Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Movie Review: Toy Story


Stars: 5 out of 5
Pros: Great story and characters we care about
Cons: It looks dated since computers have advanced in the last almost 20 (yikes!) years.
The Bottom Line:
Introduced Pixar
With a perfect movie that
Still holds up today



The Modern Masterpiece that Introduced Us to Pixar's Magic

Cowboy doll Woody is Andy's favorite toy, and as part of that comes the privilege of being the leader of all the other toys. His world is suddenly turned upside down when Andy gets a Buzz Lightyear action figure for his birthday. Suddenly, Woody finds himself in danger of being replaced as Andy and all the toys flock to Buzz. Worse yet, Buzz doesn't know he's a toy. He thinks he's the real Buzz Lightyear. But when the two toys get lost a couple days before Andy moves, they'll have to work together to get home. Can Woody work with Buzz when they don't have the same goal?

I can't believe it's been almost 20 years since this movie came out. It's had an immeasurable impact on the animation field and movies in general. At the same time, its flaws are evident. The humans look as plastic as the toys, and the fur on the dog is laughable. Computers have come a long way since this film came out.

Whether this movie was any good or not, it would have been an important milestone. Fortunately, it succeeds on an entertainment level as well. The story is masterfully told revealing plot points and character equally. The movie is extremely funny as well, with lots of jokes for the adults in the audience and some classic lines I quote all the time. Plus it introduces us to a Pixar staple, the climax that will not quit, which is guaranteed to keep you glued to your seat until the end.

And the voice acting?  Spot on.  It's hard to picture any voice but the ones we have for these now beloved characters.  Tom Hanks and Tim Allen are great as Woody and Buzz.  Really, you just can't go wrong with it.

Pixar has released great DVD's from the start, and this two-disc set is no different. The movie is transferred directly from the digital files, so the picture is perfect. Sound is wonderful in two separate 5.1 surround tracks. Many of these extras are from the Ultimate Toy Box release of a few years ago, and they are well worth having. The commentary is very informative. The deleted scenes are interesting, but it's obvious why they were deleted. The new features looking back at the movie from ten years later are wonderful as well.

Toy Story is a ground breaking movie that is just as much fun to watch as it is historic. I hadn't watched it in quite some time and was reminded just how fun it is. I've got to watch it more often.

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