The 14 Most Dangerous Mission: Impossible Stunts, Ranked Worst To Best

"Mission: Impossible" premiered on CBS in 1966 as an upside down "Topkapi" riff that left the conniving to the good guys. For creator Bruce Geller, expertise was the point. Characters and plots were left blank and blurry, forcing viewers to join the Impossible Missions Force or be left in the high-tech dust. Fun only got in the way; Geller famously scolded star Peter Graves for smiling at the end of an episode. In 1996, director Brian De Palma reinvented the series as a star vehicle for Tom Cruise, and it's nothing but fun. The second film even includes a joke about how its star can't... The post The 14 most dangerous Mission: Impossible stunts, ranked worst to best appeared first on /Film.

The 14 Most Dangerous Mission: Impossible Stunts, Ranked Worst To Best

"Mission: Impossible" premiered on CBS in 1966 as an upside down "Topkapi" riff that left the conniving to the good guys. For creator Bruce Geller, expertise was the point. Characters and plots were left blank and blurry, forcing viewers to join the Impossible Missions Force or be left in the high-tech dust. Fun only got in the way; Geller famously scolded star Peter Graves for smiling at the end of an episode.

In 1996, director Brian De Palma reinvented the series as a star vehicle for Tom Cruise, and it's nothing but fun. The second film even includes a joke about how its star can't stop smiling. The fuse burns brighter than ever and expertise remains the native tongue, but "Mission: Impossible" has carved a new legacy in theaters -- mainly, its reputation for showing off knuckle-whitening, insurance-defying stunts, often performed by Cruise himself. Factoring in franchise importance and danger inherent, the following 14 examples are the best stunts "Mission: Impossible" has to offer.

Aquarium Explosion — Mission: Impossible

The bottom of the list is also the beginning, when Tom Cruise became an action hero and Ethan Hunt became Ethan Hunt. Before he can process the death of his IMF team, Hunt is politely accused of betraying the entire organization. He decides that the only way through is out and, in what will soon become a tradition, goes rogue. All it takes to make his escape is one well-placed stick of explosive chewing gum and 16 tons of aquarium water. Director Brian De Palma savors the subsequent wave in luscious slow-motion, letting the audience get a good, long look at his star.

The stunt's provenance is still in question, with some sources claiming that Cruise volunteered to do the stunt himself, while others say De Palma volunteered him. Regardless, minus a face-replaced stuntman take in which the falling glass gave a better performance, it's really Tom Cruise in the line of fire. The scope of this scene may seem quaint now, but it's still an impressive spectacle, made historic with age. Cruise's first big "Mission: Impossible" stunt, in his first film as producer, lit a fuse longer than anyone could've possibly imagined in 1996, and remains among his best.

Parking Garage Parkour — Ghost Protocol

The Burj Khalifa sequence in "Ghost Protocol" was so tantalizing that it dominated the movie's ad campaign and so iconic that it drowns out the rest of the movie in memory. Of all the setpieces that suffer by immediate proximity to the scene, none fare worse than the climactic parking garage fight.

The location, inspired by Volkswagen's original "auto silos," is an oversized Hot Wheels playset invaded by action figures. Due to the impracticality of using a real auto silo, the production built its own working facsimile in a Vancouver warehouse.

There is no standout moment in the scene -- even Cruise's three-story jump between moving platforms is just another bruise in a symphony of them -- but the overall effect is dizzying. Cruise has more than proven his mettle in the star-as-stuntman pantheon, but this is the only sequence in the series that could be transplanted wholesale into a Jackie Chan film. On a list of the greatest fights, not stunts, the scene's Rubik's Cube geography and lockstep timing would make this one rate higher, but the brawl is still a dark horse in this crowded stunt race.

Arc De Triomphe Runaround — Fallout

Like the parking garage fight in "Ghost Protocol," the Arc de Triomphe motorcycle chase in "Fallout" is a great sequence rendered merely good by more impressive stunts nearby.

It's low on the relative risk scale, the stakes being no more exotic than a head-on collision. Still, there's a bone-deep anxiety to watching somebody speed against traffic. Some of the greatest chases in cinema history are built on little more. What elevates this example, though, is how returning director Christopher McQuarrie shoots it. Or, rather, when.

