By Christopher Redmond

Mailed on August 14, 2013

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Dear Roger Tonry
Aerial Consultant

Dear Roger,

I'm so confused. So, so confused. I just… I can't even… wow. I mean most people in the film industry have a few strange credits. Early gigs to pay the bills or gain experience are like a rite of passage. But your entire IMDb filmography is just… awesome. Editor on Playboy: Wet & Wild. Cinematographer on Playboy: Sexy _Lingerie__ II. Director of _Playboy: The Best of Pamela Anderson. Sure, it's a little "specialized", but so what? You're living the manly man's dream. But now this: Planes. In the world of Cars. From the creators of toys, and lunch boxes, and more plastic than even Pamela Anderson can tolerate. Dude, it's safe to say that this big-budget Disney film qualifies as the artistic low-point of your career.

I'm being serious.

I understand that this is a movie for kids. Young kids. Anyone over the age of 8 is probably going to feel like they're being talked down to. But come on. You know better than anyone that attracting adults matters. An intelligent joke here and there, a clever plot twist - anything to raise this unapologetically exploitive picture into something not so embarrassing. That's the whole Playboy mantra. Unfortunately, that's not what you were hired for. Which is even more confusing.

Somewhere along the way you obviously learned something about aerial photography. Makes sense - there's only so many ways to shoot naked centerfolds before you need to get really creative. So I'm happy to report that the aerial perspectives in Planes are actually my favourite part of the film. Weeee! In some of the training sequences for this (painfully uninspired) race-around-the-world underdog story, the point-of-view holds long enough to feel like we're really following those exaggerated curves of a mountain or soft contours of a hill.

Hmm. I wonder where the inspiration for that came from.

There's just not much else here to enjoy. A few plane puns made me smirk, but never resulting in anything as drastic as a smile. And I have a kid now, I should be open to this stuff. But the advance screening of Elysium was playing in the room right next door, dammit. I felt the way Ricky Martin must have during all his video shoots, surrounded by women from your films: sure, I'll do it because it's my job, but I feel sad inside. It's just not my thing. Why can't I be surrounded by those people? My people. People like you.

Let me know when your career gets back on track. Those are films I actually want to see.



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