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Monsters University

  G HD Closed Captioning

Pixar

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Plot Summary

Disney•Pixar proudly presents the hilarious story of how two mismatched monsters met and became lifelong friends in a movie screaming with laughter and oozing with heart. Ever since college-bound Mike Wazowski (Billy Crystal) was a little monster, he’s dreamed of becoming a Scarer—and he knows better than anyone that the best Scarers come from Monsters University (MU). But during his first semester at MU, Mike’s plans are derailed when he crosses paths with hotshot James P. Sullivan, “Sulley” (John Goodman), a natural-born Scarer. The pair’s out-of-control competitive spirit gets them both kicked out of the University’s elite Scare Program. With their dreams temporarily dashed, they realize they will have to work together, along with an odd bunch of misfit monsters, if they ever hope to make things right.

Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews

TOMATOMETER

78%
  • Reviews Counted: 183
  • Fresh: 143
  • Rotten: 40
  • Average Rating: 6.8/10

Top Critics' Reviews

Rotten: What hasn't advanced is the plotting, which was nothing special last time and is so formulaic now that it's basically surprise-free. – Bob Mondello, NPR, Jun 21, 2013

Fresh: [It] is true to the spirit of the original film, "Monsters Inc.", and matches its tone. But it never seems content to turn over old ground. – Matt Zoller Seitz, Chicago Sun-Times, Jun 21, 2013

Fresh: Although it falls short of the best Pixar has brought to the screen over its long association with Disney, it's nevertheless worth a trip to the theater, especially for kids. – James Berardinelli, ReelViews, Jun 21, 2013

Fresh: Monsters University is cute, and funny, and the animation, though not exactly inspired, is certainly colorful. – Steven Rea, Philadelphia Inquirer, Jun 21, 2013

Read More About This Movie On Rotten Tomatoes

Customer Reviews

A Monstrous Good Time!

The people at Pixar may have lost a step or two creatively over the past few years with flicks like "Cars 2" and "Brave," but at least they still have the ability to tell richly engaging stories with unforgettable characters thanks to the two key ingredients found in all their films: humor and heart. And the fact that "Monsters University" - the studio's first-ever prequel - manages to pack in all of those qualities (and then some) into its nicely swift run time makes it an amusing and amiable treat for old and young alike. I gotta say, seeing Mike and Sulley for the first time in twelve years gave me a great nostalgic feeling I hadn't felt since watching "Toy Story 3" on opening day. Billy Crystal and John Goodman bring so much fun energy and life to the main characters that you'd hardly believe they ever left the recording studio during all that time. Even more entertaining than their flawless comedic chemistry is getting to see just how Mike and Sulley actually met and eventually became the best of friends. Sure, this story isn't really the strongest we've seen from Pixar (it's basically a semi-predictable, college-themed "underdog" tale with some clever sight gags thrown in), but it does get a lot better once our heroes unexpectedly find themselves trapped in the human world. At that point, the film reaches a genuinely emotional and thrilling climax that reflects just how good Pixar's storytelling can be (even if the previous half of the plot doesn't hold up quite as well as it could have). But I digress. As for the characters, I'd probably say they're my favorite aspect of this movie. They're all so uniquely designed and consistently interesting that it's a shame we don't get to know more about their personalities. Even so, at least we get to see some very familiar faces from the first film (Roz, Randall, etc.) that help foreshadow the future for Mike and Sulley, so that's pretty cool. Anyway, "Monsters University," despite its story-related flaws at times, is still a hilarious, heartwarming, and enjoyably fun adventure for the entire family. It may not be Pixar's finest, but it's well worth your time.

NOT PIXAR'S BEST, BUT STILL A CLEVER AND FUN PREQUEL!

