To begin describing the story is an uphill task for me. As I left the theater, I was so full of emotion left and right that I kept thinking about the movie even when I’m on my way home in the train.
After watching this movie, I feel that the moment I spent in the cinema could very well be what I call the defining moment in storytelling. No doubt, Pixar is a master in crafting out wonderful stories. To be able to craft a story, so rich in emotions, so humanly connected to us even when the characters are just mere toys is unprecedented. Furthermore, the lessons that they impart in the movie are so fundamental and deeply rooted in basic human morals, that sometimes it is so difficult to sieve it through.
I was never a fan of the Toy Story series, even though I find the movies a notch above other CG films out there. But after I watched Toy Story 3, I kinda understood what the whole trilogy is trying to convey here, or rather the overarching themes. In the third installment, Andy has grown up and is ready for his next phase in life, college. As a result, he leaves home and along with it, his toys, in which he has outgrown them all. However, he still treasures them and would like to keep most of them in the attic. Torn between the decision of which toy to take to college, he chose only Woody in the final moment. In a twist of fate, the rest of the toys, stored in a trash bag were mistaken for trash instead. As a result, they were accidentally thrown away. But they were rescued and decided to head to day care center to be donated for other kids to play rather than being kept in the attic collecting dust. From there, they realised that the day care center isnt the place for them and they would like to return to Andy. But trouble arose, when other toys resisted their idea of escaping the day care center. Chaos ensues but they finally managed to return home just before Andy leaves for college. They managed to snuck in the box labelled to be stored in the attic. In the last minute, Woody attempted to send a message to Andy to donate the rest of the toys to a small girl whom he knew would take good care of them even after Andy leaves for college. He managed to made that decision for the toys to be donated, and soon the toys found a new home. He also managed to let go of Woody and allow the small girl to take care of his only prized possession along with the rest of the toys, finally reuniting them all once again.
There are a few lessons that I managed to pick out from the movie. Overall, this movie represents, friendship, trusts and faith and above all, undying loyalty in the face of adversity. Throughout the film, Andy’s toys refused to be separated even in dire straits. In one scene where they ended up in the landfill and into the incinerator, just when all hope have been lost, they still tried to hold each other hands even in the face of doom. I find that scene extremely beautiful and emotional. Here a dire situation presents itself where all hope is lost, and yet, they still remain together. Their bond is so strong, both in trust and friendship, its simply beautiful.
The ending was also another beautiful scene. I would not be able to think of another fitting ending to end the story, much less the entire trilogy. In the final moments of the film, Andy decided to donate the toys to a young girl whom Woody knew when he was accidentally taken home after he failed to escape from the day care center. He realised that this girl would be a perfect home for the toys when Andy leaves for college. When he tried to introduced the toys Andy had all these years, to the girl, I was stunned. Here he was in the lawn of the girl’s home, introducing each and every toy he had as if, its a final summary, a final farewell to all the toys. It felt so nostalgic, so “homesick”. He introduced each toy carefully, full of character, knowing that these toys were part of his life all these years as a kid and he had to make a painful decision to give it away. Finally, he played with the girl, and all the toys together out in the yard, as a final way of saying goodbye. It was heart wrenching. Its a mix of reunion, reminiscence, closure, nostalgia all at once.
Personally though, that ending has a slightly different interpretation for me. I feel that the ending is told in a way to show a closure to the series as well as completing the circle Andy’s life has gone through and to pass the torch to the next generation. And that torch is the freedom to allow a young child’s imagination to run wild. I think its the most beautiful thing I have ever seen. Seeing someone passing on a legacy that you had in you to another person, and at the same time cherishing that legacy in the hopes that it would be kept a live for a long time is simply briliant. And that legacy would probably be the child’s innocence and imagination. That is what toys ultimately do. Not to only entertain but also give a child’s mind to run freely and I think that’s the most important thing a child needs when he or she grows up. Andy has done exactly that to the young girl. In the final moments when Andy had to say goodbye, the little girl used Woody’s hands to wave at him, just like he did when he was young. I think it shows that Andy has succeeded and knows that the toys would be in good hands.
For those who have yet to watch, you must watch this film. There is simply no excuse for you to not watch its. Even if you hated CG films or dont think its money’s worth, every Pixar movie is a true gem and its worth forking out that 10 bucks or so to watch it.