Given that the Arc marks the intersection of twelve major streets, the city of Paris was none-too-pleased about diverting traffic. The production got two hours to film. Minus camera setup, stunt driver choreography, and roundabout rehearsal, that translated to a 15-minute window of actual filming. Thankfully, that was all the time McQuarrie needed. The results, as agonizing as they are effortless, speak for themselves.

Underwater Heist — Rogue Nation

Faced with the unenviable task of following "Ghost Protocol," instead of looking up, McQuarrie looked down.

All Hunt has to do is swap a computer chip with an IMF-tampered copy to allow Benji (Simon Pegg) safe passage through a cutting-edge security system. Unfortunately, the storage unit for these chips is completely submerged and constantly scanned for unexpected metals. As a result, the only gadgets allowed are Hunt's own lungs.

The one-take sequence is so daring, so blatantly self-destructive, that the effort almost does the effect a disservice. If not for the press surrounding this scene, the average viewer would never even consider that Cruise was capable of it. But he is, and he spent two months training for it with co-star Rebecca Ferguson, then two weeks shooting it. In the end, Cruise spent a sustained six minutes underwater on a single breath. His dedication was enough to scare stunt coordinator Wade Eastwood.

Train Chase — Mission: Impossible

The ending of the original "Mission: Impossible" gets a bad rap, even from the people who made it. Brian De Palma wanted to film a train before there was a scripted reason for it. Cruise agreed, until the train sequence became a train-and-helicopter sequence. It was too far for what he considered a reasonably grounded cloak-and-dagger story. And yet, De Palma stood firm, even in the face of arguments from effects supervisor John Knoll about the laws of physics.

For all its scientific faults, the sequence hasn't lost a step. The combination of miniatures, blue screen inserts, and projection-mapped location footage was a high-water mark for a kind of action scene not long for the world in 1996. Anyone squeamish about dated effects need only watch the 140-mph wind machines beat Tom Cruise back to puberty.

The biggest stunt was Cruise's baptism by fire. There was no clearer way to show the star being flung from an exploding helicopter to a speeding train than by strapping him in a harness and throwing him until he landed right. After many takes, most of which he requested, Cruise was bruised and bleeding. The only way to satisfy Cruise's frustrations about realism was to do it for real, whatever the bodily cost. He hasn't been the same since.

Knife Trick — M:I-2

"Mission: Impossible" may be synonymous with spectacle now, but the franchise's most uncomfortable stunt comes from a much simpler time -- the year 2000 -- and a much smaller effect: an ordinary boot knife.

All the action in John Woo's maximalist "M:I-2" was choregraphed down to the doves, but Woo remained flexible on set. During the mano-a-mano finale, Cruise came up with an additional flourish: a knife-first dive from the villainous Sean Ambrose (Dougray Scott) that would land within an inch of Hunt's retina. As usual, Woo tried to talk his producer-star down. There was no time to fake it, and no money to hand it off to the effects department. Cruise countered that they didn't need to fake it at all.

A real knife was hastily tethered to an overhead bar, allowing the attacker to hang their full weight on the hilt and let it fall no further than measured. The resulting shot, with the blade shaking no more than a knuckle-length away from Cruise's unblinking eye, made the entire crew squirm. The stunt endures 20 years and four sequels later as, millimeter for millimeter, the most immediate danger Tom Cruise has ever faced, as well as a sick reminder that even the small stuff can be worth sweating.

Leaning Into The Skid — Rogue Nation

Of the franchise's three motorcycle chases, the mountainside pursuit in "Rogue Nation" pales by comparison. It doesn't have the dueling Triumphs of "M:I-2" or the postcard obstacle course of "Fallout." What it does have, however, is blistering, nauseating speed.

Immediately after surviving a car crash, Ethan Hunt crawls out of the wreckage and onto a BMW S 1000 RR. In motion, it's a redline ballet, the machines evolving into earthbound speeder bikes on loan from "Return of the Jedi." The striking purity of this sequence, especially compared to the shaggier scrapes around it, is by early design. Here, the bikes came first.

