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The Terrifying Detail You Missed In Wall-E's Opening Scene

2008 was a great year for movies, with the likes of The Dark KnightIron Man, Tropic Thunder, and In Bruges getting released. It was also the year Pixar introduced us to the loveliest little robot ever animated: WALL-E. 

The film is one of the most beloved in Pixar's entire catalog, noteworthy for its engaging early sequences in which hardly any dialogue is spoken, as well as its homages to classic cinema, including the villainous AUTO taking inspiration from 2001: A Space Odyssey's HAL-9000. It's a great exemplification of how animated films can simultaneously entertain both children and adults by tackling relevant themes. 

Naturally, WALL-E deals heavily with environmentalism and how humanity is gradually allowing the Earth to become so polluted it may no longer be habitable in the future. The planet depicted in the film is filled to the brim with trash, which is why what's left of humanity is on a spaceship. WALL-E starts the movie all by his lonesome picking up garbage, and if you pay close attention during this opening sequence, then you may notice a heartbreaking detail about how this world's humans didn't try to stop the apocalypse until it was too late. 

Wind turbines suggest a grim timeline

If you look closely through the opening scene, you'll notice wind turbines and nuclear plants located amongst all the garbage. More specifically, these structures are built into the mountains of trash. Redditor u/JRockstar50 recently pointed this out, suggesting that this makes the desolation even more heartbreaking. According to the user, it shows how humanity "didn't convert to clean energy until it was too late."

With this image alone, the film offers a powerful message regarding society's march toward an inhospitable planet. As Antarctica grows hotter and hurricanes become more powerful, it's clear the effects of climate change are already upon us, and yet, those in power continue to drag their feet when it comes to making substantial changes to avoid even worse disasters. What's even more depressing is that it may even be too late. A few extra renewable energy sources may not be enough to undo the damage already caused. 

In this light, the opening scene of WALL-E functions as a cautionary tale. Even with some clean energy sources, humanity's fate may already be sealed. It's a pretty heavy message to put in a children's film, especially right from the start, but it's vital for everyone to be aware of the dangers we're facing concerning climate change going forward. The opening sequence is just one of the many moments in WALL-E viewers should pause to really appreciate what's being said.