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Pixar’s “Cars 2” tracking poorly on Rotten Tomatoes

By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: The number shocked me when I first saw it.

Pixar’s upcoming film, “Cars 2,” opens everywhere on June 24, and while most critics (myself included) aren’t allowed to post our reviews until opening day, several “lucky” publications are “allowed” to post early, meaning the film already has a Rotten Tomatoes grade.

It isn’t pretty.

As of right now, John Lasseter’s “Cars 2” has 52% Fresh with 21 reviews. By Pixar standards, that might as well be a zero. It’s so far off of the grades posted by previous Pixar films. Remember just a few months ago when we were in an uproar because three “Rotten” critics upset “Toy Story 3’s” 100% Fresh grade? How can the very next Pixar film be in the fifties?!

Why is this news? Films bomb all of the time. But Pixar generally crushes the Tomato Meter, with “WALL-E” (96%), “The Incredibles” (97%) and “Up” (98%) all posting monster grades. Does this mean Pixar could be looking at its first critical miss? Or will more positive reviews hit the Web as Friday approaches, pulling up what currently looks like Pixar’s first dour situation, from a review standpoint?

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About Sean O'Connell

Sean O'Connell is a nationally recognized film critic. His reviews have been published in print ('The Washington Post,' 'USA Today') and online (AMC FilmCritic.com, MSN's Citysearch) since 1996. He's a weekly contributor to several national radio programs. He is a longstanding member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA), the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS), and the Southeastern Film Critics View all articles by Sean O'Connell Association (SEFCA).

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  • June 22, 2011 | Permalink |

    The critics have had their knives out for “Cars 2” for a while now. First off, the subject of Pixar’s “first flop” is too hard for them to resist (never mind that many of us felt that other Pixar movies had fallen far short of perfection, notably “Monsters,” “Ratatouille,” and even the universally lauded “Up”). Second, many critics seem to be unable to separate their feelings about Larry the Cable Guy’s standup act from his voice work for Mater; poor Mater loses! Third, the merchandising success of “Cars” makes the “Pixar sells out” angle an irresistible hook for a lazy reviewer as well. Personally I loved the first “Cars,” I think Mater is the best comic sidekick this side of Puss and Donkey in the “Shrek” films, and all the clips I’ve seen of “Cars 2” have just made me more eager to see it. So — we’ll just to have to see for ourselves…

  • June 22, 2011 | Permalink |


    I don’t see how it could not be seen as a money making scheme because that what all movies are about. The main issue is that Pixar failed to deliver what people expect and has a weak story line and little legitimate claim to exist other than burn credibility for money. And if thats what they want then Pixar is burning their future as well.

    They used to put story first and create original content to earn well earned cash now they just want to milk the audience like every other company out there.

    Also cars 1 was remade after they realized how poorly it would be received and they did not seem to care or even went as far as implementing a review embargo to the release day to try and stem the tide of bad reviews. So I am happy that they are getting bad reviews as they seem to be aware of the bad quality and wanted to hide that fact for potential customers.

    You dont have to waste money to see for yourselves the story and context of cars 2 reeks of what you claim it is not.

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