March 14, 2013
By And Large, the Corporation Consumed the Planet
Pixar’s Wall-E (2008), brilliantly directed by Andrew Stanton, is an incredibly smart, subtle, and multi-dimensional children’s film and social commentary set amidst a dystopian future of complete environment collapse. Both widely acclaimed and criticized, Wall-E is satirical take on the relationship between humanity, the Corporation, and nature. It is the story of humanity disconnected from its’ heritage and driven by instant gratification. Unchecked corporatism led down a path into a figurative self-induced technological coma where the surviving humans float adrift, on the brink of completely losing touch with their roots. It is a world where all corporations eventually merged into a universal super-monopoly called Buy ‘n Large Corporation. After all of the Earth’s remaining natural resources had been completely consumed in a frenzy of mass consumption, all that remained was essentially a planet-wide garbage dump. Unfazed by an apocalyptic global mass extinction event, the solution entailed contracting Buy ‘n Large Corporation assemble an armada of lavish corporate starships brimming with technology designed to quickly satisfy and entertain the whims and desires of their guests. The temporary solution, pitched as “custom vacations,” kept humanity preoccupied while the corporation attempted to rapidly restore the planet. Plagued by a short-term solution mindset, Buy ‘n Large’s fleet of Waste Allocation Load Lifter – Earth Class (WALL-E) robots were unable to complete the task, and subsequently fell into disrepair. Unable to face the true reality, centuries passed as the temporary became the permanent. Pixar’s imagination of the future still dominated by the pursuit of profit and infinite growth is an exercise in superlatives. The film satirizes modern capitalism in a humorous and at times ridiculous way. Satire consists of using humor, irony,...
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