Tags: Andrew Stanton, BD-Live, Blake Clark, Bonus View, CineExplore, Digital Copy, Disney, Don Rickles, Emily Hahn, Estelle Harris, Fast Play, Joan Cusack, Jodi Benson, John Lasseter, John Morris, John Ratzenberger, Laurie Metcalf, Lee Unkrich, Michael Keaton, Ned Beatty, Pixar, Tim Allen, Tom Hanks, Toy Story, Wallace Shawn
has an average rating of 8.8 on IMDb
1080p in AVC MPEG-4 on a 50gb disc
DTS-HD 7.1 MA & DTS-HD 5.1 MA ES
are roughly 2 hours & mostly in Hi-Def!
– 103 minutes
– Disney / Pixar
Street Date: November 2nd, 2010
Disc 1 uses 44.4GB total.
Disc 2 uses 36.1GB total.
Overall Verdict – Very Highly Recommended
The Movie Itself is Directed & Co-Written (story) by Lee Unkrich, with the additional writing (story) credits of John Lasseter, Andrew Stanton, and Michael Arndt (screenplay).
In this third installment of the “Toy Story” franchise, the time has come that Andy (voiced by John Morris) is no longer a child, but now a college-bound teen. For his toys, Woody (voiced by Tom Hanks), Buzz (voiced by Tim Allen), Jessie (voiced by Joan Cusack), Mr. Potato Head (voiced by Don Rickles), Hamm (voiced by John Ratzenberger), and Rex (voiced by Wallace Shawn), just to name a few, this means a number of seemingly gloomy outcomes; the attic, the trash, and maybe even eBay.
However, as Andy’s Mom (voiced by Laurie Metcalf) has also thrown in the possibility of daycare donation, the toys willingly set themselves up to go to Sunnyside Daycare in hopes of finding a place where children will actually play with them; all of the toys except Woody, who Andy actually pitches in his “college” box. Woody makes it a point to follow the others in hopes of convincing to choose the attic though, and through this event, he himself lands inside the walls of Sunnyside Daycare.
This new setting seems full of promise, as it not only has many children that come through everyday, but as the children grow-up and move-on, new children start coming to the daycare. This cycle is explained to Andy‘s toys upon their arrival inside of Sunnyside by the seemingly kind-hearted “Lots-O’-Huggin’ Bear” (voiced by Ned Beatty). The purple and plush bear “Lots-O” takes the gang of newcomers from their original destination room, the Butterfly Room, into the Caterpillar Room. Sort of putting “icing on the cake” in his kind welcoming to the new toys, Andy‘s toys all believe that once the children come back inside from recess, they are about to be played with to their hearts’ content. However, it is an entirely different and scary truth.
Andy‘s toys have been placed in the Caterpillar Room, as this room is for the much younger children, those who play with toys in a more primitive manner; needless to say, Andy‘s toys are utterly terrified. They soon learn that Lotso is not at all what he seemed to be, that he is more of a “Godfather” in charge of deciding who goes in the Caterpillar Room, and who goes in the Butterfly Room, where slightly older children play with toys in the way they expect to be played with. This of course leads to Woody and the gang attempting to change their very unfortunate situation.
In closing, “Toy Story 3” proves to be yet another gem of a story from Pixar, with its great dose of comedic relief against a well-written storyline, as well as baring emotional points. It is not simply the story at hand, but looking outside of the box, sort of speak, at the reality of our emotional attachments to past favorite toys from childhood and letting them go when reaching that “coming-of age”. Speaking of emotional, it’s very safe to say that most of you older folks who have “grown up” (so-to-speak or literally) during the span of this trilogy will get a bit “teary eyed” near the end; even those much older will be as well with memories of their childhoods — long past. This serves as a great ending to the franchise in my opinion and really closure to these characters — which I say without any spoilers intended.
Video Quality on this release is in full 1080p using the AVC MPEG-4 codec on a BD-50 (50 gigabyte dual-layered Blu-ray Disc) in the 1.78:1 aspect ratio.
Wow, as USUAL the folks at Pixar have created the absolute definition of “eye candy” and this time they also were making the film with Blu-ray Disc in mind after its theatrical run. Please note, this is NOT the 3D version of the film that you likely saw theatrically. This is a 2D Blu-ray Disc release. There is no word yet on a 3D release of this title, but it will likely be announced some point soon — so stay tuned to our news for that. Now that I’ve got that disclaimer out of the way, I’ll continue assessing the video quality here.
This is definitely the sharpest and most pristine of the three “Toy Story” films. Even when pausing the film during action sequences, you will notice only the tiniest amount of motion blur, making for what is basically a “picture perfect” presentation within any given frame. The color palette’s vibrancy is amazingly high, though more in a crisp and beautiful eye-catching fashion, rather than a palette that is stark and unfitting to the content. This contrast is further enhanced by a very solid black level, which also heightens the amount of available detail; even with the absence of traditional animation outlines of characters and such.
The amount of detail here is now astounding on this third “Toy Story” film’s Blu-ray release. A great example of this is the absolute photo-realism of the scratches on Andy’s toy-chest, and the photo of a younger Andy that Woody reflects on in the beginning of the film. When discussing the details of a film of this nature (CG animated), much praise is due to those behind the efforts of creating the said realism seen in the various textures of the toy characters. Some examples of this include the appropriate reflective qualities of Ken’s plastic “hair”, as well as other plastic-like elements that the toys are comprised of; especially the more complex plastic details of Rex’s scales. Also, within this new story of the “Toy Story” franchise, is additional character and antagonist, “Lots-O’-Huggin’ Bear.” This plush character’s body lends an extravagant amount of realistic visual details, from his suede-like nose, to more importantly, the purple fur that makes-up his body; this provides detail that is not only realistic as he stands amongst other characters, but physically appropriate movement of the short plush fur we are all familiar with. Overall, the video quality on this release undoubtedly receives a “5 Star Rating“.