Inspired by "Ghost Protocol" stunt coordinator Greg Smrz's desire to do "a real motorcycle movie," McQuarrie and Cruise brought him back as the second unit director and shaped the entire story around this chase. Camera cars, usually limited to a top speed of 25 miles per hour, were tricked out to keep pace with the bikes at 100. "Rogue Nation" opens with a faster stunt, but due to that craftsmanship, this smokes it on the starting line and makes the simplest case yet for the franchise's modern appeal: when Tom Cruise self-consciously checks his knee after it grazes asphalt somewhere near Mach 1, that's what "Mission: Impossible" is all about.

HALO Jump — Fallout

Art is getting as indistinguishable from life as one of the IMF's peelable disguises. The line between Hunt and Cruise has been blurry for a while now, but each superlative stunt takes a bigger team of highly trained experts, working in perfect communion, to pull off. No set piece better demonstrates this spy-worthy prep and execution than the HALO jump.

At 25,000 feet in the air and 225 miles per hour, it would've been a risky maneuver even if Cruise didn't have a broken ankle. In addition, because shooting practically at that altitude was unprecedented, the stunt was pushed to the end of production -- McQuarrie had no way of knowing how long it might take to get the three necessary shots in the can. Every day for weeks on end, the director would break away from editing the rest of the film to review footage from the day's rehearsal jumps, then fly up with the crew at dusk to call action. All in all, it took 106 jumps to complete the sequence and another three months in post-production to paint Paris beneath it, all for two minutes of a 147-minute film. Mission, somehow, accomplished.

Hanging Out — Rogue Nation

By contrast, the first stunt of McQuarrie's "Mission: Impossible" run was a walk in the park. It only took eight flights to get the necessary footage, though none were nearly as comfortable for Cruise.

There's a beautiful simplicity to strapping a movie star to the fuselage of an Airbus 400 and rolling camera, but only over popcorn. The crew painstakingly cleaned the entire runway of objects; at 185 miles per hour, even acorns are lethal. Any precipitation at all was a non-starter. Cruise wore protective contacts as insurance. Though he claimed he lost sleep in a featurette detailing the production of the stunt, he still insisted on keeping his harness slack to make his performance authentic. 

It was impressive moment in the trailers and downright astounding in context; Cruise lands on the wing of the Airbus within three minutes of the Paramount logo appearing on screen. Christopher McQuarrie made his entrance to the franchise in assured style by doing the impossible: putting the big bang before the fuse.

Shockwave — Mission: Impossible III

Tom Cruise getting thrown into the side of a Dodge Stratus is more than just wirework; it's sooth.

The stakes in "Mission: Impossible III" remain, to date, the most personal in the franchise. That focus extended to the stunts. To Abrams's credit, "Mission: Impossible III" was the first "Mission" to recognize that Tom Cruise running as a special effect unto itself. During one of these sprints -- this time, escaping from a strafing drone -- a missile hits close enough to send Ethan flying. The stunt only lasts two seconds from take-off to landing, and spans the height of a car door, yet it became a touchstone for the franchise.

The effect was pieced together from six different shots, only two of which included Cruise, and a healthy smear of digital dirt, then was given the famous Abrams shake after the fact. All that invisible work came together to craft the film's mission statement in miniature: Hunt is unstoppable, maybe even indestructible, but he's also human. He still is, even if the explosions have gotten bigger and the falls a lot farther as the franchise has continued.

Cliffhanger — M:I-2

To make up for lost time caused by delays in filming Stanley Kubrick's "Eyes Wide Shut," "M:I-2" hits the ground running as a treatise on the inhuman cool of America's would-be Bond. Hunt is reintroduced spending his vacation doing something even more dangerous than his day job. By the power of his own hands, feet, and, briefly, knees, Hunt scales the mile-high crags of Moab, Utah. After a misjudged jump, he turns himself around and hangs, Christlike, above all creation.

Minus a digitally erased-safety harness and his slide off the edge, it's all Cruise. Woo was too terrified to watch the seven takes as they happened. The producer-star refused to share any footage of the stunt until they wrapped, lest anyone at the studio try to pull the plug. The peril, paranoia, and torn shoulder were worth it -- the stunt not only became the film's signature, but pop-culture shorthand in spoofs everywhere from the "2000 MTV Movie Awards" to "Austin Powers: Goldmember." The ego that made the sequence such a popular target at the time has aged into awe -- and Cruise into an endangered species.

