“Toy Story 4” was directed by first time director, Josh Cooley and is the fourth installment in Pixar’s acclaimed and beloved film series. The film has all of its original voices returning to their respected characters such as Tom Hanks, Tim Allen, Joan Cusack, Don Rickles, Blake Clark, Estelle Harris, John Ratzenberger, Wallace Shawn & Bonnie Hunt. Along the original cast and in typical Pixar fashion, the also has a slew of new characters with the voices of Keanu Reeves, Keegan Michael-Key, Jordan Peele, Carl Weathers, Mel Brooks, Betty White, Tony Hale & Christina Hendricks. Annie Potts, who voiced “Bo Peep” in the first 2 films but did not appear in the previous, returns in this film.
Following the events of the previous film, Andy has given away his toys to a new child, Bonnie. Now, Woody (Hanks), Buzz (Allen), Jessie (Cusack) and the rest of the gang have been living happily with Bonnie, enjoying a new chapter in their life. However, one day after Bonnie comes home from school, the toys are blind sided by the fact that she makes a new toy from a fork. Ironically, Forky (Hale) joins the gang but doesn’t grasp the concept of being a toy. While Bonnie goes on a road trip with her parents, the toys tag along and go an unexpected adventure, meeting new toys along the way as well as seeing an old friend, ultimately altering their destinies and reshaping their once promising future.
I had my worries about this film due to the fact that the first 3 films worked very well as a trilogy. So making another only felt kind of off putting but after watching it, I’m happy to say that I was wrong. This was an amazing film from start to finish. I gotta say the evolution of Pixar’s animation is phenomenal. The last film was great visually and this felt like an upgrade to the visuals, almost photo realistic in some scenes. The characters are great from the original cast to the new one and everything in between. Much like the previous 3 films, there really wasn’t a whole lot to complain about. My only flaw with this film per say it the fact that there isn’t a main villain. Some of that aspect is forgiven by the brilliant storytelling and the unbelievable ending.
Overall, part 4 did not disappoint and really drove home the fact that Pixar could keep this story going should they choose to and keep this level of filmmaking. All things considered, this franchise has an unknown future but that’s what kept it going. As long as the keep it up like this, this series can be really great in the long run.