library, is also a winner. But what really works in Monsters University is that the story is mainly about friendship. We not only see how Mike and Sully turn from big enemies into big friends; they become soul mates for life. To join the Scare Games Mike must find five extra members to form a team and the only ones left are a bunch of nerds that no one pays attention to and a big blue monster that he absolutely hates (Sully). Still Mike succeeds in making it work.

Even when you know that Mike and Sully will win the Scare Games (that isn't a spoiler, is it?), this film isn't predictable at all. It doesn't end with Sully holding up the Scare cup but it takes one more great scene to bring Mike and Sully definitely together. I will not spoil it for you, but it involves a door to the human world and a little green monster that's depressed.

Monsters University is a great film. It's both funny and sentimental in all the right places. Fans of the first movie will see a lot of cameos in this one (Yeti!). The story ends when Monsters Inc. begins. I will even advise the next generation to see Monsters University first and then go on to Monsters Inc.

Yeah, my faith in Pixar is restored. Although I must confess that with Planes coming up, things can change very fast in the wrong direction. But maybe that's because I have never liked the Cars movie.

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Nostalgic film for the old and young
clumbj17 July 2013
The first Monsters Inc. came out when i was just 7 years old and immediately became one of my all time favourites from the day I saw it. With extremely high expectations in mind and excitement especially for Pixar's close attention to relevance (as I am actually at university now myself) I went to see the new one as soon as it came out.

The film is a prequel following closely to our much loved earlier Characters, Mike and later Sully as they present to us their lives prior to the first movie. As well as an adorable new cast of monsters which are equally lovable as the old ones.

To my delight, the film exceeded most if not all my earlier expectations. The plot is well written, funny and most of all extremely heart warming especially to long time fans like myself as well as those younger viewers that might not have even seen the first one.

The nostalgic element of the film is perhaps the most well written. Every twist and turn reveals a huge or tiny explanation to the events and habits of the characters that I previously saw in the first film. Questions I never even asked myself, like why Randall's eyes are so squinty or how Sully and Randall's rivalry originated.

Although i absolutely loved the movie, perhaps its because I've waited for 12 years but at some points it left me slightly unsatisfied and I'd have loved for some parts to be explained more thoroughly.

Regardless of my only criticism, the movie made me laugh, cried with tears of joy, almost actually cried and was both heart warming and action packed. What more could you ask for? I urge those fans of the first film as well as anyone that just wants to have a good time at the cinema to see it. It'll be well worth your time!
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Pleasant Story of Friendship
Claudio Carvalho9 February 2014
When Mike Wazowski is young, he visits the Monsters University in a tour of his primary school. A senior student gives his hat to Mike and he plans to become a scary monster.

Years later, Mike joins the Monsters University and on the arrival, he receives a flier of the Scare Games that will take place soon in the campus. Mike also befriends his roommate Randall. When the lazy student James P. "Sully" Sullivan, who belongs to a family of famous "scarers", breaks in his room, they start a competition in class. Their dispute ends when they accidentally break the pride and of joy of Dean Abigail Hardscrabble, a cylinder with her greatest achievement – a powerful scream of a boy. They both are expelled from the scare classes by Hardscrambble that tells that Sully is lazy and Mike is not scary, and they become enemies.

When Mike recalls the Scare Games, he sees his only chance to return to the scare course. He makes the application to participate, but he learns that he needs a fraternity. Mike joins the Oozma Kappa that is the only fraternity available with four losers, but he is informed that the fraternity needs to have six members. Sully offers to complete the team and Mike has no other alternative but accept Sully in his team. Then he bets with Hardscrambble that if he wins the games, she will accept them in the scare classes. Soon the game begins...

"Monsters University" is a pleasant story of friendship and a prequel of "Monsters Inc.". The plot is based on the American college life and despite the lack of any identification with my country, with fraternities and silly parties of American college students, the plot is funny and entertaining. My vote is eight.

Title (Brazil): "Universidade Monstros" ("Monsters University")
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I guess that for once I was easy to please!
MartinHafer23 June 2013
" Monsters University" is a new film from Pixar that is a prequel to their film "Monsters Inc.". In addition to the two main characters, a whole lot of new characters are introduced at the college that Mike and Sully attended. The plot involves Mike trying to become a 'scaring major'—something quite unthinkable since he isn't the least bit scary. There's a lot more to the film than this, but I won't spoil it by saying more about the plot.

