Sunday, August 3, 2008

Toy Story

Tom Hanks and Tim Allen lead the voice cast of this animated new classic. Toy Story is just that... a story about a group of toys and how they interact with each other and their owner. Hanks' old-school cowboy "Woody" feels the heat when Allen's space ranger "Buzz Lightyear" arrives on the birthday of Andy, their owner. Fearing replacement, Woody half-accidentally knocks Buzz out of the house and is then exiled by the other toys for this betrayal. Stuck outside on their own, Buzz and Woody set off on an adventure to get back into the home and good graces of Andy.

Running Time: 81 minutes
Original Release: 1995

Now the ratings...
(Need a rating system reminder?)
For Ages 5 and Up - $2
Anyone that doesn't like this movie should be sent to the Vatican and tested as the Anti-Christ. My young cousin loves it. My grandfather loves it. I love it too. If you don't like it, then we have nothing else to say to one another. Goodbye. (Five bucks says you're still there.)

Hardee-Har-Har - $2

Toy Story pulls from the comedic strength of the voice cast and adds "silly" humor for the younger audience along with smarter humor that is better received by the older viewers. The best jokes though are the relatively subtle ones about the rogues gallery of toys from over the years found in Andy's room... Barrel of Monkeys, Squeaky Shark, Etch-a-Sketch and more!!

Effects & Animation - $2
For its time, this was the leading computer animated movie. It has led to many more Pixar and Disney animated films but still stands the test of time, looking just as impressive today as the day it hit the theaters.

Acting - $2
Much like the animation, the acting in this movie was infinitely better than its predecessors. It set the standard for high-end actors' involvement in animated family movies that is still strong to this day. Voice acting itself can be difficult, but it is performed with excellence here and combined perfectly with body and facial reactions of the characters that make it feel almost real.

Critters & Creatures - $1
This category was made more for fictional creatures like those you would find in Star Wars or A Sound of Thunder (if you have to ask, then you don't want to know) but I felt that it is still appropriate here. The wide range of toys used in the movie was brilliantly assembled with classics like Mr. Potato Head and the little green army guys as well as new creations like Woody and Buzz Lightyear. They pulled at the heart strings with nostalgia while also performing an act of marketing genius with new toy lines, cartoons and other tie-ins flooding pop culture. Plus, we've all seen the mash-up toys that were destroyed by friends or siblings, so the scene where Sid is attacked by the toys he'd mishandled still cracks me up and freaks me out at the same time.
Total Rating: $9
I have seen and enjoyed almost every Disney / Pixar animated movie that's come out since Toy Story (except for that straight-to-DVD crap) but Toy Story is one of the few that will continue to be at the top of the list. This is one of those movies that I will one day show my children (or nieces and nephews... neither is coming any time soon) and it will be as funny and incredible as it is now. Feel free to leave a comment and let me know if you agree.

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