Review of 'Toy Story 4'

4th film in the 'Toy Story' series

toy_story_4.jpg You thought that Toy Story 3 was the last toy in the box? Well, no, Disney and Pixar have decided there is another story to tell but, sadly, it is a confused…though fun…mess.

Woody (voiced by Tom Hanks) and the gang are now owned by Bonnie (voiced by Madeleine McGraw). On her first day at school Bonnie, with the help of Woody, creates a new toy she calls “Forky” (voiced by Tony Hale) made of a “spork” and some other garbage. Woody spends a lot of time trying to convince Forky that he is not garbage but rather a toy. When Forky is taken captive by “Gabby Gabby” (voiced by Christina Hendricks), a rejected damaged toy in an antique store, and her very creepy ventriloquist dummy flunkies Woody is determined to rescue him and return him to Bonnie.

That is the long and the short of it but there are SO many twists and turns along the way it all becomes extremely confusing. Most of the characters have multiple changes of heart and frequently get distracted sending the narrative into a completely different direction. By the end it is unclear what exactly has happened but, having said that, this is all an excuse for a lot of great fun with the return of Bo Peep (voiced by Annie Potts) and her sheep now street-wise and using a remote controlled skunk to get around (yes, believe it). Duke Caboom (voiced by Keanu Reeves no less) is great as the insecure stunt toy who is determined to finally nail that jump…(and gets the chance several times). Of the rest of the Toy Story regulars we see relatively little even of Buzz Lightyear (voiced by Time Allen) who continues his role as Woody's conscience (though his turn at “listening to his inner voice” here is hilarious). There are few laugh out loud moments (the attack on the RV is really funny) though there are still a good number of jokes aimed at the older crowd to keep them amused otherwise this has the feel of an overly extended Saturday morning cartoon with much of the same amount of logic. The ending is slightly unexpected but, in retrospect, quite apt and appears to draw the Toy Story series to…another (!)…decisive conclusion.

Disappointing but still quite amusing. Join Woody and his friends one last time on the big screen.

Rating: “It is OK but I have some issues”

Review Date: 2019-08-01

Directed by: Josh Cooley

Studio: Pixar Animation Studios

Year: 2019

Length: 100 minutes

Genre: Animation

Other reviewed films in the 'Toy Story' series: