Film Review: “Toy Story 3″ ★★★★★ (5/5)

Toys. The definition of which always remains the same, however, the meaning changes over time. Children see them as characters, actors in their little adventures, but as we grow up, sooner or later the phrase “It’s just a toy” slips out. Even though toys may just be toys, pieces of plastic glued together or beans in a piece of cloth, they encapsulate childhood. Looking at a toy one used to play with is looking into childhood. Because toys generate this nostalgia, they’re much like pictures or home videos. Upon glancing at them, for the briefest of moments, we are transported through time.

“Toy Story 3” rounds up the trilogy with a conclusion. The first two animated films are right up there with the best of animated films. This equally great installment is spectacular to infinity and beyond. A joy for the entire family has been overused by critics, in saying so I will add that I mean it now more than ever. Kids will enjoy the cutting edge prison break storyline, for them it’s Buzz Lightyear and Woody in another great adventure.

Yes, “Toy Story 3” is about Buzzlightyear and Woody but on a much deeper level, it’s the story of every toy, hence the perfect and simple franchise title.  Kids become teenagers and long for being children again, middle aged men/women, look at the teens with envious eyes, grown-ups embark mid-life crisis; we long for the past instead of embracing the present. “Toy Story 3” is a reminder to enjoy life as it is, not as it was or will be. The message, there’s nothing wrong with moving on.

Right from the start, the magical musical theme of the greatest animated trilogy of all time, warms our hearts. There is no need to judge the quality of the animation, for the simple reason that it’s Pixar and they never let us down. The key is to focus on the story, which in this case is just as impressive. Andy is all grown up and already moving out for college. This causes panic among the toys as they’re not sure what fate this will bring them to. Due to unfortunate circumstances, they end up in a day care center. At first it seems like they landed on toy heaven but once they’re stationed at the two to three year olds section, all hell breaks loose.

 New toys rule the day care and provide no mercy upon new arrivals. They want to remain at the five to ten year old section and the only way to stay there is to keep the heroes of our story locked up. For the remainder of the film, the audience embark on a nonstop action prison break, or shall I say day-care break. We are introduced to new toys, some are very pleasant and nice (the telephone and of course the Totoro cameo), others are extremely creepy and villainous. To shine light on who the villain will only spoil the fun for you. Just keep in mind that it (it’s a toy) is pitch perfect. John Lasseter and Michael Arndt’s screenplay bursts with humorous moments and memorable lines. As for Lee Unkrich, the director who also penned “Toy Story 2”, “Monster Inc.”, and “Finding Nemo”, BRAVO!-he did it again!

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16 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by S M Rana on June 17, 2010 at 4:24 am

    You have sold me on this, since I enjoyed at least one of the first two with my family.

    Reply

  2. And I have to wait more than one month here….

    Reply

  3. Posted by hasnain on June 17, 2010 at 7:06 am

    I can very well relate to your first paragraph. A couple of nights back I was without my laptop and had to find alternative mean to spend time and so I dug on my mixed music CD dated 6 years back. My taste had changed a lot since and I was even surprised to hear some of the songs. Its funny how things like old songs, pictures (and toys in this case) take you back to the state/phase and remind you how you had felt at that point in time.

    Now you have given me one more reason to watch it this weekend. Really looking forward for this one!

    Reply

    • Ah yes, music! More than anything, they inject us with moods and emotions of past events.

      Hasnain, I know you live in the US, but your name is very Egyptian. Are you from here originally?

      I’m glad you’re looking forward for this one. My review has convinced you. High expectations or not, you’ll love it!

      Reply

      • Posted by hasnain on June 17, 2010 at 4:34 pm

        I actually am from Bangladesh and now living in Canada.

        Yes, it is an Egyptian name! My father named me after an Egyptian scientist named Hasnain Hekel (not sure how his last name was spelled), you might be able to help me out since I couldn’t find anyone under similar name on the internet. I was always curious what my name meant, different sources/people suggest different meanings.

        I hope to visit Egypt, seen pictures of some breathtaking locations and of course been fascinated by the Great Pyramids since childhood.

      • Mohamed Hassanein Heikal was a dear friend of my grandfathers. His sons and grandsons are colse friends of mine :) Your name as well as “Hassan” and other similar names originated from the word hassana, which means “righteossness”, “morality”, or “good deed”. But the only difference between Hassan and Hasnain is the plurality of it. Hassan is 1, Hasnain is (twice as). I hope that makes sense. Coin for example is just 1 coin. Coinain means two coins. Get it?

        We have a comedic saying here in Egypt whenever someone named Hasnain does a bad deed we’d go “Fen el hassanat ya Hasnain?” which translates to “Where are your good deeds you twice as righteous deed” It sounds a lot better and funnier in Arabic :)

        P.S. Where in Canada? I may be heading there for Toronto Film Festival.

      • Posted by hasnain on June 18, 2010 at 10:59 pm

        WOW! This is amazing :D. I actually don`t have the right words to describe how I am feeling right now. Thank you so much Wael!

        I just looked up his name on Wikipedia and noticed that he was not a scientist but a Journalist (that too a very respected one). But you seem to speak of him in the past tense, I hope he is still with us. If it is possible then I would ask you for a small favor, I would want to send my humble regards to Mr. Hassanein or his sons, that would mean a lot to me!

        Yes, when I was a lot younger someone told me that it meant `Good` but as I grew older I thought that maybe that gentleman was just being nice to me. Its good to know that was not the case :D! Also I am already starting to feel the extra weight on being a nicer person :)

        I am in Winnipeg, Manitoba (known mostly for its harsh winters), which is almost 3hrs flight West from Toronto. If you ever plan to head here, do let me know :). Thank you once again.

      • Oh no, did I talk about him the past tense. Sorry I didn’t mean to imply anything. My english can be faulty at times. I’m sorry. He’s still with us but not as active as the past. He’s very quiet now, so no one really hears much of him. I do see him on occasions when I go to his son’s place. I was going to tell him about you on my next visit (with or without your favor). If someone was named after me, I would like to know it. It’ll bring a smile to his face.

  4. Posted by Monica on July 2, 2010 at 10:07 am

    I saw this film today. One of the best parts was Spanish Buzz. I was watching with my mouth open… except when I was laughing! And him with Jessie was sweet, as well as the comic Barbie and Ken relationship!

    Reply

  5. The Totoro was a brilliant touch, I must say. And the security guard monkey… man that got me, it was hilarious. The opening sequence was glorious, I loved it. I got this feeling when I was watching it that there was a whole world of toy potential to be mined and it was extraordinary. I agree, an excellent film.

    Reply

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