Well, it finally happened. The technology caught up to the awesomeness of the Toy Story franchise. From it’s action-packed opening, to it’s more grown-up plot about letting go, to it making me ask questions like, “Do toys have sex with each other when we aren’t looking? How do they even do it? Wait, can toys have babies? How does a toy give birth?” etc. Toy Story 3 is a movie you’ll never forget! Okay, I said it, where’s my royalty check, Disney? What do you mean the check is void because I’m writing down everything I’m saying? No I didn’t read the bylaws! Oh well, guess I’ll have to try to sell out at a later date.
Aside from that pending lawsuit, this movie starts off feeling like it’s just stealing the plot of the first film, except as a group of toys getting lost from Andy, instead of just Buzz and Woody, and they all have to find their way back. But then it flips it on its head at the start of the second act, and instead of an Odyssey/Toy Story 1 ripoff, we’re treated to a dark, broody, prison break movie that’s fun for the whole family!
This movie has this odd mix of combining pretty much every genre and movie-stylings you could think of, a noir-detective talking-telephone, a rather sweet romance between, of all people, Barbie and Ken, and a whole society of toys that kind of gives off a creepy cult vibe. Really it’s a bunch of genres that probably shouldn’t go so well together, especially considering how it’s also supposed to be a kids movie and all. But really it becomes one of the best Pixar movies to date by fluently blending these conflicting plots to something that definitely belongs among its predecessors.
There’s one glaring problem in the film and it goes by the name of Deus Ex Machina. For those who don’t know, it’s what happens when a writer writes themselves into a corner and doesn’t know how to get the characters out of it so they just pull something out of their ass. Here, they even have lighting effects to give you the impression that God is doing for a moment before you’re like “oooohh, that’s what happened.” But it’s still a big ol’ Deus Ex Machina glaring you in the face, one of the biggest amateurish mistakes any writer can make, and Pixar knows better. I think it would have been fine if it were something smaller plot wise (I mean everyone needs a Deus Ex Machina everyone once in a while) but being that it’s during the biggest (and darkest) moment in the whole film, I can’t really let it slide.
+10: What a great movie to add to the Toy Story canon.
-1: A big ol’ Deus Ex Machina slapping me in the face