I am not sure how many of you are familiar with Pixar's Ice Age movies. Each movie has a plot line, but through out them it keeps jumping over to this funny looking little ice age version of a squirrel named Scrat. These parts of the movie, while containing no dialog other than little noises that come from Scrat, tend to get the most smiles and laughs. Personally, I remember these parts more than the rest of the movie? Why? Because Scrat is so lovable and his plight (get the acorn) is so accessible. Despite the fact that it's not complex and the general plot doesn't change over the whole series of movies, there is tension (will he get his acorn) and stakes (without the acornScrat could starve). He doesn't talk, but we empathize with Scrat (he's tenacious, he's cute, he is little and the world is big). Even though he has his down sides (can't talk, a bit too narrow minded, very klutzy) we love him. Actually, in many ways it may be because he has these down falls that the audience roots for him to get his acorn--and it's funny to watch him fall.
Even though it is the same motive over and over and over and over the writers continue to throw new road block's to Scrat's goals. The newest Ice Age movie's trailer shows us Scrat learning about a new problem. Female Squirrels.
Why do you think that Scrat is such a successful character? Why do you think that after all these movies and despite the simple plot, people still laugh when Scrat falls or looses his acorn? And why do we feel a little bit of joy when the cartoon charector finally gets his acron (even though we know he's gonna loose it in a second)?
Saturday, May 2, 2009
at 4:45 PM