Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Pixar Animation Studios: Part 3: Toy Story 2

Series Intro: In my purposeful retrospective of WDAS I couldn’t ignore it’s younger sister: PIXAR. This is Part 3 in the retrospective of PIXAR

Official Title: Toy Story 2
Release: November 24, 1999 (Only one year after Bugs Life)
Running Time: 92 minutes
Estimated Cost: $90 million
Estimated Revenue: $485.015 million
Overall Rating: 4 stars out of 5

Plot Summary
Andy is still in love with his toys and furiously plays with them, so much so that right before leaving for cowboy camp, he rips Woody’s arm. Through a series of unfortunate events Woody winds up in the clutches of a toy collector instead of the loving arms of Andy.

The toys: Buzz, Rex, Hamm, Slinky Dog and Mr. Potato Head figure out where to find Woody. As they are heading to save him, Woody meets his fellow cast mates from his old TV show: Jessie, Prospector and Bullseye.

The collector fixes Woody and sells him and his mates to a toy museum in Japan. Jessie and Prospector are excited to be in use again after years in storage. Woody goes back and forth between wanting to go with them or return to Andy. Whenever he tries to leave, he finds something [one] stopping him.

Buzz and the toys enter a toy store and get separated, and the rest of the toys find a new Buzz toy (and it takes them a long time to realize that he is not their Buzz). They meet back up in the apartment building where Woody is. And just as they are going to leave with Woody, the Prospector reveals that he is not Mint in Box and has been trying to keep Woody there.

Woody and his mates get separated once again from Buzz and crew on the way to the airport. Woody, Jessie and Bullseye escape from the Prospector and return to Andy’s room with Buzz and the crew just in time for Andy to see the new toys and thank his mom.

Plot Rating: 5 stars out of 5

PIXAR has once again, hit it out of the park. The toys are back for another adventure and it was great. What makes a PIXAR film great is not the animation it is the story.

Animation Rating: 4.5 out of 5

The only thing that looked weird in the movie was the dog, Buster. Andy’s dog just looked odd. PIXAR hasn’t yet mastered the look of fur. While Andy’s hair remains as one unit (or several large units), the dog’s fur is short and in many different strands. Buster’s discourse with his surroundings reminded me of Tarzan’s parents during the tempest; beautiful animation against CG that’s not as great. Hopefully when I return to the toy in TS3, PIXAR will have advanced enough.

The Test of Time:
One more sequel 10 years later… I don’t think I even need to further talk about the Toy Story series’ Test of Time

Final Thoughts
TS2 was a great follow up, and a wonderful sequel. I surely hope other PIXAR sequels are just as wonderful.

Next Up:
Monsters, Inc.

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