My daughter was lucky enough to go to the debut of "Monsters University". She liked it but also felt the story was disappointing since it lacked original characters and the story reminded her of too many college films (like "Revenge of the Nerds" and "Animal House"). My wife saw it with me and she said that the film put her to sleep! This is all very odd, as I am usually the most difficult to please in the family when it comes to films—yet I thoroughly enjoyed the film and nearly gave it a 9. While I would agree it lacks originality, it did make me smile. It was a nice, gentle film—one that I didn't mind just watching without picking it apart (like I usually do). Much of this is because the CGI was simply gorgeous and It was a pleasure watching such a beautiful film…as well as such a nice and enjoyable film.
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The Unnecesscary is strong in this one
diac22830 June 2013
Pixar, where has your courage gone? In this decade alone, we have been treated to two sequels, a prequel, a princess story (as if Disney doesn't have enough of those), with another sequel on the way. Pixar's Dreamworks mannerisms has been kind of unnerving, especially when we have seen the ballsy efforts like The Incredibles, Ratatouille, and especially (especially) Wall-E. The original stories are occurring less frequent, and while it's leading to guaranteed money for the company and Disney the die-hard Disney fans and film fanatics have been less than impressed.

And now we have Monster's University. Surely the charm is there, the animation is the usual Pixar quality, and the production value remains the best in the animation business. But there was a constant sense of pointlessness to this prequel throughout the whole thing, and it lacks the heart and humor of the original Monster's Inc. The originality of the 2001 gem is also missing, as University dwells into familiar clichéd territory in the second half.

This movie works well with the tykes and the true-blue Mike and Sully fans, but with the rest of us who really didn't care much to see how they met----well, there's not much here. It is simply about Mike and Sully's rivalry during the start of their university career and how they had to learn to accept each other if they ever wanted a chance to remain in the school.

In the grand scheme of the G-rated filmmaking culture, Monster's University excels and surpasses that of the normal fare. But this is Pixar we are talking about, a company that bleeds pure quality and has created some of the greatest animated films in history. They have raised the bar too high to create something so….normal. It is odd from a Pixar movie to see failed jokes and a sense of predictability.

It's not as funny, not as heartfelt, not as surprising, not as deep, and not as engaging as Pixar's best, and not even Dreamworks' best for that matter. It is simply light entertainment that will calmly entertain and not overwhelm---while at the same time not linger in your memory like Pixar's best like Toy Story, Nemo, Ratatouille and Up.

Good but not great—and in Pixar standards that should never be good enough.
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A must see prequel
Avid Climber9 July 2013
Monsters University is the prequel to Monsters inc., a wildly popular animation by Pixar. It's basically a college movie set in the monster world, but with a nice deviation from the standard.

The good. Still the same incredibly interesting world with all its colors, fantastic creatures, and quirks. Interesting story, especially for the twist. Great animation, as usual. Easily enjoyable by adults. Perfect ending. Excellent voice acting.

The bad. Lots of college movie, underdogs, and jocks versus nerds clichés.

The ugly. Nothing.

The result. If you liked the first one, you'll like this one too.
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Pixar back to making top quality animated films
jonedney12411 June 2013
Warning: Spoilers
When I first heard about this and saw trailers, I felt like it would be OK, a good laugh but not enough to really challenge other Pixar films. I can safely say that I was wrong on that score, for it manages to not only be successful prequel to the original film but also a great film in its own right. Billy Crystal and John Goodman slip effortlessly back into their roles as Mike Wazowski and Sully despite playing younger versions of themselves. The other main highlight of the voice cast is Helen Mirren's intimidating Dean Hardscrabble, who is a menacing presence and I'm sure the design of her character was modelled on Maleficent from Sleeping Beauty. Steve Buscemi's Randall also returns and although I felt that he would have a stronger part in the movie, the seeds are sown for his villainous ways in the original.

What astounded me was the creativity throughout the film, the effort that had gone into the university environment and the monsters that inhabited it (there's one monster who has university down pat in a hilarious moment that all students will understand!). The new characters that become Mike and Sully's friends, the Oozma Kappa gang, are all adorable and memorable, providing a lot of the film's humour as well as one of its most touching moments towards the end. The film is consistently hilarious but also remembers that it has to develop the initial rivalry then friendship of Mike and Sulley. The world set up in the original is also included more than I thought it would (a couple of trips to Monsters Inc. itself) and there are some brilliant cameos from two memorable characters from Inc.

Although the friend I was watching it with said that the film was low stakes, as you knew how it would end, I found that the film still managed to feel fresh despite dealing with underdog clichés and the problem of being a prequel. In a Q and A after the preview screening, the director and producer said that this was about when your dreams don't come true: a strangely anti-Disney philosophy in many ways but one that is honest and teaches kids reality about the world of work, none more so than a delightful montage of pictures explaining how Mike and Sully ended up in their respective positions in Inc. I haven't seen Cars 2 (not sure I want to) and although I enjoyed Brave, it is definitely lesser Pixar fare whereas Monsters University sees them back at the top, creating a touching and hilarious story that will hopefully see them get back to dishing out the quality every time.

