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Stars: Fred Willard. Voices: Ben Burtt, Elissa Knight, Sigourney Weaver, John Ratzenberger, Kathy Najimy, Jeff Garlin

Director: Andrew Stanton

A work of quite staggering imagination, WALL.E focuses on the eponymous robot (Waste Allocation Load Lifter, Earth Class) of the future, left behind on an uninhabitable Earth to gather up scrap and pack it into neatly packaged squares.

One day, eons after the last humans have fled, a sleek white search robot, EVE, arrives on Earth to seek signs of life. WALL.E falls heavily. And EVE finds herself reluctantly responding.

When they find a plant and EVE is recalled, WALL.E deserts his friend the cockroach and joins her on a vast spaceship in the sky, where the remaining humans languish, all getting fat, while the auto-pilot, OTTO, is determined never to return to Earth. WALL.E's pursuit of EVE upsets the equilibrium and life in space will never be the same.

An absolutely stunning animated feature from Pixar (Disney's deal to keep the partnership with them was the wisest move the company ever made), full of breathtaking visuals and unique charm, and amazingly making the relationship between WALL.E and EVE seem poignant and real.

The latter half of the film develops into a rather more conventional chase movie, but you should still have a hankie ready at the end. Younger children may find it all a bit baffling, but it's food for thought for slightly older minds.

Showing with Presto, a cute short cartoon about a self-centred magician and his white rabbit's longing for a carrot.

David Quinlan

USA 2008. UK Distributor: Walt Disney. Colour by deluxe/Technicolor.
97 minutes. Widescreen. UK certificate: U.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 0, Violence/Horror 0, Drugs 0, Swearing 0.

Review date: 12 Jul 2008