Audio Quality on this release is presented in DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio. Wow, glad to see that Pixar and Disney decided to give this “Toy Story” film the 7.1 treatment — whereas the first two films only received 5.1 mixes on Blu-ray Disc. This release also includes a DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio ES track; this is not your ordinary 5.1 surround audio track, as it more or less is technically a discrete 6.1 mix. For those of you using a 5.1 setup, if your Blu-ray player is capable of down converting the 7.1 mix into a 5.1 mix, this is perfectly fine (for either selection). However, you will want to make certain that you have calibrated your channel setup.
The dialogue is perfectly driven in both the lossless (DTS-HD MA) mixes, and is never overwhelmed by the other impressively bold audible elements, such as the sound effects, or the original score composed by Randy Newman. On that note regarding the presentation of the sound effects and original music, both play a huge role in the usage of the rear channels, as well as significant bass presence; however, these elements of the audio presentation do not go excessively over-the-top. This is a definite compliment, as the audio track(s) are perfectly bright and channel-fulfilling, though do not cross into overkill territory, as this would be unnecessary for a family film in which (as I have mentioned in the past) the aimed audience of children viewers do not need their hearing destroyed by their parents’ home theater. Still yet, if you are simply watching the film for your own enjoyment, cranking the volume a tad will not leave you wondering where the “packing-a-punch” essence of the lossless audio track(s) has gone, as it is certainly there. Overall, the solid performance of the provided lossless audio tracks prove to be easily worthy of a “5 Star Rating“.
Bonus materials are presented in both High Definition (HD) and Standard Definition (SD) video quality with Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo sound — unless otherwise noted below.
DISC 1 includes:
- “Day & Night Theatrical Short” (HD, 6:02) This supplement uses DTS-HD 7.1 HR (High Resolution) audio, and also includes the option of DTS 6.1 audio as well.
- “Buzz Lightyear Mission Logs: The Science of Adventure” (HD, 4:25) This supplement, with involvement from NASA, is an educational short led by Buzz.
- “Toys!” (HD, 6:39) This is a great discussion about all of the toy characters within the film, and their designs.
DISC 2 contains:
- “Fast Play” is featured on this Disney Blu-ray Disc release.
- “Family Play” includes:
- “Film Fans” includes:
- “Cine-Explore” (HD, 1:42:53) serves as both an audio and visual commentary that uses the film itself in Hi-Def, just with Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo sound here (for the audio commentary and sound of the film itself). This feature does use Bonus View to deliver a “Picture-In-Picture” presentation. As a result, this requires the user to be on a “Profile 1.1” capable Blu-ray Disc Player.
- “Beyond the Toybox: An Alternate Commentary Track” featuring commentary given by the lead cast, filmmakers, and those from the tech, art, and animation departments. Again uses the film itself in Hi-Def, just with a Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo sound mix (for the audio commentary and sound of the film itself). This feature is just an audio commentary and does NOT appear to be using Bonus View or require it.
- “Roundin’ Up a Western Opening” (HD, 5:27)
- “Bonnie’s Playtime: A Story Roundtable” (HD, 6:31)
- “Beginnings: Setting a Story in Motion” (HD, 8:15)
- “Life of a Shot” (HD, 7:00)
- “Making of Day & Night” (HD, 2:05)
- “Paths to Pixar – Editorial” (HD, 4:40)
- “Studio Stories: Where’s Gordon?” (HD, 2:18)
- “Studio Stories: Cereal Bar” (HD, 1:38)
- “Studio Stories: Clean Start” (HD, 3:07)
- “Games and Activities” includes:
- “Publicity” includes:
DISC 3 (only available with the “combo” pack) contains:
A DVD of the film in Standard Definition.
DISC 4 (only available with the “combo” pack) contains:
A DVD-Rom with a Digital Copy of the film that is compatible with both Mac and PC computers as well as iTunes and Windows Media portable devices.
Overall, the bonus materials are very impressive and concise with their lengthy 122-minute (roughly) runtime (not including commentaries), that is also mostly in Hi-Def. The short “Night & Day” features excellent DTS-HD 7.1 HR sound, and serves as an amazing bit of audio “demo material” as a result. Fans will be very pleased with the bonus materials here on the 2-disc version as well as the DVD and Digital Copy on the combo-pack version. One last thing, the game “Toy Story Trivia Dash“, which is “powered” by BD-Live, is pretty fun itself; but, the questions are a bit tough for perhaps younger participants, and the controls (number keys) on the remote would prove to be less than easy for a child. Still, it proves to be a game that families will get some use out of after the get past the learning curve sort to speak (the controls). It’s also great to see they have included the film again on the second disc with a “Cine-Explore” audio and visual commentary as well as an additional technical audio commentary track as well.
Blu-ray Disc packaging:
NOTE: The full-sized 1920×1080 files are in a .PNG file format and uncompressed. Bare with the slow loading times, keep in mind these files are at least 1MB (1 megabyte) in size each.