Toy Story 3
Toy Story 3. The last Toy Story movie.
I don't know about anyone else, but the first Toy Story was a movie made for me. It was released in 1995 and I would have been seven years old when I went to go see it with my parents. I remember it being everyone's favourite movie that year. It was truly amazing. Not only was it technologically beyond anything that I can remember having seen before, it was a well crafted and well told story. Everyone who saw it came away with something that they liked.
Fast forward a few years and out comes Toy Story 2. I remember it being good, but not as good as the first one. This, oddly enough, mimicked the mindset of my age group. We were getting older and slowly moving away from "baby" things, but we still went back sometimes and played with those things despite telling ourselves that we were too old for it. It's just that we thought they weren't as good as they used to be.
So now we come to Toy Story 3 which immediately grabs the attention of my age group again. This wasn't a movie aimed at little kids. Don't get me wrong. I do think kids will be entertained by this movie, but it really spoke to us older folks.
In the movie, Andy is preparing to go off to college. His mother is making him choose what to do with what is left of his old toys. He can trash them, donate them, toss them in the attic, or bring them to college with him. A mistake causes our friends to be donated to a local daycare center, where a maniacal Teddy bear rules with an iron fist. Woody and the gang have to get beck home before Andy leaves for college.
I just graduated from college. I know what it feels like to have to make decisions about old toys and I know what it's like to be really attached to something childish and have to give it up. And the movie starts with a pumped up, special effects-ed, teenager like vision of Andy's first scene playing with his toys from the first Toy Story. Younger kids aren't going to understand the significance of that scene. That was for us.
This movie was dark. The toys (except for Woody) spent most of the movie completely without hope of ever being happy. They ended up in an extraordinarily disastrous situation that had the audience fearing the worst. There were incredibly touching reunion scenes. The ending was beautifully nostalgic and sad and hopeful all at the same time.
It was the perfect goodbye.
And I don't care who you are. If you grew up with the original Toy Story, this movie will make you cry. Even I got a bit teary eyed.
But it is worth seeing. If you have the time and the money, you owe it to yourself to see this story through to its end.