CAROLINE SMAILES

Blu-ray, Toy Story 1 and 2

I was super chuffed to be sent Blu-ray Combi pack review discs for ‘Toy Story’ and ‘Toy Story 2’ (squeal!).

I first watched ‘Toy Story’ in the Odeon in Liverpool. I was single, a student and loved Disney. I was going through my ‘I don’t need a man stage’. I left the cinema and bought myself a toy Rex the dinosaur (I had a thing about dinosaurs when I was a student, which is a whole different blog post). I met G a couple of months later. Then, probably over a year later, I was standing at a bus stop after just having had my pregnancy confirmed and there was a little boy running around shouting, ‘To infinity and beyond!’ I can still remember starring at him and feeling utterly terrified that I’d have one of those screaming-boy-things. I did, of course.

Maybe that was why ‘Toy Story’ became such a part of my boys’ childhoods. Middlest still really loves the aliens and Eldest loved Buzz Lightyear when he was younger, he had all the merchandise (in the world) and went through a stage of refusing to take off his Buzz Lightyear pjs.

Of course, the DVDs we had were scratched, so I was absolutely thrilled to be sent the new special editions (released for the first time ever on Blu-ray and featuring a sneak peek at ‘Toy Story 3′). I think that the Blu-ray Combi packs are such good value for money, for any collector of Disney, but also the additional features on both discs lift the viewing experience into interactive fun. And I love that the films don’t seem to have dated, in fact they get better with every viewing and with every little bit of new animation that is spotted.

I’m assuming that you’ve all seen both Toy Story films (if not, why not?)

‘Toy Story’ was the first full-length computer animated film, all about an old fashioned pull-string doll (Woody) being replaced as the favourite toy by an ultra modern action figure (Buzz Lightyear). Woody is jealous of Buzz and Buzz thinks he’s real and not a toy, leading to jealousy from Woody and a depressive episode from Buzz, all sorts of calamities and a psychotic child called Sid. The film is ace, my most favourite Disney film. It makes us think about what toys do when you (I) leave the room (and possibly makes us (me) want to set up surveillance) and, this time, it made me feel sad about all those ‘must have’ toys that are now feeling rather unloved and stored in boxes in the attic. The high definition made the colours and the detail truly vivid, adding texture to the scenes and to the viewing experience.

‘Toy Story 2′ is, in my opinion, possibly one of the best sequels ever to be made. The high-tech creators at Pixar are the gods of making entertainment for all ages and ‘Toy Story 2′ is the perfect sequel.

Woody is stolen from a yard sale and his friends have to rescue him. The plot shift (from films 1 to 2) is off toys being left behind and into thinking about value and worth. ‘Toy Story 2′ is about friendship and wanting to have a purpose in life. Jess, Buzz and Bullseye show us what being a toy and being a friend is all about. It’s funny and moving (or maybe that’s just because I’m a sentimental old woman). On Blu-ray there is enhanced high definition picture and sound, this makes the human faces (that shift in technology from the making of 1 to 2) absolutely exquisite.

I can’t wait for ‘Toy Story 3′. I’ll be taking all the kiddies or, who knows, I may very well sneak into the cinema on my own… for old time’s sake.

(‘Toy Story’ Combi pack can be bought here and ‘Toy Story 2′ Combi pack can be bought here)

And because of ‘Toy Story’ and because of writing this post, I’ve got to thinking about how I ‘had to have’ all the Strawberry Shortcake dolls when I was little. Now they are in the attic, in a box, crying. So, dear blog friend, let me ask you… what toy did you ‘have to have’ as a child and do you still have it (or is it in an attic, in a box, crying)?

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11 Comments

  • MissT
    Posted March 17, 2010 at 9:01 am | Permalink

    I remember being about 8 and going to Toys R Us with my mum, and totally falling in love with a bear (in the bear aisle they were all sort of tumbling out). I remember standing there and holding him and gazing at him and thinking that I really truly had found a friend. I was tearful and heartbroken at having to leave without him.

    Via some kind of mum-magic, that bear turned up underneath the Christmas tree. And as I type this now, I can see him out of the corner of my eye, nestled in a corner of the bedroom. I’m 31. But he has been an excellent friend, and survived tears, and throwing and orange squash being spilt all over him on sports day.

    • Posted March 17, 2010 at 9:11 am | Permalink

      Oh Miss T, that’s a lot lovely and I bet he does funky dances when you leave the room. x

  • Posted March 17, 2010 at 9:30 am | Permalink

    Wow I didn’t know no 3 was coming out! My boys are nearly 12 and 10 now, but i’ll bet they’ll still want to go. Barbie dolls was what I was into but like my boys, I destroyed every toy I ever got.