Dueling Helicopters — Fallout

In a gauntlet of stunts either tediously captured (the HALO jump) or wincingly performed (Arc de Triomphe), the helicopter finale in "Fallout" bests both the movie's crown jewels.

It was shot over six weeks in three different countries. During prep, Cruise condensed three months of helicopter training into one. On set, he was nursing a broken ankle and still had the HALO shoot ahead of him. Custom cameras were fitted all over the aircraft, inside and out, and McQuarrie directed by walkie-talkie. Henry Cavill, playing Hunt's villainous quarry, was strapped into the fleeing helicopter, effectively placing the lives of not one but two movie stars in the hands of Cruise, which were already shivering from the sub-freezing temperatures.

The result is documentary, or as close as "Mission: Impossible gets." There he is. There he goes. The price of a mistake for both Ethan and Tom is never less than equal -- swift, fiery death -- and never less than obvious. With a little imagination and barroom piano, it passes for something that Buster Keaton might've done with $178 million and the right license; for all the technical wizardry on display, there's no bigger gasp in the franchise than when Tom Cruise slips off the skid and just barely catches the cargo net below.

Burj Khalifa — Ghost Protocol

After "Mission: Impossible III" turned in the lowest box office take of any film in the franchise, a fourth "Mission" was anything but guaranteed. When -- or if -- the series returned, Hunt would have to prove himself to moviegoers all over again. The first trailer for "Ghost Protocol" underlined the action and ended with a 2,722-foot exclamation point: Tom Cruise swinging around the tallest building in the world like a plastic army man on a shoestring. There's not only a close-up to guarantee that it's him, but a frustrated retort at Jeremy Renner -- "You're not helping."

When Brad Bird started filming, "Ghost Protocol" was a baton-pass. Ethan Hunt's return was supposed to be his retirement from field work, replacing the assassinated Secretary (Tom Wilkinson) as head of the IMF. Renner's character, William Brandt, was going to be the new face of the franchise. Then, 10 weeks into production, Cruise brought in trusted collaborator Christopher McQuarrie for a rewrite. Changing only the pieces yet to be shot, including the interior half of the Burj Khalifa climb, McQuarrie overhauled the entire second half of the film. There would be no desk job for Ethan Hunt.

Brad Bird's die-cut eye for action, honed over decades in animation, reinvigorated the franchise and challenged it to a game of one-upmanship that audiences are still winning 10 years later. Even if McQuarrie hadn't taken the wheel, the Burj Khalifa stunt speaks for itself and would've made Hunt's promotion all the stranger. This is clearly the dawn of Tom Cruise, stunt man, not the twilight.

CIA Infiltration — Mission: Impossible

15 years before "Ghost Protocol" revised the "Mission: Impossible" blueprint, Brian De Palma and screenwriter David Koepp sketched it out in a tall, octagonal room with nothing more than a computer, a light-up floor nicked from the "Billie Jean" music video, and near-complete silence. 

Ethan Hunt's makeshift IMF team must break into the CIA Headquarters at Langley and steal the hallowed NOC List. Unfortunately, it's stored in an ultra-secure computer terminal surrounded by pressure-sensitive tiles, among other absurd countermeasures. Seeing no other option, Hunt rappels from the lone vent overhead. The compounding distractions -- a curious rat, an inconsistent stomach, sweat 00 ratchet along like clockwork. Nobody builds Swiss watches like De Palma. The crescendo, though, is all flesh and blood. Krieger (Jean Reno) drops Hunt's line and only catches it again when the spy is centimeters from the floor.

During filming, Cruise kept faceplanting. The fall wasn't far, but the harness was imbalanced and the sustained exertion of trying to catch himself was adding up. De Palma called it. He'd just cut before impact to a close-up. Cruise asked the director for one more take and the crew for pocket change. With pound notes in his shoes, Cruise fell for the last time and nailed the stunt for all three rolling cameras. His marionette flail is the greatest thrill in a film constructed of nothing else. The sequence is a peerless translation and expansion of the original show's mission to create suspense through hyper-competence. This stunt, within just a few feet, summarizes everything essential about "Mission: Impossible" -- disbelief, suspended.

