on 26 March 2010
So so happy to see this one availible again and amazed its in the BOGOF section - its been hard to get for so long!
One of the finest Disney 'modern' animation tales, Toy Story tells of Andy's toys, who ARE real (!) and their new addition Buzz (I'm a Space Ranger) Lightyear.
The story has many tales of danger, jealousy, hilarity, teamwork and peril, but ultimately it is a story about friendship (cue song 'you've got a friend in me...........').
Totally superb in every way, a classic, and enjoyable by all ages. We first had this when my now 19 year old was 4. She still loves it. As does her sister aged 3.
Buy this, and buy another for keeps. You just can't go wrong. 5 * although I'd give stars to infinity - and beyond!!!!
I've been a proud owner of the original '10th Anniversary Edition' DVD of Toy Story for some time, but had been contemplating whether a purchase of this new Special Edition was actually worth while or, indeed, necessary. These CGI romps from Pixar tend to have less resell value given that they don't require meticulous restoring like traditional animations, yet aside from an obvious love for the film, a few of other thoughts helped my choice.
(1) All of the latest Disney/Pixar 'classics' are now available in Blu-Ray + DVD combo-packs. In some respects, this is almost like getting the DVD free as the current RRP's don't increase significantly from any other standalone Blu-Ray film you might get, which makes these combo-packs excellent value.
(2) The included DVD can be lent to family and friends while you indulge yourself in the benefits of Blu-Ray, along with your cheeky grin. You could even take this DVD out to other locations if you didn't want to damage your Blu-Ray disc, or if you're clever enough, rip it to your computers Hard Drive as an .MP4 and copy it to any number of digital media players.
(3) All new Disney DVD's/Blu-Rays come with 'Disney Movie Reward' points - a code that is printed on a little slip of paper in the case. Trust me, it doesn't take long to build these up and get a nice free product in return for all your purchases! Quite right too, Disney.
The trailers have finally been refreshed slightly, too. 'Dumbo' has been dropped, as that has obviously already been released (see 'Dumbo' review) The full 'Toy Story 3' trailer is up, which shows content from the final movie (which, I must say, looks fabulous!). You can also access more trailers from the main menu and, surprise surprise, 'Fantasia' is finally previewed, though we only get a cut-down version of the trailer while the U.S get the full version. As usual, they must be more special in some way...
Get on with it Tom - What about the film? Well, all I can say is hang your head in shame if you've never seen Toy Story. In many respects, this film could be comparable to the importance of 'Snow White' - it was, after all, 'only' the first full-length computer animated film, making me question even more why it doesn't have a 'Diamond Edition' status. The film is a tale that reflects the secret lives of a group of toys living in Andy's bedroom, who un-beknowingly to the young boy, come to life when humans aren't around. So then, what is a toys worst nightmare? Special occasions! Or in this films case, Andy's Birthday party. This is an Operation for the Bucket-Of-Soliders, who plan to send back to Andy's room detailed information on what new toys Andy has received, hoping they won't be 'replaced' by a superior product. But as it happens, Andy's favourite Cowboy doll 'Woody' (Tom Hanks) is in for a shock as the latest 'Buzz Lightyear' action figure (Tim Allen), in all his gadget laiden glory, makes a confusing entrance to the world of the toys...
As an owner of the previous DVD, I can base my comparisons on this very product, though I should make it known that because this film was obviously computer generated, the resulting film is essentially the same to the eye. The Special Edition DVD included in this pack looks exactly the same to the 10th Anniversary Edition, but I wouldn't suggest that I've lost out - the DVD comes free after all.
But when it comes to the Blu-Ray, we begin to see a vast array of changes that makes this one of the most impressive High Definition titles I've experienced to date, surpassing all my expectations.
The most obvious enhancement is that the colour timing provides a far more vivid picture - one genuinely killer attribute of Blu-Ray technology. The second difference is the clarity, which provides a pixel-perfect reproduction of every texture within the film. Without wanting to sound dramatic (it happens...), this is sensational viewing after long, lost memories of the original Theatre release.
The increase in definition has an interesting side-effect though, as the viewer can note how much simpler the computer rendering is compared to the modern efforts of Pixar, such as 'UP'. Many textures in particular environments lack a bit of depth, such as the wood 'grain' on Sid's workbench. Yet in the very same scene, the effect of the water droplets from the rain sliding down his window is just beautiful from a film of this age.
