Toy Story 3 is delivered in mint-condition, 3D packaging just in time to become 2010's box office champion. Its been 11 years since Woody, Buzz and all our favorite childhood novelties sprang to life like over-wound Happy Meal toys. Only a core group of Andys favorite toys are present at the films opening, and those that remain are heck-bent on making the kid happy for the remainder of his life. But college days lay ahead for Andy, and he no longer has use for baubles like Mr. Potato Head and Slinky Dog. Faced with the impossible task of choosing to take them with him, leaving them in the attic or (gasp!) trashing them, the young mans choice leaves the lives of our favorite playthings in upheaval.
[image-1]What transpires from here is an amazing tale: heartfelt, thrilling, comical and, at its best, cyclical. Toy Story 3 does what every final (?) chapter of a franchise should, in that it concludes every arch the viewer cares about.
Whittling the group of toys to a tight, slick unit was a brilliant choice for the film. When faced with their own morality, if you will, with the final pages of their story becoming apparent, Andys toys see that life isn't only about play. Toy Story 3s finale is a roller coaster of emotions, and more than once youll feel the tension in your hands as they firmly grip the arm rest (hope it doesnt break off!) and moisture balls welling up in your eyes. Toy Story 3 is the strongest, wisest and most hearty of all of the Toy Story films and likely the best thing Pixar has produced.
[image-2]As the Toy Story saga reaches its conclusion, it's now more obvious than ever that the true movie hero of these films is Woody. The Tom Hanks-voiced cowboy has been a part of the public consciousness since 1995, but never before has the beauty of the character been so vibrant as it is in this wonderful chapter. Woody is the heart and soul of the entire Pixar catalog; a real Superman in a time when most of our heroes straddle the thin line between good and evil. Woody knows that going out of his way to risk his fabric to save someone in peril someone he knows has shunned him in the past and will likely burn him again in the future is not wise. But Woody always does what is right. He is a fictional character and a toy at that, but underneath it all Woody is what everyone should aspire to be they a parent or a grad student or even a Rabid film critic. Only the most brilliantly written film character can make a viewer aspire to be more than the person they currently are. Woody is one for the ages.
In a perfect world (a "Pixar world?") every story would come full circle. In the Toy Story universe, that's a beautiful reality. Now and forever more, this story populated with wonderful characters has been completed. It's a beautiful house on a pleasant street that will always draw out a smile as you walk past. It will always be there for you to visit, permanently settled and easy to find. Find it located at the intersection of Infinity and Beyond.
Disney/Pixars Toy Story 3 is a phenomenal unicorn of a film. What does that mean? The answer lies deep within the sordid history of cinema, specifically that part covering movie sequels. Ask yourself this question: How often is a Hollywood franchises second act on par with (or even better than) the original? Rarely, but there's a few. Now, up the ante on this game: Can you name a third film in a series ANY third film that was the equal to or greater than the original? Drawing a blank, right? Because there is no answer until now. Toy Story 3 is the mythical unicorn at play in a field of ponies.