I am a bit confused as to some of the critical reviews, and why this film currently has 75% on Rotten Tomatoes is beyond me. I sincerely hope this will go up, because it should be nearer 90. I watched Finding Nemo in 3D in April and although Nemo isn't my favourite Pixar, MU is easily as good as that. One critic argues that this film is too similar to The Internship...well that's the Internship's problem, as this film will have been longer in the making undoubtedly and judging from IMDb score doesn't seem to have anywhere near the same creativity and imagination behind it. This may not scale the heights of the Toy Story trilogy but it most certainly is not forgettable and the fact that I nearly shed a tear at one point (and it was NOT for the main two characters funnily enough) proves that the film gives more than just 'how did Sulley and Mike become friends'. If everyone keeps expecting Pixar to produce a Toy Story every time and if they leave a film having not experienced that and express their disappointment/outrage as a result, that's unfair. My favourite Pixars are Toy Story 1-3, Monsters Inc and Wall-E (10/10), then Incredibles, Up, Finding Nemo, Bug's Life (9/10) and I would place Monsters University just after A Bug's Life but in many ways it's probably better.

9/10 (RT had better follow suit)
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socklessmenace19 July 2013
Warning: Spoilers

Let me start by saying "Monsters Inc." was one of my favourite movies when I was younger and still stands in my top three Pixar films with "The Incredibles" and "A Bug's Life" ('COUGH' Seven Samurai 'COUGH'). So I went into this film with high expectations. I don't know why. I should'v known what to expect from a university based prequel.

Where "Monsters Inc." succeeded was where most Pixar films succeed, it's originality. "Monsters Inc." is one of the most original ideas ever conceived, a story centerd around monsters in an alternate monster universe that travel through closet door portals to the human world to scare children to generate energy for their world. It doesn't get much more original then that. And the originality stopped dead there, because the last thing this prequel has is originality.

For starters there were barely any new characters... I should rephrase, no new characters worth remembering or caring about. The only main new characters added were complete stereotypical university centred characters, the geeks and the jocks, and in their most generic forms. Oh and don't forget the overly strict administrator who (Surprise, Surprise) shows caring by the end of the film having a change of heart and doesn't seem so mean after all. And of course the stereotypical dumb/naive, easily excitable mother figure.

The most promising thing about this movie was seeing the transition for Randal. When he came into the movie (not really a spoiler he's in the trailer and it's in the first ten minutes) he's nice, so I was excited to see his transition to becoming the villain we see him as in "Monsters Inc." and let me tell you (possible spoiler ahead, jump to next paragraph if you want absolutely nothing spoiled) it was vastly disappointing. It was literally two scenes: one where he just outwardly tells Mike he wants to be popular so he can't hang with him anymore. And the next is he's in the opposing team in a competition against Mike and Sully and loses and then says "that's the last time I lose to you, Sullivan" I was heart-brokenly disappointed at this. To me it actually belittled Randal as a villain in the original because suddenly he just didn't seem that evil anymore now knowing that it all stemmed from him losing once against Sully in University and wanting to be popular. They at least could'v developed it further...more than two scenes at least.

The rest of the movie was just countless predictable plot points. It's the age old university centred movie story of rival houses having a competition (Screw it there's going to be spoilers, I'm angry and ready to rant) and of course Mike and Sully start off not being friends and what'ya know it they become friends because, common, I know you know this one... Yeahp, that's right! They discover they have to work together to succeed at things instead of trying to do it on their own and it brings them together...because we haven't seen that in a dozen Disney movies already. AND THAT'S IT! There's literally nothing more than that. The first movie was so groundbreaking and had such amazing scale and then they just took those characters, put them in university, and told a story we'v all heard plenty of times before.

It wasn't even that funny. I can remember laughing out loud once: a slug monster is late for class and starts trying to run but he just goes really slow and they pull the whole "Family Guy" joke goes on longer than expected and I admittedly laughed quite long and loud. But that's it. The rest I could recognize it was supposed to be funny but it just didn't work for me. I was probably just too disappointed to laugh.

The one redeeming thing about this movie (ULTIMATE SPOILER) is at the end they get expelled, which I didn't expect. It shows in a montage that they found their own way to work at Monsters Inc. showing that university isn't necessarily the only option, which I think is a good message to send to the young people of today (considering most are brainwashed the opposite).

But that was it. The rest of the movie was just constantly predictable and disappointing. They had such great material to work with and it's like they didn't even try. I felt like I was watching a Disney channel show that was a spin off of one of their well known movies, or like a made for TV movie. It was the equivalent of Shrek's Christmas special...only I expect something like that from Dreamworks after seeing Shrek 2...and 3...and 4. Pixar is the last group of people I would call unimaginative, and yet here I am. They should'v left it at the original if they weren't willing to do something fresh with it. I think Pixar should stick to original films and stay away from sequels/prequels. Yes, they struck gold with Toy Story 3 apparently (I'm the only person who hasn't seen it yet), but that doesn't mean everything else needs a sequel...and yes "Plains" counts as a sequel to "Cars", I don't care what you say. Actually I wouldn't mind a sequel to "The Incredibles"...okay, if you're going to make a sequel make sure it's WORTH making and you're not just making a sequel for the sake of making it with no real original exciting story to tell. I expect other movies to make sequels without putting too much thought into if they're worth making, because they know people will see them and they'll make money. But not Pixar, they were the last production company I'd expect to do that. A sequel/prequel should be able to stand on it's own, this prequel barely stands on the shoulders of the original, it wobbles at best.

