This collection of PIXAR shorts (including their initial LucasFilm releases) includes a little film on the company’s beginnings. But that story is best told simply by watching the technical & artistic leaps in the DVD’s first five digital animations: ADVENTURES OF ANDRÉ AND WALLY B./’84; LUXO JR./’86; RED’S DREAM/’87; TIN TOY/’88 and KNICK KNACK/’89. Prep work for their first feature (TOY STORY/’95), these giant, baby-steps may look simple, even primitive (that baby in TIN TOY is one scary looking toddler), yet are remarkably lovely in their limited fashion. (No surprise really, so were/are the very first films ever projected from back in 1895.) The other titles come from shorts tacked onto later feature releases, up to the marvelous LIFTED/’06. The outlier here is MATER AND THE GHOSTLIGHT/’06, a second helping from CARS/’06, one of the few indifferently received PIXAR releases. It gets special treatment as pet project of company head John Lasseter who thinks he can flog it into a critical as well as a commercial success. And he probably can; it’s his very own ATTENTION MUST BE PAID property.
DOUBLE-BILL: More goodies, if less historical interest, in PIXAR SHORT FILMS: Collection 2/’12.