  • Posted March 17, 2010 at 9:37 am | Permalink

    I also LOVE Toy Story. I wanted to buy myself a talking Woody but when I tested him in the shop he didn’t have the right voice (Woody sounds uncannily like Tom Hanks don’t you think?) so I didn’t buy him. *Sigh*

    I noticed quite a lot of my old toys in my daughter’s wardrobe yesterday; tucked away on the top shelf so no-one thinks she plays with them anymore. Isn’t that a bit sad?

  • Posted March 17, 2010 at 12:02 pm | Permalink

    The two toys I remembered wanting more than anything in the world were Cabbage Patch Kids and Wrinkles Dogs.

    I wasn’t allowed to get a Cabbage Patch Doll…sigh. Apparetnly they were for girls. Well, shows what they know! They re-released them recently, just before Christmas. I remember wanting to take one home and take care of it. I know that sounds silly but it’s true. I was actually kind of sort of hoping to get one for Christmas. I didn’t but they DO have them for $10 at Walmart, so perhaps I will indulge in my childhood fantasy, just a little bit.

    I DID however get a wrinkles dog when I was 8 years old. Remember them? You could put your hand in their head like a puppet…they were part puppet and part stuffed animal. They had all kinds and each came with a different outfit and a certificate of birth.

    My mother got it for me and I still have it actually. I don’t have the bone it came with or his clothes, but I still have him and that is the important part. I named him William. It seemed like a very good name for a dog at the time and, I suppose, it still is.

    Every once in a while, I will take him out of the closet and hug him, just for old times sake. :)

  • Posted March 17, 2010 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

    I HAD to have a Lone Ranger action figure (from the TV series we’re talking 1970′s here) and I often dreamed of playing with him in his smart little outfit and holster belt, fixing him in all his nice little articulated poses ready to outsmart those dang cattle rustlers, so when I saw a Lone Ranger-shaped box wrapped up under the Christmas tree my heart swelled with renewed love for my parents – until I opened the box to find a Lone Ranger Airfix model kit with zero points of articulation and all the personality of a coat-hanger. Needless to say my heart shrivelled up into a prune-sized mass of distorted hatred and I wanted nothing less than the ultimate damnation of Hell to be bestowed upon my parents for shredding my childhood dreams so mercilessly. I won’t tell you if I got my wish.

  • Posted March 17, 2010 at 12:56 pm | Permalink

    And BTW, my kids love both films but Toy Story 2 just pips the original in my book (and my daughter’s too with the addition of Jessie). Matter of fact my 2 yr old got a talking Buzz for Xmas and my 6 yr old got a talking Jessie so even after all this time, the movies and the iconic characters have not only stood the test of time but remained so strongly in people’s hearts. I’m looking forward to TS3 (Spanish Buzz = classic)

  • Posted March 17, 2010 at 7:59 pm | Permalink

    Ooh I love both the movies, big time, and I’m looking forward to the third hugely.

    What did I have to have when I was little? Anything to do with Star Wars. Who’d have thought it! ;)

  • Posted March 17, 2010 at 10:30 pm | Permalink

    Uhoh…. my action men erm some went missing in action… others were marred by the curse of Black Schloss (long story, haunted castle were WW2 soldiers shelter and go missing one by one only to return horribly mutated…)

    Sorry. Ginger my teddy bear was always cared for…we even did open squeaker surgery on him…and it worked! I’m not helping things am I?

  • Posted March 17, 2010 at 10:33 pm | Permalink

    Ehm the sad thing is you know this about me already which leads me to believe I have limited conversation topics… A Worzel Gummidge doll with changeable heads. I loved it beyond belief.

    I also had a glow worm but my rather forgetful mother never got me batteries so I never saw it shine (sob!).. And also a large collection of small, medium and massive Sylvester cuddly toys.

    I loved Toy Story too, who didn’t?! Fantastic!

    Oh and those Strawberry Shortcake dolls? Never did it for me – I just wanted to eat them… ;-)
    x

  • Posted March 19, 2010 at 9:01 pm | Permalink

    Vi – I was more of a Sindy than a Barbie girl. I had a house for her and it had a lift. I was posh :)

    JJ Beattie – oh don’t, that’s too sad. Littlest is just coming out of a stage and into new toys… but secretly I don’t want to put all her ‘babyish’ ones in the attic :(

    Jamieson Wolf – I always wanted a Cabbage Patch Doll, but they were so expensive :(

    Darren Craske – OMG, so glad I asked :)

    Darren Craske – it’s the standing the test of time that matters, isn’t it?

    Nik Perring – I LOVE Star Wars.

    Jon (Sid) M – oh my! You really really are Sid, aren’t you?

    Kelly Railton – I am beyond jealous of your Worzel Gummidge doll with changeable heads. Have you still got it? Can you post photos? And HOW MEAN was your mum for not getting batteries, seriously I do that all the time with my kids and must stop!

    xxx

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