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.
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)?