I'm just so...

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It Shines in a Summer of Disappointment
Brandon Oberdorf22 June 2013
First and foremost, this movie should be almost painfully relatable to the Disney Renaissance Generation. For the convenience of the meanings told in Disney and Pixar films, couldn't be more relatable to the age of those born in the mid 90's growing up. Also, for the question of a Monsters Inc. Prequel being necessary? Make that decision after the credits roll, for this was the most enjoyable movie I've seen so far in 2013. In an overwhelming blockbuster summer of over-hyped excitement followed by mild to severe disappointment, Monsters University isn't just a good sign for Pixar, it's a good sign that 2013 can be one of the best years of film.

Now! On to the review! The story of the origin of the friendship between one-eyed Mike Wazowski and the blue furred James P. Sullivan in their freshman year at Monsters University. This film has homages to all the classic college comedy movies, and as it doesn't hold out on laughs for the kids and adults, it has a great amount of heart. Questions of what the future holds, and if our dreams are as possible as we hope they are. Punches aren't pulled on these questions, which is why it isn't just some animated movie to take the kids to see.

References to real college life are blended with superb imagination of the monster world. Rather it be a long blonde haired guitar player, or the horns on the school bus. All original voice talent returns and keeps up with the track record of great performances in Pixar films. Billy Crystal, John Goodman, and Steve Buscemi grasp their characters and give them entirely different motivations compared to the original. Instead of a hardworking team, the two have a rivalry, and the supporting cast of their fraternity supply more relatability with a great variety of lovable monsters who help fill the story with even more heart.

The compatibility with Mike and Sully can be a bit surprising, for one is the study hard teachers pet, and the other a natural born scare student. And just as you think your more like one, the other comes in and you realize that even monsters can be scared of the real world just like us today. Fear of what life has in store, and if we have the talent to fulfill our dreams. This is a theme a lot of critics are missing, and shines making it worthy of being a great Pixar movie and prequel to a great classic.

The story isn't terribly generic as one may think, and every act is more different from the last. Starting with the clash between Mike and Sully, then onto the scare games, an intense series of games that declare supremacy of M.U. For the third and final act couldn't be more surprising though. It not only serves as a great climax, but something that we can once again commend Pixar for telling great stories in out of the box thinking that we should think paying for the $10 dollar ticket is worth it. And boy did I think this movie was worth it, for I will be definitely be seeing it a second and possibly third time. It wasn't a prequel we originally wanted, but it was a film that we and Pixar needed. And boy am I glad it happened.
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Monsters University pleasantly defines its title with a great story
keyos2725 June 2013
With Animation industries overproducing computer-animated films for either sequels or prequels, expectations from critiques and longtime cartoon lovers who grew up with classic Disney movies are pretty high. For this reason, It has been a while since I get to be surrounded by parents who like to bring their kids to let them enjoy bright and comical scenes.

After coming to the theater with low excitement, not only does this movie exceed my expectation but it also proves that Pixar is not a sort of company that tries to take audience's wherewithal by making a mediocre prequel based on the reputation of an original one.

As usual, Pixar consistently unleashes intriguing, unique, and appealing characters with flexible movements and simplified traits that attract a wide range of audiences. Especially when it comes to presenting different breeds of monsters with extraordinary looks and abilities, followed by an absolute storytelling skill that moves everyone's emotion.

As the setting takes place in the old days before Mike and Sullivan get to work together in Monsters, inc., you get to find out how they meet and grow their friendship. The story consists of both internal and external conflicts that college students can unanimously relate to. Pixar does an amazing job on capitalizing as much college-related elements as possible to emphasize the importance of corroborations, personal identity, and working hard to achieve your goal. There are also tons of humors that make you laugh periodically.

In a nutshell, this is a sincere and endeavored film that sends us various messages to help us progress in many different ways. I strongly recommend this to all the students out there who are struggling with their school life. It is such an inspirational movie and Pixar still rocks!
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The prequel that no one asked for, but everyone will watch.
MattBriselli30 April 2014
Monsters University: the prequel that no one asked for, but everyone will watch. It would appear that Pixar has recently run out of original ideas and has resorted to making sequels and prequels of older more successful movies (Cars 2, Planes, Monsters U and Finding Dory). That being said, the film was actually pretty decent and was rather watchable and enjoyable. The film had multiple unexpected twists, which avoided having an all too predictable ending. It also explained many of the features of its sequel, like Randall's rivalry with Mike and Sully and the Abominable Snowman.

