Pete Docter has emerged, over the years, to be the best director to come out of the Pixar brain trust that brought the original Toy Story to screens in 1995. Monsters, Inc. was Docter’s first solo effort and, like Up and Inside Out after it, it’s very concept is an imagination coup in a company known for mind-blowing feats of imagination. Unlike Up and Inside Out, Monsters never entirely lives up to its central idea (and the less said about the sequel the better), but the film is still an extremely solid entry in Pixar’s very competitive library of classics.
All kids have a feeling that there’s a monster somewhere in their bedrooms. Docter uses this idea to form an entire society of monsters that live benignly off of the power generated by the screams of children. It’s such a fantastic idea, and no scene realizes it better than the climatic chase between Mike & Sully and Randall as they race to try to get Boo back to her bedroom door. The planet and reality hopping chase shows the full warehouse of doors and provides for the film’s best action (and some of its funniest moments).
3 thoughts on “My Favorite Scene: Monsters, Inc. (2001) “The Door Chase””
To me this movie is near perfect, except that it would have been better (maybe) if the design work had been darker, creepier, more Burtonesque (I once perused the “Art of…” book, and as with all movies, the conceptual art was a hundred times better than what ended up on screen). Anyway, a bit more of an edge would not have hurt, but then, Pixar was still in its initial stages back then. All I can say is that Billy Crystal gives one of his best performances, the premise is carried off in an ingenious and matter-of-fact way that allows you to accept it without question, the characters were startlingly expressive the first time you saw them, thier world is colorful and vibrant, Boo is adorable, and the door chase is up there with the greatest chases of all time. I’m talking the French Connection.
Man I love this movie.
I really enjoyed the movie and the chase sequence was the best. I did wonder though how doors in new buildings would get created in the monster world given we know destroying the door in the monster world closes the portal but we’re never told how they open new ones in new homes. That was probably not a thought we were supposed to have while watching but I couldn’t help but wonder.
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It’s all coming back to me. I went to see this film, almost 20 years ago, not for the film, but for the teaser trailer for AOTC that was attached to it (I think it was the teaser, and not the full trailer. It was a long time ago). I can’t believe there was a time when people did that. I actually miss those days, it was more special than going on the internet (the whole “accumulated knowledge of our species” thing outweighs the special feeling of going without the internet, tho). Back then, there was only A Bug’s Life and the Toy Story franchise, and I had not yet figured out the magnitude of Pixar. It would take Finding Nemo to hammer that home, but with Monsters Inc, and particularly this kaleidoscopic scene you’re highlighting, It was clear to me that something was brewing, and I was overjoyed by the movie, not just by the five iconic SW images accompanied by Darth Vader’s breathing.