So, apparently, I am the last person on Earth to see this movie.  It’s fun.  But rather than review it, I kind of want to pick it apart.  First, a brief review.

Monsters Inc. is a Pixar animate movie about the world of monsters.  The premise is, in Monster World, the monsters can travel through door portals into the closets of children to scare them at night.  The reason they do is is to collect their screams, which are converted to energy to power the monster city.  Unfortunately, children are becoming less and less frightened and the story centers around how a group of evil monsters are going to do something worse to children to get the power, while two good monsters have to save a little girl that gets trapped in their world.

Despite what I’m going to say, I genuinely like the performances and the movie.  It’s paced well, has a great sound track and some solid laughs.

Okay, spoilers ahead.

So first, there’s the business of Monsters Inc. within the movie.  The monsters live in the city and there are a few other businesses like the cafe and the produce stand, but that’s about it.  Monsters Inc seems to be the only big business in town.  The problem with that is that businesses usually have competition or a competing alternative.  Part of the plot hinges on the fact that Monsters Inc. is in trouble and may be shut down, but it seems to be the only source of power for the monster city.  Doesn’t seem plausible that other monsters would allow the shut down of Monsters Inc. without a viable alternative energy source.

The system is also flawed.  The factory brings in doors, which are then hooked into a machine that’s clearly powered.  It is well-established that when the doors are opened without power, they’re just doors hanging on a frame.  But when the power is on, the door opens from the closet of a young child.  The monsters’ source of power is the screams of young children, which they can only harvest through these doors and using their machines.  Therefore, how did all this start?  If the monsters needed power to use the doors, but they get power from the other side of the door, they must’ve needed or obtained power somehow to get started.

And it’s never established where the doors come from?  Do they appear?  Are they built?  This giant machine in the factory stores them all, but how did the company start because the implication is that they weren’t always there.

Now the children’s screams being converted to energy works in the movie.  I mean, they’re monsters, so that makes a certain amount of sense.  Except, not all the monsters travel to the human world to scare people.  Aren’t they all supposed to?  Only a select few are chosen to do it in the movie.  But there’s another monster they make reference to named “Ted”.  Ted is clearly Godzilla, so what’s his deal?  Is there were Godzilla lives?  How does he get back and forth to the real world then since he wouldn’t fit through a closet?

Again, I enjoyed the movie and the closets are a great excuse to have a chase at the end through various portals all over the world, but there is another big unanswered question.

The movie has a government agency called the CDA (Child Detection Agency).  They show up whenever there is contamination from a child.  The other monsters fear the CDA because they are an overbearing and overreacting organization.  My Libertarian sensibilities enjoyed that portrayal until the end.  (BIG SPOILER)  At the end of the movie, it’s revealed that Roz, the cranky office worker, is actually working undercover for the CDA and is it’s head.  Seems to not make sense because:

a) You don’t make the head of your organization actually go in and do something, otherwise, who runs things while she’s on a mission?  Being in charge means you send people on missions.

b)  The monsters are deathly afraid of human children and contamination.  They mistakenly believe the children are powerful and will kill them, but it’s never explained why they believe this.

In the end, Roz let’s the child go, but there’s no indication that she or any of the rest of the CDA have changed their minds about whether or not children pose a threat.  Only the main characters, Sully and Mike, have been with the kid long enough.

Finally, when Sully takes over Monsters Inc. at the end, the monsters change to making the children laugh to generate more power.  But wouldn’t that mean that children all over the world never fear their closet monster again?  Wouldn’t they come to love the visits at night, rather than be fearful of them?  Wouldn’t that greatly change the landscape of the world?

I can now see why Pixar never did a sequel.  The scripting would be very problematic if they tried to include the original little girl in the plot again.  I think that by Sully changing the company to one where the monsters make the children laugh would make it very tough to do a compelling sequel.  Sully’s change from “Scarer” to monster that helps children laugh undermines the entire concept of monsters with regard to kids.

Another out-of-place bit was when the produce monster guy turns out to be an Italian stereotype.  It’s weird.  Other than Mike mentioning his “Trojan Horse plan” as “too Greek”, there’s no other mention of nationalities I remember.  Why would their be an Italian monster and no other?  Seems weird, especially for a children’s movie.

Anyhow, that’s just me nitpicking.  See this movie if you haven’t yet, bros.