Reviving the voice talents of Billy Crystal, John Goodman and Steve Buscemi and adding Helen Mirren and Charlie Day, amongst others, this film stayed within the universe that the original movie had created, however in comparison failed to live up to its predecessor's greatness.
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Monsters U, entertaining but fails to meet
Chris Braybrooke2 November 2013
I really loved Monsters Inc, but this movie failed to meet expectations. Yes, it offers a little back story on two of the most memorable characters of all time, but I was not attached to them like I was during the first movie. The best scenes are at the end when Roz makes an appearance...Mike and Sully are great characters, but in the first one, you had some minor characters who made the movie much more charming (Roz, Boo, etc...) and I just didn't find myself growing any attachment to Mike's college nerd buddies. A good movie and maybe would be much more entertaining to someone who hasn't seen the first (little kids would giggle at the monsters I'm sure), but this movie misses the mark.
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A rare blockbuster that could teach audiences something
Likes_Ninjas9017 June 2013
Warning: Spoilers
One of the more understated strings in the bow of animation giant Pixar are the moral lessons that their films provide to audiences. In 2001 Monsters, Inc. introduced us to Mike and Sully, two monsters that were part of a corporation where monsters could travel through teleportation doors and into bedrooms of children to scare them so that their screams would power their operations. Children were also seen as dangerous outsiders until the business learnt that laughter is a more successful for increasing production. Overcoming our fears, risk taking and laughter are lessons that the animation studio itself taught us and embraced on its own.

Pixar have again upheld this optimistic, moral outlook because Monsters University is a celebration of diversity and learning your specialist skills. The film is a prequel to the 2001 film, with Billy Crystal and John Goodman reprising their roles as monsters Mike and Sully, who are not friends but college rivals learning the trade of scaring and hoping to be accepted into the Monsters, Inc.

The film will give parents an opportunity to talk to their children about the subject of college in a positive outlook. In American there has rarely been a more important time to have this conversation. The Huffington Post wrote in April that there had already been thirteen college shootings this year. In 2007 thirty-two people were shot dead at Virginia Tech. Though never short of funding, the American education system also still produces consistently subpar performances. Countering these pillars of fear and tension, Monsters University captures the emotions of college life and then gleefully subverts them.

The core of the film is the friendship of Mike and Sulley, who represent contrasting attitudes in college study life. Mike is hardworking, ambitious and by the book but also small, an outcast and a loner. He wants to be the sole leader. Sulley is unprepared, lazy and coasts off his family name as a Sullivan. He's bigger, more intimidating and popular than Mike and expects everything will come through his natural ability and that he doesn't need to study. After making a bet with Dean Hardscrabble (Helen Mirren), they're thrown together into a Scare Games contest, where they reluctantly band together, along with other loners, to complete a series of challenges to stay enrolled in the college.

Each game played against the other rival fraternity houses gives the film a story structure that is not dissimilar to The Internship. Unlike that film though, you actually care dearly about the characters. This is one of Pixar's greatest strengthens, not just as animators but as filmmakers. Each of the hilarious characters, including a middle-aged student and a two-headed dancer, helps to understand each other's strengths and how to use these in the tasks.

It could be viewed as a generic 'be yourself' message but in the context of a college setting its thematically sensible because college should be a place where people learn their own skills and can take unexpected detours and still succeed. For those assuming this is a derivative underdog story, there is a huge point of conflict in this film, coupled with Pixar's trademark lump in the throat moments, as the story shifts into its darker unexpected final act.

The director of the film was Dan Scanlon, who worked as a storyboard artist for Pixar on Cars. He graduated from Columbus College of Art and Design with a Bachelor of Fine Arts and in his first Pixar film as director he has used these visual skills exceptionally. The film is hysterically funny, partly due to the wit but also the number of sight gags on display.

Monsters University itself resembles a proper college, with lecture rooms, dorms and orientation stalls, and uses this detail to reference old college films and campus stereotypes. I liked the variety in the monster designs, like how one of the students had a moustache shaped like a vampire bat or the Gothic monster that had spikes coming out of the microphone she was holding. Dan Scanlon also controls the beats of the story so that there are breathing spaces between the challenges and that action sequences are brisk and never overlong.

Hollywood films now are bigger and louder, but with little to say. Monsters University is a rare blockbuster that could teach audiences something. The film is about learning to accept fear and failure, while remaining hopeful about change and growth through our different skills. Pixar's personal talent is that their films are still as simulating as they are funny and creative.
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Once again a pretty solid effort from Pixar. Great job.
almanjit259 July 2013
Pixar is the source of some of the most deep, thoughtful and meaningful CG films and have created a great name for themselves. Personally i love most of their films. I almost joined the naysayers prior to this films release before reminding myself that Pixar has never really let ME down. And as expected excellence reigned supreme. This is in my opinion a really good film. Perhaps not at the level of Up and Wall-E, but it is certainly not bad either.

