Animal House… With Monsters

One does not have to have seen 2001’s “Monsters, Inc.” to be able to follow along with the prequel, “Monsters University.”

It doesn’t seem like it has been 12 years since one-eyed Mike Wazowski (Billy Cyrstal) and furry gorilla-like James P. “Sulley” Sullivan (John Goodman) first showed up on the big screen. 

MU looks back at how Mike and Sulley first became bitter enemies then became the best of friends. Both came to college to learn the sacred and difficult art of scaring to land a job on the scare floor.

After getting off on the wrong foot with the dean of the school of scaring, Mike and Sulley are faced with expulsion and are desperate to stay at MU.

With no other choice but to join a fraternity, Oozma Kappa, with four geeky misfits to compete in the Scare Games to secure their future into the school of scaring.

Roar Omega Roar is the hot shot frat on campus that is expected to take the cup home. On the other hand is Oozma Kappa as the underdogs of the century trying to compete not only for the title but to stay at MU.

When the last challenge is about to unfold, all you can do is hope that happy endings still do come true and that the good guys always win.

Prepare for heartbreak as friendships are tested, dreams are crushed and the reality that bad things do happen to good people… or monsters. 

 The film is hilarious with witty comments (one coming from an unexpected character saying “I can’t go back to jail!”) and a plot that has an equal set of inspirational and funny moments.

The attention to detail is also something else to be admired. Notice the buildings with fangs, horns, tentacles and scales to match different kinds of monsters. The attention to real world college-like staples like the Greek houses, cool campus vibe and peppy campus orientation speak volumes to teens and parents.

Yes, it will appeal to children and yes, it will appeal to teenagers and grownups. Parents remember taking their kids to see the beginning and are just as excited to see the story unfold. Children would are now teenagers will be able to cope with going to college.

MU is an easy movie to look over this summer as big action and thriller flicks take over the box office, but be sure not to undervalue the best animated movie of the summer. 

While some scenes may seem a bit off or awkward, do not doubt or be mad that the script does not follow the generic routes. MU has its own sense of flow and will surprise you with honesty and responsibility. 

The last 15 minutes will delve a little deeper into sending a message about right from wrong. But the repercussions from Sulley’s right decision and Mike’s aptitude to be nice and forgive leads to the life they live in the first movie. 

Bottom line: the movie is a homerun that you will not want to miss.


Oh, and do not forget about Pixar’s love for short films at the beginning of movies. “The Blue Umbrella” is about two lost umbrella in the rain walking through the city. 

Drains, awnings and windows help make this short film come to life and make viewers smile.

Cayla Maurer can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]