REVIEW: Toy Story 3

17 06 2010

Pixar and “Toy Story” have really come to define the cinematic landscape for animation in my lifetime.  When I was 3 years old in 1995, they rolled out the first full-length animated film made entirely with computers.  At the time, it was an anomaly.  Now, I can hardly imagine a world where every movie isn’t made with computers.

In some ways, you could even say I’ve grown up with “Toy Story.”  It’s a movie whose characters I have grown very attached to, and not just on the screen.  I had countless “Toy Story” action figures and toys in my childhood, from the hand puppet Rex and Hammy to the stuffed Woody to the Buzz Lightyear transformer.  Like any good toy does, they provided countless hours of entertainment and stimulation for my imagination.

So needless to say, I had the highest of expectations for Pixar to once again create not just a movie but another authentic piece of childhood bliss enjoyable for kids and kids at heart.  The “Toy Story” crew has been up in the attic for 11 years, and they could have easily gathered some dust over time.  But as soon as they appear on screen, they win you over with a charm that feels fresh out of the box.  Pixar preserved them all in near mint condition, and “Toy Story 3” quickly reminds you how easy it is to fall in love all over again with these plastic pals.

Pixar once again demonstrates their incredible capacity for creativity by keeping the story king and fully fleshing out characters that we can really care about.  Their simple formula has worked flawlessly for 15 years and has never gotten rusty.  But the Pixar magic isn’t limited to the screen.  The spirit of the movie spreads through the theater, inspiring a new generation of “Toy Story” fans and reminding all of the untold power imagination can have.

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