I received a copy of Toy Story of Terror to facility at this review; all opinions are my own.
When I heard Disney | Pixar had come out with another Toy Story film I was more excited than a grown woman probably should be…what can I say, I LOVE Toy Story! I was anxious to get my hands on the latest creation to see how Buzz and Woody might get themselves out of their latest dilemma. To be honest, I was also interested in how the film would continue with Andy’s toys in their new home after he left for College in the tear-jerking Toy Story 3. From the very beginning on this movie to the last frame, I enjoyed the many qualities that made up the latest piece of the Toy Story Saga.
The Toy Story of Terror: Theme
As a mother and teacher and lover of children’s movies, I always enjoy finding a film that has a strong theme that appeals to children and adults. (Makes the rare occasion of “movie day” in school sound a little more appealing to parents when I can explain that there is some educational value in the film.) Toy Story of Terror presented a few strong themes that stood out from the start. First, the characters in this movie, similar to all Toy Story films, find themselves in a situation where teamwork is crucial for survival in a sticky situation. The bonds of friendship are present throughout the film as the characters work together to achieve a common goal. The toys work together to encourage one another in times when assistance is not plausible and as a result, the characters find ways to break through tough times.
Another strong theme I encountered was the idea of overcoming fear, specifically in a female character. It is common in society today that we hear more about reaching to encourage, empower, and strengthen young females to accomplish all they hope for. This film encompasses this theme as Jessie, the cowgirl, finds herself having to overcome her fear of being confined to a box- a lingering phobia after a past experience. With courage from a fellow toy she faces her fear in hopes of saving hear dear friend. (I won’t say too much- don’t want to spoil it for you!)
Both themes are encouraging and easy to acknowledge in this tale of friends facing fears and working together to escape the terror in this spooky and thrilling story.
The Toy Story of Terror: Bonus Features
The film includes new characters including Combat Carl, Old Timer, and Transitron. The creators of the film decided it would be an over-the-top experience to include vintage commercials for these new characters during purposeful commercial breaks in this made-for-TV movie. Although the toys are fictional, the commercials were created with the look and feel of real commercials placed during specific times in history. The commercials are entertaining and add to the depth and character of the newly introduced characters in this film.
Like many films, this story includes deleted scenes that were omitted for a variety of purposes. But unlike most films, this film was created for the purpose of being aired on television. This specific purpose meant the creators and editors needed to stick to an extremely tight schedule to allow for commercial breaks in a 30 minute time frame. Not only were unique scenes deleted, but entire ideas had to be cut in order to fit these requirements. You won’t want to miss out on the character who didn’t make the cut!
These include three short films that continue to enhance the individual personalities of our favorite Toy Story characters. Each with their own unique problem to overcome, these short stories will keep you laughing and loving our favorite toys of all times.
Subtitles available in French, Spanish, and English and dubbed in French and Spanish. The film is not-rated, however, it was shown on TV. Released by Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment on August 19, 2014. Run time 22 minutes.
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