When I heard the news that Pixar would be making a prequel to their 2001 hit animated film "Monsters, Inc.," I was pretty excited to say the least. As an obsessive Pixar fan since a very young age, I practically grew up with the movie and all its hilarious characters, so getting to revisit the fun world of Monstropolis once again was just the icing on the cake. My only concern was whether or not the filmmakers would be able to recapture the great comic charisma and heartwarming magic of the original. And I'm happy to say that, for the most part, they really succeeded. "Monsters University" is an inventive, hilarious, and wonderfully charming adventure that actually adds some surprising depth to our main heroes. And while it doesn't quite scale the same heights as the studio's finest efforts, it's still a briskly entertaining romp all the way through.

Ever since Mike Wazowski (Billy Crystal) was a little monster, he's only dreamed of becoming a Scarer - and he knows better than anyone else that all the biggest and best Scarers come from none other than Monsters University. But during his first semester, Mike's plans for success are derailed when he crosses paths with hotshot James P. "Sulley" Sullivan (John Goodman), a natural-born Scarer who simply relies on pure physical strength alone. From the moment these two mismatched monsters meet, it's clear they can't stand each other. And pretty soon, their over-the-top competitive spirit gets them both kicked out of the University's elite Scare program. If they ever have a shot at getting back in, they'll have to work together along with an odd bunch of misfit monsters by competing in the college's annual Scare Games. Will our heroes succeed in the end?

By far, one of the best aspects of this flick is its wonderfully creative character and background designs. Each individual frame is full of so many fun, clever details, you might have to watch it more than once to catch them all. And of course, in true Pixar fashion, the animation is simply stunning. It's actually some of the best I've seen yet from the studio, which is saying a lot. As for the story, while it's certainly enjoyable and moves along at a nice pace, it's pretty predictable stuff for a Pixar flick. For most of the second half, this film basically revolves around a typical "lovable underdogs fighting the odds" plot with a monster-fied twist. Most of the sequences involving the main characters competing in scare-themed challenges are enjoyable, as are the hilarious interactions between Mike, Sulley, and the rest of their Oozma Kappa gang, but it isn't until the third act finally rolls in that things start to pick up speed. The thrilling climax the film builds up to doesn't disappoint. It even manages to make us sympathize with our main characters that much more in one genuinely touching scene. And while I certainly don't mind the fact that the filmmakers choose to spend most of the story just focusing on Mike and Sulley (this is their story, after all), it wouldn't have hurt if they had done more with some of the supporting characters, such as Helen Mirren's remarkably intimidating Dean Hardscrabble and Nathan Fillion's enjoyably snobby antagonist Johnny Worthington. But for the most part, the writers do a nice job at keeping each monster consistently fun and entertaining, even the ones in the background. And as an added bonus for those who've seen the original flick, quite a few familiar characters make brief appearances throughout this movie. So just make sure to keep an eye out for them. It's a pretty great nostalgic throwback.

Though its story lacks enough compelling originality to make it stand out from past Pixar features, "Monsters University" is still a visually astounding and thoroughly engaging treat for viewers of any age. True to the spirit of its predecessor, the movie treats its main characters, surprisingly enough, like actual humans, with both Crystal and Goodman adding even more personality and depth to Mike and Sulley than before. It also helps that their rapid-fire comic chemistry keeps the film running mostly on full speed, with just a few minor narrative speed bumps along the way. The animation is beautifully detailed, the clever sight and running gags are consistently amusing, and the script even manages to add in some surprising twists here and there. Sure, when compared to Pixar's previous films, this one is far from deep or groundbreaking. But then again, it's not supposed to be. At its very core, "MU" is a fun-spirited, good-natured, and genuinely heartwarming animated adventure for the kid (and adult) in all of us. If you fell in love with "Monsters, Inc.," there's a good chance you'll enjoy this imaginative prequel just as much. Even if you're not a Pixar fan, I still say it's worth your time. At the very least, give it a chance and see what you think.

OH EM GEE

Okay let me first start off by saying I'm 17, but I'm a total 5 year old when it comes to monsters inc movies. I honestly loved it. Nothing more to say xD

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