Pixar’s Toy Story 3 a Lesson in Simplicity

For the second week in a row, Toy Story 3 came out on top.

Pretty impressive, considering this bunch of familiar cartoons was battling Adam Sandler and Tom Cruise.  Ah, but could that be the point?

Pixar, the studio that brings you classic after classic, including WALL-E, Finding Nemo, Cars, The Incredibles and, of course, the Toy Story franchise, has elevated their genre past ‘cartoon,’ and opened up a whole new avenue – movies that touch us on a very adult level despite their parallel interest for three-year-olds.  It doesn’t matter if the protagonists are robots, fish, or automobiles, or monsters…we always know we’re going to get something that will stay with us.

There is a simple goal at the movies…we want to be entertained.  If we’re going to spend hard-earned money, we want to see something that will make an impact…something that will last.  And I think that as time and recession march on, people are less impressed with name and more interested in bang for the buck.

And Toy Story provides that.

As does Pixar.

You see, when you go into a Pixar production, you know you are getting quality.  Familiarity.  Lots of that proverbial buck bang.  Woody, Buzz Lightyear, and their gang are as famous as any Robert Downey Jr. or Nicolas Cage.  The stories generally revolve around simple themes such as loyalty or a parent’s love for their child, yet the movies are so irresistibly touching and human without being transparent, that we can’t help but watch.

And, I think that explains Toy Story’s success.  It’s not a mindless franchise where we see the sequel just because.  It isn’t an outing where we simply chase the name and the hype.

No.  Unlike so much these days Toy Story does something that very few things can.

It gives us exactly what we pay for…and a little extra.

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