Cars 3 Review


This car is drive-able. 

I love animated movies.  To me, it’s an art that is taken for granted.  The animated movies these days have leaped to another level of 3D CGI rendering with hyper realism.  At the forefront of that is Pixar.  Fresh of their win for best animated short last year, Pixar brings us the sequel that no one was asking for. Cars 3. 

There is no denying that Pixar has some great titles in its roster.  I mean they’ve given us Toy Story, Finding Nemo, The Incredibles, A Bug’s Life, and Up to name a few.  Cars is probably the most lackluster of all them.  I haven’t seen Cars or Cars 2 at all and haven’t felt any burning desire to. Yet, here comes Cars 3 and I was curious to see if there was anything of value here.

Essentially, Cars 3 is about an aging racer, Lighting McQueen. He is nearing the end of the road as far as winning races go since newer, more upstart models are coming out that are capable of beating him soundly.  One of those cars is Jackson Storm, the new headliner of the racing circuit.  During an ill-fated race, Lighting exerts himself too much trying to win leading to a brutal crash.  At a crossroads, between retirement and continuing his career, Lighting enlists the help of his sponsors and trainer, Cruz Ramirez, to get him back to top racing shape.  Does Lighting have what it takes to get back to the top of the racing mountain or will he look at the bigger picture by deciding it’s best to bow out?

So, it’s Rocky in animated car form. Which is fine I guess since I like Rocky. Everyone likes a good comeback/underdog story.  Cars 3 almost borders on homage to that since there are a few scenes that are similar.  It’s a standard story regurgitated in animation for children to consume. The story here can be tolerated and even moderately enjoyed by adults too.  Also, there are some strangely dark moments here and there so that was interesting.

It all comes down to the animation and the voice acting however.  The animation is beautiful.  The hyper realism of the backgrounds is awe inspiring in their detail.  The details of the cars are almost trippy because they look so real but then have cartoon eyes. This is indeed a strange universe and it makes you ponder about the logic of somethings, but that is part of the fun of this franchise I guess.

We get solid voice acting in Cars 3. Owen Wilson really epitomizes the character of Lighting McQueen.  Nathan Fillion and Armie Hammer were solid as the pseudo villains.  Cristela Alonzo was also fun as Cruz Ramirez. 

This is not a bad entry for Pixar. There’s certainly enough here for kids and adults to enjoy together.  I do think the run time should have been slightly shorter as I found myself nodding off towards the middle before getting more interested in the stretch run.  Other than that, this could be worth checking out just for the animation alone. 

Grade: C+


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