Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Toy Story 3 Review: Toy Story 2 was better

WARNING: Spoilers

I think my opinion differs from my friend Sibry (and others), but nonetheless I think Toy Story 2 was better.

Sure, the animation was up a notch, they spanned more sets, upped the effects, and cut to humans more. And the Spanish Buzz Lightyear gag was so funny that you get dissappointed when normal Tim Allen takes back over... something I think they recognized, so they put the gag at the end where Buzz danced to the Spanish music.

And sure, the movie's going to make more money. Actually, it's currently the #2 Pixar movie and will easily become the #1 Pixar movie and #2 animated film of all time, and it might even give Shrek 2 a run for it's money as the #1 animated film of all time.

But really, was Toy Story 3 better?

I say no. Perhaps it was better than the first one, and it definitely deserves the box office it's getting, and it's entertaining and hilarious, but I don't think it's better than the second Toy Story movie. This one:

First, I liked the Toy Story 2 villains better. I liked the Wayne Knight human villain, Al (even Toy Story 1 had Sid as a villain), and the villain just doesn't seem as difficult to beat when it's another toy (which I think Toy Story 3 recognized, so they made the villain into a gang of toys). Even Toy Story 1 has Sid as the villain (and no real toy villains).

So the villains in Toy Story 2 were Kelsey Grammer's Stinky Pete, Wayne Knight's Al, and Emperor Zurg was sort of a comical villain that really brought Buzz's character to life (not as funny as Spanish Buzz, but it tied in better to Buzz's character).

So when Lotso shows up in Toy Story 3, I can't help but feel that it's obvious he's the villain and he's doing exactly what Stinky Pete did (stabbing the other toys in the back to create his toy utopia). Stinky Pete was slightly more interesting because he wasn't a stuffed animal, and he had more of a turn because you thought he was stuck in plastic wrapping.

The "demise" was even similar for both Lotso and Pete. Pete got what he deserved by being picked up by the artistic girl in the airport, and Lotso got what he deserved when the trucker attached him to the grill. It's sort of a sentence to an eternity of torture (verses the more common deaths that Disney and DreamWorks villains get).

So that's all the first reason.

The second reason is how personal and direct the theme was to the key characters. In the sense of how they related to Andy, the third movie actually did that better than the first two. However, in the sense to how the story related to Woody, the primary character and Buzz, the secondary character, Toy Story 3 did that the least. And the best one was Toy Story 2.

In Toy Story 2, Woody explored this whole new world of how he was from a puppet-based TV show called Woody's Roundup. It was personal, it was fun, and the new characters were instantly tied in to him (verses the new Toy Story 3 characters; the most interesting one was Michael Keaton's Ken, because he was connected to Barbie). Likewise, Buzz's littler interactions in Toy Story 2 with Zurg were also much more personal and interesting.

So there you have it. Those are the two reasons why I liked Toy Story 2 better.

Was Toy Story 3 a great movie? Yes. Go watch it if you haven't. And if you haven't watched it, I kind of just spoiled it for you (but I warned you first). So sorry about that.

Is Toy Story 3 worth watching in 3D? No. I see no signs that the makers tried to optimize it for 3D. Maybe a tiny bit of thought, especially on things like the title letters, but nothing super impressive.

Overall, it was a worthy successor a great film.

- The Emperor


  1. Totally agree. Plus, the dilemma that Woody felt in the Toy Story 2 established the most profound connection between the toys and Andy - whether he would go for the roundup, to be appreciated forever, or go home to Andy, to be loved though he understands the risk of Andy's growing up. It's good to know I'm not the only one thinking that Toy Story 2 is the best among the three. But the three, I think, was the perfect film franchise. The greatest trilogy I would say.

  2. I though No.1 was the best because of its originality. Toy Story 2 was equally as good though because the story itself seemed the most thrilling. Although the third installment was an excellent movie it didn't quite match its predecessors because it was more of the same and lacked the originality of the first one.


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