Dialogue, dualogue…

We only get the major blockbuster US movies here in Busan, which means we get a lot of crap. But it also means we get all the big animated films, which are most definitely not crap. Kung-fu Panda, for example, was not only a laugh-out-loud riot, it was also beautifully made.

The new Pixar movie, Wall-E, sounds really interesting. In particular, I was intrigued by this little bit about the approach to dialogue:

Throughout the film, the lead characters, and most of the robots they encounter, utter not a single word of traditional dialogue. (There is ooooing, eeeping and beeping.) It’s yet another variation from previous Pixar films in which toys, rats, fish and bugs all have talked – and talked smart.

Still, Stanton says, “there’s dialogue from Frame One. It’s just unconventional dialogue.

“I knew this was a big bite to chew, and it had been a long, long time since someone tried to do a film with this unconventional dialogue in it. I kept saying, ‘It’s like I’m trying to do R2-D2 the Movie.’ I kept using that phrase so many times that one of my producers said, ‘Why don’t you just call Ben Burtt,’ ” the legendary audio and sound man who was the “voice” of R2-D2.

“So I called him and asked him if he could sign on early and help me with dialogue for these characters and grammar for each of the characters,” Stanton says.

“Now that I’m on the back end of working with him for two years, I realize that was the smartest move I ever made. I got 25 years of knowledge of how to do this stuff. He’s just the master of it, and I don’t think I could solved [sic] it without him.”

I’ve been waiting for something like this. Movies tend to “talk” very fast and too much, but I’m always fascinated by those that strip away the need to explain everything. A film like The New World, for example, is a great love story even though the main characters barely speak to each other. Another is Triplets of Belleville. What little language it has is unnecessary. This requires a filmmaker to be more creative in storytelling.

And of course, the other reason I like films without little or no dialogue is that I have more examples I can show in class.

Edit (June 24): Here’s the trailer… looks and sounds great!


One Response to “Dialogue, dualogue…”

  1. worth sharing…:)

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