Pixar and Dreamworks are two of the biggest rivals in the entertainment industry. Each have given us some outstanding films over the years and some moments we will cherish forever. But between two powerhouse companies, which is the greatest animation studio? We take a look a some of their biggest movies to find out.
Toy Story vs. Shrek
These two franchises are arguably Pixar and DreamWorks’ biggest success stories. Toy Story (1995) was Pixar’s first animated feature, which put them where they are today, while Shrek (2001) saved DreamWorks from creative ruin. Toy Story has produced three movies so far, with a fourth one on the way. Shrek has four films under its belt, with a possible fifth movie to come.
Both films tell a heart-warming tale of friendship, from Woody and Buzz overcoming their jealousy, to Shrek and Donkey resolving their differences. They also share the fact they both have a great soundtrack, and endearing supporting characters. The first Shrek has a slightly slicker animation style, but Toy Story really comes into its own by the second movie.
Winner: Toy Story…purely for the fact it gets stronger with each sequel.
A Bug’s Life vs. Antz
There was a giant uproar when Pixars’ A Bugs Life (1998) and DreamWorks’ Antz (1998) were both released in the same year. While both stories revolved around the hard-working insects, they were told in two very different ways.
The animation used by Pixar was a a great deal more colourful in tone and the characters appeared more ‘human-like’. Antz was darker overall and the story was a more complex; revolving around the relationships between the ants, opposed to the adventure they went on. ABL is clearly more suitable for younger children, while Antz can be enjoyed by older children and adults alike.
Monsters Inc. vs. Monsters vs. Aliens
Though both films are about monsters, they are completely different from one another. Monsters Inc came out in 2001, while DreamWorks Aliens was released years later in 2009. Monsters Inc. spawned the sequel Monsters University in 2013.
Pixar’s Monsters Inc tells the uplifting tale of two monstrous best friends who discover a human child in their world. Monsters vs. Aliens is about a teenage girl who turns into a giant after getting hit by a meteor. She then gets kidnapped with a group of monsters and befriends them in order to escape. While both stories a great, Monsters Inc is stronger in terms of humour and character development.
Winner: Monsters Inc.
Finding Nemo vs. Shark Tale
In 2003, Finding Nemo made its mark in cinema history with its touching tale of a father’s search for his son. A year later, DreamWorks released Shark Tale – a story about a fish who just wants to make it big.
Both movies were set under the sea, but it is evident Pixar took a more realistic approach while Shark Tale went for comedic affect. Shark Tale deserves points for its humour and references to pop culture, but Finding Nemo storms ahead with its storytelling.
Winner: Finding Nemo…there was really no contest.
The Incredibles vs. Megamind
Both a great superhero movies, but The Incredibles (2004) takes the perspective of the heroes while Megamind (2010) takes the perspective of the villain. They share similarities in that the lead character is struggling with an identity crisis.
Both films have their merits; Megamind had smoother animation and a few more comedy scenes. The Incredibles had a more original storyline and stronger ending. As far as the characters go, The Incredibles had a better range and gave us likeable, relatable family members.
Winner: The Incredibles.
Brave vs. How to Train Your Dragon
Brave (2012) and How to Train Your Dragon (2010) have many similarities. This is evident in the way both lead characters, Merida and Hiccup, are teenagers who are trying to break free from their parents shadow. Brave is set in medieval Scotland and HTTYD is set in a mythical Viking world.
The stylization and overall ‘Celtic’ appearance of the movies is rather similar. Brave gives a brilliant representation of Scotland with its beautiful graphics, but HTTYD has a much better story with a wider array of characters. The adorable Toothless has found a place into so many hearts. Plus, story about dragons beat bears any day of the week – its just how it goes.
Winner: How to Train Your Dragon.
Overall Winner: Pixar – for being able to bring the simplest of objects and characters to life and make us fall in love with them.