Thursday, May 26, 2011

Dead Parent Movie Escalation

When my daughter was younger, my wife and I would joke about most movies for the kids being "dead parent" movies.  Most of these would have at least one parent of the featured character killed on or off screen.  This, of course, starts with Bambi.  Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, and all of the rest of the new Disney classics had dead parents.  So, we have come to wonder if Andy in the Toy Story series has a father or a second mother or what?

I forget all of the discussions we used to have about these as our teenage daughter is less interested in animated flicks these days.  The interest now is in Pirates of the Caribbean, which, now that I think of it, is also a dead parent movie, with both Kiera Knightley's character and Orlando Bloom's having at least one missing parent, right?

I guess getting rid of the parents allows us to focus on the child in the movie with which the children in the audience can empathize.  Anyhow, the inspiration of this post is the new escalation as seen in SPOILER ....

Kung Fu Panda 2.  In the new movie, it is not just that our favorite Panda lost a parent (or is adopted), but that his entire kind has been more or less wiped out.  Panda-cide is apparently a key part of the movie.  So, a kid's movie has genocide as a plot.  Um, is this ok?  I will not be seeing the movie--having an older kid means that we only see non-Cars Pixar movies on a regular basis.*  So, we will not be seeing KFP2.  But if any of my readers do, let me know what you think of the genocide movie for kids.
* And, yes, Pixar movies are far darker than folks often think.  Up was incredibly dark if you think of a hero who kills all potential competitors to his fame.  Wall-E: planet destroyed, people get overweight and feeble, but it is all ok because the robots fall in love.

1 comment:

Nick said...

That reminds me that Wall-E would have been an even better movie if Wall-E didn't regain his memories at the end. Having Eve still care for him and nurture the gradual development of his replacement mind would be nice, touching, and sad.