Animation: A+ The animation is fantastic, then again what else can be expected from Pixar. Top quality CG that is detailed and yet so brilliantly original. Sully and Mike look fantastic as do all the other characters. And if you see the detail of the university, Mike's room and many other portions such as that in the human world, you will be flabbergasted by how amazing it looks. The cuteness of the characters is an added bonus. Pixar is one of those rare studios that pay the greatest attention to surroundings as well as every other aspect, making you want to take notice of everything from posters in the dorm, headlines in newspapers and the sheer workmanship of the great environments whether they are the university, the living room, the bedroom or any other setting.

Story: B+. OK i agree there were parts that had resemblance to Revenge of the Nerds and Harry Potter and the Goblet of fire and it got quite to close to situations in college movies of years past. Though the originality of the scare games and what they signify to Mike is really quite sweet and pretty original if you think about it. I like the youthful characters of Mike and Sully but the change in personality is way too drastic when comparing to how they turn out in Monsters Inc. Also they at some points feel like characters from similar movies and this tends to make the film feel tired. So it is best not to make comparisons if you want to have a good time.

You don't get your usual ending and the pretty true-to-life messages elevate it from being just ordinary. The reality of their situation and the hard life lessons that are thrust upon them give a picture of the pitfalls life gives us in real life and the effect it has on character. These are just some of the major, resounding themes. And yet even through it the positivity and depth still resonates. You will no doubt smile all through and have several genuine laugh out loud moments that add to this pretty great emotional mix.

Yes a college comedy does not need to be PG or R rated to be funny and this one succeeds in triumphing over other college movies. And as someone who understands and has been through what Mike's character faces in this movie, that added extra resonance and heart. A twist on the similar films, heart(as with all Pixar), depth, resounding mature themes, life as we know it, witty humor and smiles galore, what more could you ask for? There are some minor continuity errors between the prequel and the original but those are minor and the story more than makes up for it. All in all a good effort. Monsters Inc is a great film, and one of the absolute best from Pixar. Monsters U may not be at its level but it nevertheless a very good film.

Music: A. The score is good, really good. Though i felt so much similarity between it and the Toy Story trilogy as well as The Princess and the Frog. Then again they too were works by Randy Newman and those scores were great too. Perhaps it is just me but i also noted similar music to Up in this awesome film.

Overall: A great film that can be seen as a family, a group of friends or individually. A film that will be appreciated especially by college student. Pixar once again does a good job.

As a small note, look out for great references to Monsters Inc. It will add to the smiles.

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Good but not great
gaspyy25 June 2013
Monsters, Inc. was the first Pixar movie where I saw their genius. Such an incredible mix of themes and emotions. From the basic premise of "humanizing" monsters to the tiny details in Boo's behavior that I did not notice until I had a daughter of my own, it was beautiful and original.

My top Pixar movies are (in no particular order) Finding Nemo, Monsters, Inc., Wall-E and The Incredibles. These are movies that actually mean something to me.

Monsters University is definitely better than Cars 2 and Brave, but I did not find that "magic ingredient" in it. If anything, it was formulaic - the same old story retold for the millionth time.

It was certainly nice to see Sully and Mike again and see how they became friends, but the story was rather shallow with little character development (I would have loved to see Randall's evolution for example).
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They're back... and its GOOOOD.
Andre Santhumayor19 June 2013
MONSTERS UNIVERSITY is a prequel to MONSTERS INC., directed by Dan Scanlon. The characters include the voices of Billy Crystal, John Goodman, Hellen Mirren.

The film goes back to where Mike Wazowski and James P. Sullivan were before they were buddies and in Monsters Inc. It shows how the two of them were in university, showing the relationship between them which led up to the two of them becoming the best of friends.

Alright, so MIKE AND SULLY ARE BAACKK!!! Well, thats what every kid or adult that was associated with the enjoyment of Monsters Inc should say. Okay, so it's been 12 years since we saw these two on-screen, providing us with animated humor, and now they're back again, to show us how they were in University. The teaser trailer was extremely funny as it showed a prank played on Mike by Sully, and it gave a short look-in into the sort of relationship we would be seeing. Soon enough, the trailer came out and boy did it get people hooked. Finally, I was able to catch a premiere screening of the film, to my advantage, and IT WAS GREAT.

So let's start talking about the film, not necessarily the trailers. Who are we kidding, at first when we heard that Monsters University was coming, that a sequel was coming to the classic Monsters Inc, we gave up hope, saying that no one could make it better than the first one. But Dan Scanlon challenged that, and the first teaser proved it. And I think that the movie does it as well- kinda. So, Monsters University isn't AS good as Monsters Inc, but it does come second in line. It includes Mike and Sully in an underdog team, but throughout the film, you can't help and laugh out at the jokes, and smile at the fact that the sequel is finally out.

Monsters University is GREAT. It has two parts and its all happy and fun. I, honestly, liked the way they showed the chemistry developing between Mike and Sully. You can actually feel it, and even though its animation, it feels real. This one isn't quite sad, like how Inc was. Inc ended in a sad tune, at the fact that Boo was gone, but this one ends at the beginning of Inc. I loved the way it ended. The line that Mike uses just makes you go like, 'YEAH! Thats what I'm talking about!' Honestly, I'm not gonna say any more, because I don't wanna spoil anything for anyone.

