Pixar and the Parables of Christ

by Robert Velarde

up-dugWhat do Pixar movies and the parables of Christ have in common? Before answering the question, a little background information is in order.

Pixar Animation Studios has produced eleven feature films to date, each one of them a tremendous success with fans, critics, and at the box office. Unless you’ve been living in a pop culture-free zone, you’re more than likely familiar with films such as Toy Story, Finding Nemo, The Incredibles, Cars, Ratatouille, and Up, to mention just some of Pixar’s movies.

Not only are Pixar films amazing technical achievements, impressing viewers with high quality computer generated imagery, they also offer an almost countercultural hope that contrasts with many darker films. This doesn’t mean, though, that Pixar ignores the big issues and questions of life. Their most recent film, for instance, Toy Story 3 grapples with loyalty, dealing with change, courage, facing mortality, and more, while their 2009 film Up explores deep questions about life, death, and grief.

As I state in my recent book The Wisdom of Pixar: An Animated Look at Virtue and my Christian Research Journal article on the same topic, Pixar films also offer insights into wisdom and virtue. Whether intentional or not, Pixar movies often include themes that resonate strongly with classic Christian virtues such as hope, love, justice, and courage. These virtues connect with us because they are woven within the very fabric of our God-given moral nature…

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Pixar and the Parables of Christ by Robert Velarde

The Poached Egg


Recommended Resources: The Wisdom of Pixar: An Animated Look at Virtue | Meaning at the Movies: Becoming a Discerning Viewer