The Necessity and Justification of Toy Story 4

My feelings about Disney and Pixar going back to the toy chest for a fourth time around were not dissimilar to Jesse’s. I recall the first time I read that Toy Story 4 was in production. I, too, was filled with disbelief. I, too, believed Toy Story 3 concluded the trilogy with perfection and grace. I, too, didn’t want to cry at another movie about animated inanimate objects.

Eventually I came around. I started to rally behind the idea because I realized that, while any sequel is really just a cash grab, I trust the team behind Toy Story. They earned the trust with the exquisite Toy Story 3. However when I tried sharing this opinion with my many friends that were NOT behind the sequel, I continually got shot down. People really didn’t want this movie to exist.

Which means, I couldn’t help but go into Toy Story 4 with the need of it justifying it’s existence. I needed the film to prove everyone wrong. I needed the film to come through for me like Woody came through for Andy time and time again. Like a kid I needed my toys. And like any good toy, they pulled through and made me feel like a kid again.

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Anna and the Apocalypse

Life begins at the end of your comfort zone, do one thing that scares you every day, live for today cause you might be dead come tomorrow. These are the #lifequotes that drive me to live my life to the fullest every day. Which is why I enjoy engaging in risky behavior such as, seeing a movie in a theater without watching a single trailer or reading a review. I know, insert shocked emoji here, am I right?

Sometimes this risk pays off in a big way, like A Quiet Place. Other times it leads to me sitting through an entire musical-zombie-Christmas movie (Yes, apparently that’s a thing), somehow too mortified to stay and yet too embarrassed to leave. And to think, I was shocked when I walked into a completely empty movie theater. That should have been my first sign.

It’s clear what Anna and the Apocalypse wants to be: “What would happen if we took the main character from Lady Bird put her in Scotland to sing and dance like La La Land? Except there’s zombies! Not like, 28 Days Later zombies, but like, Shaun of the Dead zombies! Oh and make it Christmas-y!”. In reality it ends up being a Christmas special of High School Musical with zombies. It feels like a movie studio playing Dr. Frankenstein and ends up echoing Jurassic Park, “just because we can do something doesn’t mean we should.” The movie, much like the zombies it depicts, is not natural and should have been mercy killed from the beginning.

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Zootopia: You Can Be Anything You Want

Life’s a little bit messy. We all make mistakes. No matter what type of animal you are, change starts with you. 

My mistake was waiting so long to post this one. Sorry about that, but hey, change starts with me!

I normally find it to be in bad taste when I don’t come up with my own title for a movie review. The whole reason I started doing that was to force myself to try and think of something catchy and original (even if they wind up being dull and played out). So why did I renege on that pledge for a film featuring a plethora of furry animals? To put it simply, I think that Zootopia summed itself up better than I ever could. And what is it, you may ask?

It’s another astonishingly thoughtful and finely crafted animated movie from Disney, with characters that adults will connect with more than their kids.

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Frozen Nostalgia

(Note: Kevin and I considered doing a Best Movies of 2013 post before the Oscars, but alas we didn’t see everything and therefore couldn’t really comment on whether 12 Years A Slave was a better movie than Gravity. However, we think it’s still worth posting reviews of some of our favorite movies from last year, so over the next couple of weeks we’ll be talking about some films we admired in 2013. Enjoy!)

As I sat in a full theater watching the animated film, Frozen, I realized that I was experiencing a nostalgic moment of escape. I was having fun without a worry in the world. It occurred to me how rare it is that a film can snap me out of reality.

My love for movies developed when I was a child. Back then everything on the big screen was breathtaking, unique and amazing.

Except, Titanic, I hated that movie. Yes even as a kid I was a critic.

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