In the end, Monsters University is great fun. Pixar has done it again, the director has managed to do it. I don't think that there is gonna be another part to the franchise, which kinda dulls me, but at the end of Monsters University it makes you wanna see more, which you will only get by watching Inc, since its the continuation. Go watch Monsters University, with anyone to be honest. I guarantee you an extremely fun ride that these two will give you.

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Not great, but totally fun
zetes23 June 2013
A prequel to one of Pixar's most beloved films, Monsters Inc. In all honesty, I wasn't looking forward to this one too much. A sequel would have been a better option. Like the Toy Story movies, it should take place a long while later, and Mike and Sully should meet back up with a teenage Boo or something. Boo was the soul of that movie, and, of course, in a prequel, Boo can't exist. Instead, we get the story of how Mike and Sully met in college. The story is made up of a ton of college movie clichés in the Monsters world. And it's fine. Not great, nothing really special, but it's very enjoyable and the animation is gorgeous. The last time I revisited Monsters Inc., the animation seemed a little primitive, but Pixar has more than perfected it now, and I loved seeing the wonderful monster designs. Steve Buscemi, the villain from the first film, is prominent in the cast again. Other famous cast members include Nathan Fillion, Sean Hayes, Dave Foley, Charlie Day, Aubrey Plaza and Alfred Molina. The most memorable new character is Dean Hardscrabble, played by Helen Mirren. The design, kind of a centipede dragon, is extremely cool and actually pretty creepy.
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Two for the Money
Neddy Merrill4 December 2013
The Pixar classic "Monsters, Inc." called out for a prequel in the same way that "Cars" called out for one sequel and one brand extension which is to say not at all. Anyway, the studio needs to bring in revenue while it works to recover from "Brave" so out comes this exploration of Mike and Sully's origin story. Even given the original already established the universe, the story still lacks originality with fairly stock characters and situations. The writing fully lacks the crackling lines of the original and is someone maudlin and overly dramatic for a kids animated comedy. Billy Crystal and the always excellent John Goodman put in a journeyman effort but their occupation of the AARP demographic while playing teenagers does raise the question of why Disney didn't just find some sound-a-like younger actors (Billy Crystal's "Lawn Gyland" accent invites easy imitation). The animation does present some great architectural shots and is colorful and entertaining. In short, had the original never existed "Monster's U" would sit as a pleasant but forgettable summer popcorn experience.
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Disappointing! 4/10
leonblackwood17 November 2013
Review: Like many other Pixar movies, you can't fault the look and feel of the movie, but it was a bit too kiddie for me. Usually that mix it up with adult and children humour, but this is just a straight out kids movie. It does look amazing through and you can see the hard work that the animation team went through, but it doesn't touch the first movie which was original and much more funnier. The new characters in this sequel, wasn't that great, and the storyline was a bit corny. I liked the twist near the end, which was unpredictable, but not enough to save the movie. It's definitely one for the kids, who will really enjoy it, and judging by the money that it made, they surely did. Watchable!

Round-Up: Billy Crystal's voice as Mike, was pretty annoying after a while but John Goodman's voice really does suit Sulley. The attention to detail on each of the characters was brilliant along with the colours that were used by the Pixar studio. The race with the pink spiky balls made me laugh, but it does seem like Pixar are missing the magic that they had with movies like a Toy Story and the original Monster Inc. Maybe it's because they have moved Disney? Anyway, if you want the kids to sit in front of the TV whilst your cleaning the house, then this is the movie for you, but for adult entertainment, it's just average.

Budget: $200million Worldwide Gross: $744million (WOW!)

I recommend this movie to people who were fans of the original Monsters Inc. 4/10
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MU is more than OK.
BA_Harrison2 November 2013
The cruddy trailer hardly filled me with hope for this belated prequel to Monsters, Inc., and the relatively laugh-free first thirty minutes did little to change my mind; however, once Mike and Sully and their Oozma Kappa fraternity brothers enter the Scare Games, the film really picks up and the laughs start to come thick and fast. By the time the end credits were rolling, Monsters University had given me lots of giggles and even a few genuine belly laughs and I'd completely altered my opinion: the oft-used 'under-dogs do good' plot may not be as fresh as the original, but overall I reckon the film is well worth watching.

Some of the best moments are clever one-liners and subtle fleeting visual gags which could go unseen, or over the head of younger viewers, but that gives the film repeat value; I hope to catch even more funny stuff the second time around after I proudly add the DVD to my Pixar collection.

A very respectable 8/10 (If there had been more funny moments in the first half-an-hour or so, this would have been right up there with Pixar's finest).
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The Pixar we all fell in love with is back!
David Maldonado20 June 2013
Monsters University is the best Pixar film since Toy Story 3 in 2010, and as good as Monsters Inc.