The post The 14 most dangerous Mission: Impossible stunts, ranked worst to best appeared first on /Film.

Source : Slash Film More   

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Pixar Supporting Characters Who Deserve Their Own Movie

In the house of Pixar, character is key. For over 25 years, the most reliable studio in animation has dazzled and devastated audiences with its profound understanding of character-driven storytelling. No one would care about these talking toys, blue-collar monsters, or middle-aged superheroes if they weren't full of motivation, depth, and thematic growth. We don't love Buzz Lightyear because he looks cool and has a famous catchphrase; we love him because he dwells in existential misery before learning to accept his identity as a child's plaything, teaching all of us that it's okay if it takes a while to discover who you truly are. But the... The post Pixar Supporting Characters Who Deserve Their Own Movie appeared first on /Film.

Pixar Supporting Characters Who Deserve Their Own Movie

In the house of Pixar, character is key. For over 25 years, the most reliable studio in animation has dazzled and devastated audiences with its profound understanding of character-driven storytelling. No one would care about these talking toys, blue-collar monsters, or middle-aged superheroes if they weren't full of motivation, depth, and thematic growth. We don't love Buzz Lightyear because he looks cool and has a famous catchphrase; we love him because he dwells in existential misery before learning to accept his identity as a child's plaything, teaching all of us that it's okay if it takes a while to discover who you truly are.

But the leads aren't the only compelling parts of a Pixar joint. Each one of the studio's imaginative films is bursting with memorable and lovable characters, some of whom are so well-developed that they could easily take the spotlight and carry a story all of their own. Whether they're old favorites or forgotten players, all of the following Pixar characters have protagonist potential.

Jessie

Despite her plasticine origins, Jessie is one of the most authentically human characters on Pixar's roster. Behind her fiery spirit and her signature "YAY-haw!" lies a lot of trauma, including a crippling fear of abandonment and a bad case of claustrophobia. After years of brilliant characterization (and a starring role in the 2013 TV special "Toy Story of Terror!"), Jessie has proven that she has enough depth and room for growth to substantiate a feature-length adventure. But it won't be easy; turning Jessie's post-traumatic stress into a bog-standard character arc would be incredibly childish and more than a little insensitive.

Instead, Pixar could take a more nuanced (and controversial) route by re-introducing Emily, the girl who originally abandoned the lovable cowgirl. Jessie would bear witness to a much different Emily than the little girl she loved so much. Rather than "getting over" her trauma, Jessie would learn a much more painful lesson: Even though the person who once left her behind returns, her baggage doesn't just magically disappear. Jessie would come to understand that the version of the loved ones we keep in our memories no longer exist, and may never again - it's that special "Toy Story" flavor of utter emotional devastation.

Derek Knight

"Monsters University" took audiences back in time to the titular academy and, in depicting the rivalry-turned-friendship between Mike and Sully, recontextualized scaring children as not simply an occupation but an art form. The craft has enough social and educational clout to merit a prestigious and highly competitive college program. What Pixar may not have intended, however, is how the college prequel put a "freshman 15" on the original film's ending. The events of "Monsters, Inc." resulted in a complete upheaval of the "Monsters" world. Scaring as a source of renewable energy was out, and making kids laugh was in -- but what does that mean for a world in which frightening children was so revered?

Enter Derek Knight, an esteemed professor at Monster University's scare program and one of the many monsters that "Monsters, Inc." rendered unnecessary overnight. In his own show, Professor Knight could navigate a changed Monstropolis, grappling with an enemy that strikes fear into the hearts of even the most terrifying employees at Monsters, Inc.: obsolescence. Knight's journey for a renewed purpose would fit nicely with Pixar's existential themes and could provide a thoughtful meditation on the toxic tendencies behind cultural traditions. Besides, who'd ever object to a feature-length Alfred Molina performance?