After Toy Story 3, Pixar Animation has been doing films that got short for the standards make by them. Cars 2 in 2011 didn't make it to the final round on the Academy Awards and Brave in 2012 won that year just because it was Pixar and they didn't receive the Oscar the year before, but the movie didn't have anything special. So, after the good streak of Wall-E, Up and Toy Story 3, Pixar fell way too low, buy this summer they have raise up and brought the perfect family movie of 2013 (by far).

Even thou we are seeing some of the old characters like (obviously), Mike, Sully, Randall and even George Sanderson (the monsters that is shaved for the 3312 alert), this movie feels different from its predecessor/sequel. What Monsters Inc. gain in sweetness with the Boo's character, this one compensates it with laughs. Since Finding Nemo in 2003, Pixar films has lost a little laughs, and introduced sweetness, but in University the smiles are back.

But it's not only about the laughs. The whole philosophy of the world is different. Inc. was about questioning the world they live in and everything they know about human kids. In University, scaring a kid is a good thing and is what give value a monster. If a monster is not scary then, what kind of monster is it? So, those two simple things gave the movie a whole new and different vibe.

The story is pretty much what we have seen in the trailers, but funnier. However, there are some unexpected twists that make it a even more solid film. So, we are safe to say that you haven't seen it all, even if you have seen every single trailer and clip in the internet. The ending is great, odd coming from Pixar, it works perfectly to the story when you think about it and don't make room for any sequel to the prequel, because it closes every gap.

It would be a cliché to say that the animation is amazing. This is Pixar that we're talking about. All the details on hair, scales, skin and even feathers are stunning. Even better than that is the animation on the characters expression. It is unbelievable. They don't have to say a word to send a message because with their faces they say it all. Sully could be an Academy Award winner, but what Mike does with one eye and a round body doesn't have a word to be described.

Some people will say that in Monsters Inc. Mike says to Sully, "You have been jealous of my looks since fourth grade". However, the characters first meet in college. Well, director Dan Scalon said that they actually thought about that and get to the conclusion that Mike said that as a common expression referring to a long time period and not literally that they have meet since 4th grade. The only problem is that to sustain that excuse they should have use it at least one time in this film. However, we never hear such a phrase to be told by Mike or any other character in the film. That will make those people think that Scalon only said that excuse to safe the story.

If you are human enough to ignore that stupid and insignificant expression, then you will enjoy Monsters University. You will laugh, the kids will love it and everyone will remember why they fell in love with Pixar and this particularly characters 12 years ago.
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Great prequel; somewhat a spoiler but not much.
Swive23 June 2013
Warning: Spoilers
I generally hate prequels. The suspense isn't there because you know the future and they are usually poorly made to boot.

This is an exception. We already like the characters and they made it exciting and somehow put in suspense. You really don't know how the whole thing will unfold and the end is not what you expect.

Generally, in this sort of movie, Mike and Sully would have triumphed, won the competition and become the stars of the school but they didn't follow this cliché and I liked that.

They showed that you can fail at one thing and still succeed. I enjoy this much more than most kids' movies.
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Not as good as everyone is saying
joshua kit11 October 2013
This film continues a downward trend at Pixar, whose movies have declined measurably in quality, especially since being purchased by Disney.

For a sequel, Monsters University makes an earnest effort, and is reasonably watchable. But there's not enough meat in the haphazard plot to really capture the viewer's imagination. The themes are childish and familiar.

Technically, the film looks good, as expected. The voice acting from Crystal and Goodman are as good as you would expect.

There's just not a lot else I can say about a sequel to a film which I always thought was a weaker entry in Pixar's catalog.
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Big hit, bigger miss.
Quietb-124 June 2013
Warning: Spoilers
It has been 12 years since John Goodman and Billy Crystal voiced the original star characters. You would think by now Pixar could have come up with a better story. The premise is in the title, the story is non existent.

Perhaps Mike doesn't see how bad this is because he is looking at it through one big eye. The 3D up charge is wasted on Mike and everyone else. The movie is long for a animated feature and it feels long and redundant with scare games, scare contests and scarcely anything happening.

The good news is it isn't very scary and got a "G" rating. The bad news is there isn't much there for the adult in the audience. It is not funny.

There is a message about cheating and consequences but it gives the impression so what if you are kicked out of college. So what if there is nothing to this prequel except a big box office.
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Doesn't hold a candle
Mr-Fusion14 February 2015
"Monsters University" has my vote for the most unnecessary prequel, story-wise at the very least. If Mike Wazowski is working at Monsters Inc. in the original movie, then this movie's ending is a foregone conclusion; he'll either triumph over adversity or find a loophole.

It's got a pretty good cast, but Charlie Day steals the movie easily (and it's not the first time). But it lacks the heart and soul of the original. Even Ratzenberger feels shoehorned in, and he's the studio's quirky Easter egg. It's not a weak effort because a lot of work went into this. But the story's deeply lacking.

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