Jack-Jack

Fittingly enough, one of Pixar's more underappreciated qualities is what goes unsaid in each of its films. Pete Docter and the gang don't just know what to say, but also what not to say, and as fun as fan theories can be (in moderation), we ultimately don't need to know why toys come to life or how the monsters are able to travel to the human world through closet doors. But what if prioritizing character over lore was part of a person's journey? A question feverishly debated among fans of "The Incredibles" is the indescribable power within Jack-Jack Parr, the youngest member of the super-family. He's teleported, duplicated himself, transformed into metal and monsters, and more. What kind of super is this kid, anyway?

A Jack-Jack film might take place many years after the previous two -- even as a teenager, no one can figure out the youngest Incredible's abilities. But instead of creating a character arc that would lead to a definitive answer, Jack's journey could instead meditate on the lack of one. Sometimes, the qualities and quirks that define a person can't be neatly categorized or pigeon-holed, and even though Jack feels pressured to define himself as a member of a world-renowned team, he must learn that he doesn't need to fully understand himself to accept who he is.

The T-Rex Family

It ain't easy being "The Good Dinosaur." Pixar's take on one of the most popular nerdy fixations ranks among the most disliked films in its catalog, thanks to a lightweight story and a distracting lack of originality. Even so, there is still fun to be had at Clawtooth Mountain. Aside from a few minor subplots, Pixar has never told a story about a father and his daughter. The T-Rex family that Arlo meets on his journey -- old man Butch and his daughter Ramsey, specifically -- provides a solid framework by which the studio could change that.

In our proposed feature, a dino from Butch's past ambushes the Longhorn ranch and mortally wounds Nash, sending a grieving Butch on a quest for revenge. Ramsey, shaken by her father's callousness, catches up to him and is quickly introduced to the parts of her father's life never told around a campfire. One of the biggest indicators of adulthood is being able to acknowledge that your parents had lives, history, and baggage long before they had children. Ramsey could face that rocky reality, while Butch would have to realize that opening up to his daughter is the only way he can keep his family together.

Gill And The Tank Gang

There are few Pixar characters done dirtier than Gill and "Tank Gang." Though Gill and his crew were supposed to be a prominent part of "Finding Dory," their subplot was cut and they were delegated to a paltry post-credits gag. Their absence was sorely felt throughout the movie. Justice must be served -- it's time for Pixar to answer Bloat's recurring question: "Now what?"

After escaping captivity (again) and reaching the ocean floor, Gill and the tank gang might travel the seas in search of a new home. It's a simple scenario, but the Pixar-style twist is that it doesn't end happily. As the fish cruise through the ocean, each member finds a place where they could prosper as individuals, but reject them to stay with the group in hopes that maybe, just maybe, they'll find a home that pleases everybody. Gill would ultimately realize that, as much as he loves his group of misfits, sometimes the right thing to do as a leader is to disband and say goodbye.

Sarge And Fillmore

A defining coming-of-age moment in the 21st century is realizing that most (but not all) Pixar stories are told with opposing pairs. Woody and Buzz. Marlin and Dory. Joy and Sadness. When heads butt, conflict comes naturally, breeding believable character development. One of Pixar's more obvious pairings is Lightning McQueen and Mater from 2006's "Cars"; one's a hotshot hotrod from the racing circuit, the other's a humble blue-collar worker in the boonies. 

Among the many faces Lightning meets in Radiator Springs, two gas-guzzling layabouts stand out: Sarge, a short-tempered jeep war veteran, and Fillmore, a free-loving '60s Volkswagen Type 2 who listens to Jimi Hendrix. Together, they embody the political divide of America in the late '60s, representing those who went to war in Vietnam and those who opposed it.

Though they were never integral to the movies that feature them, the counterculture and countermeasure cars have been known to clash over petty affairs. Pairing these two and giving them a shared goal would result in an enjoyable cross-country adventure, heavy on transparent political metaphor (another "Cars" staple). With their playful banter and bickering, Sarge and Fillmore could explore new parts of their wacky world and bring the essence of Emeryville's finest to the forefront.

Frozone

Lucius Best has always felt like the odd man out in the "Incredibles" series, a super man in blue surrounded by a family in red. In fact, it's arguable his most obvious function in the franchise is to remind audiences that Bob, Helen, Violet, Dash, and Jack-Jack aren't the only superheroes around. Though that's extremely limiting for one of Pixar's only Black characters, Frozone could also serve as an anchor to introduce the wider super community.

Frozone's tale might be a step back in time, taking place days before the passing of the Superhero Relocation Act outlawed supers. With their life's work on the line, Lucius and the greater community of supers attempt to do as much good as they can while they still retain legal standing, ensuring their absence is felt as little as possible. If the original "Incredibles" is "Watchmen" for kids, Frozone's film would be closer to a youth-oriented "The Big Short" -- what would you do if you knew your world was days away from falling apart? Frozone's tale would be about leaving a life behind while also serving as a spectacular showcase for the dozens of supers once adored by the public, including Gazerbeam, Dynaguy, and the Thrilling Three.

The Jerry Council

Pixar wasn't playing around when it finally decided to stop dancing around death in 2020. "Soul" didn't simply kill off main character Joe Gardner within the first 30 minutes of the movie, it brought him to a fully-realized (and deeply secular) version of Purgatory. Joe was introduced to the guardians of this pastel paradise, abstract beings of light who take on humanoid features and warm voices to interact with young souls on their way to Earth, as well as influential souls headed to the "Great Beyond." They all go by the same name: Jerry.

Pixar is frighteningly good at crafting rich, textured worlds, and the Great Before from "Soul" is no exception. A movie outlining its creation would be wholly unnecessary. What would make more sense would be a story exploring the motivations behind these ethereal escorts, either as a prequel set in a Great Beginning or a sequel featuring a whole new batch of characters. Why do the Jerrys choose to believe in humanity? Were they ambivalent in the past? If so, what changed their minds? The Jerrys' belief in people could be both challenged and reinforced in this abstract spinoff.

Boo

Between a scrapped sequel and a so-so streaming series, Disney has done its damndest to create the next chapter of 2001's "Monsters, Inc.," Pixar's first truly subversive work. By contrast, the animation studio was more successful in turning the clock backward with an excellent prequel, "Monsters University." What these productions all have in common is, ironically, a missing ingredient: the heart and soul of the original film, Boo. Though her guardians are the lovable faces of the franchise, Boo was the unassuming agent of chaos that brought Monstropolis to its knees -- like an adorable Steve Rogers, her very presence brought out the corruption buried beneath the monsters' world. 

But bringing Boo back for her own film wouldn't work if the goal was simply a walk down memory lane. Taking place decades after the fall of Henry J. Waternoose III, Boo's grand return to Monsters, Incorporated could depict her as a new mother, forced to venture back through the closet door after her toddler goes missing. With fresh adult eyes, Boo would finally come to understand the world she changed so many years before. But Boo wouldn't just accept the monstrous circumstances; after all, making children laugh to harvest energy doesn't necessarily change the professional relationship between monsters and children. Is the world of "Monsters, Inc." truly as symbiotic as it seems? The first adult human to discover Monstropolis would likely have some heated words for her "Kitty."

Bo Peep

Pixar's toybox is absolutely bursting with well-developed characters, but none have grown and changed as profoundly as Bo Peep from "Toy Story." Once merely a passive voice of reason (and Woody's girlfriend), little Bo stood on the sidelines during the first two films before taking a sabbatical for round three. Though she was sorely missed during the toys' move to Bonnie's room (and the many mini-adventures that came after), the "Toy Story" icon made a big comeback in 2019's "Toy Story 4" as a hero to the lost and abandoned playthings of her RV park domain.

Bo's role as a fiery do-gooder felt like a calculated move on Pixar's part to pitch audiences on a new action hero, and though she may not have taken off as her own character after the film's mega-success, she still made enough of an impression to earn her own animated short, "Lamp Life," which chronicled the life and times of the lady light's journey across the world. Charming as it was, the short frustratingly filled in the gaps that could've been saved for a feature-length vehicle, relegating her growth to cute gags instead of real character development. With nowhere to go but forward, Bo's adventures on her own would be a refreshing deviation from such a storied franchise.

Read this next: Upcoming Pixar Movies To Keep On Your Radar

The post Pixar Supporting Characters Who Deserve Their Own Movie appeared first on /Film.

Source : Slash Film More   

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