Its a shame to have to come to it, but the product is flawed when it comes to Extra Features. Disney-Pixar have a had a chance to refresh their documentaries and bonus material, yet the final outcome is disappointing. Despite a separate category for 'Classic DVD' features, the new HD content lacks any real information about the creation of the film, and is instead geared towards silly graphics and short stories. It's quite obvious that with the arrival of Toy Story 3 this summer, Disney-Pixar have decided to use this release as a means to promote the film even further, with the very first 'documentary' on the list being a 'Sneak Preview' of Toy Story. Thats not why I bought this product...
In short however, there really is no better time to buy this film than now. The combo-pack is a great deal if you don't have a Blu-Ray player, given that for the extra two or three quid, you are essentially being prepared for the future, should you decide to invest in HD technology (which is constantly becoming cheaper). The film itself is an outright classic and truly deserves more acclaim than the 'Extras' care to provide.
Like Toy Story? Check out the sequel - a rarity in that it manages to live up to the original!
Cowboy doll Woody is Andy's favorite toy, and as part of that comes the privilege of being the leader of all the other toys. His world is suddenly turned upside down when Andy gets a Buzz Lightyear action figure for his birthday. Suddenly, Woody finds himself in danger of being replaced as Andy and all the toys flock to Buzz. Worse yet, Buzz doesn't know he's a toy. He thinks he's the real Buzz Lightyear. But when the two toys get lost a couple days before Andy moves, they'll have to work together to get home. Can Woody work with Buzz when they don't have the same goal?
I can't believe it's been ten years since this movie came out. It's had an immeasurable impact on the animation field and movies in general. At the same time, its flaws are evident. The humans look as plastic as the toys, and the fur on the dog is laughable. Computers have come a long way in ten years.
Whether this movie was any good or not, it would have been an important milestone. Fortunately, it succeeds on an entertainment level as well. The story is masterfully told revealing plot points and character equally. The movie is extremely funny as well; with lots of jokes for the adults in the audience and some classic lines I quote all the time. Plus it introduces us to a Pixar staple, the climax that will not quit.
Pixar has released great DVD's from the start, and this two-disc set is no different. The movie is transferred directly from the digital files, so the picture is perfect. Sound is wonderful in two separate 5.1 surround tracks. Many of these extras are from the Ultimate Toy Box release of a few years ago, and they are well worth having. The commentary is very informative. The deleted scenes are interesting, but it's obvious why they were deleted. The new features looking back at the movie from ten years later are wonderful as well.
This is a ground breaking movie that is just as much fun to watch as it is historic. I hadn't watched it in quite some time and was reminded just how fun it is. I've got to watch it more often.
Toy Story is directed by John Lasseter who also co-writes the story with a whole host of other people! It features the voices of Tom Hanks, Tim Allen, Don Rickles, Jim Varney, Annie Potts, Wallace Shawn, John Ratzenberger and Laurie Metcalfe. Music is by Randy Newman.
The first feature-length film animated entirely by computer, there's not a lot that can be said now that hasn't been said before about Toy Story, both as a film of heart and substance, and as regards its importance in the world of animation. Two further sequels would follow, both enormously successful and both equally as enjoyable. But it began here in 95, where Woody, Buzz and the gang operated on a level that beguiled the children whilst simultaneously bringing knowing laughs to the accompanying adults. Pixar paint a vivid colourful world, bringing us down to the toys level and etching in emotive threads about jealousies, friendships, neuroses' and the relationship between a child and his toys, while youthful splendour bathes the film constantly. Even though the plot is simple in terms of ambition, the characterisations are substantial and the film never panders to political correctness. The voice work of the actors is terrific, especially Hanks and Allen as Woody and Buzz respectively, their vocal comedy ticks wonderfully bring life to the animated figures, while Newman adds his optimistic tunes into the mix.
Never maudlin or cheesy with its messages and sombre moments (something some other Disney films can't lay claim too), Toy Story's only crime is being too short at an hour and fifteen minutes (both subsequent sequels would rectify this issue). But it's a small complaint, probably (in my case) born out by greed for a longer adventure involving these marvellous creations. This was the start of a beautiful friendship for many, up there on the screen, and here in our own lives, thank you Pixar, you knocked it out of the park with this one, a film for all that keeps on giving delights with each subsequent revisit. 9.5/10
on 22 May 2014
I obviously understand that this is now an old film, and a Pixar Classic. When releasing the third instalment it was made to be viewed in 3D, but the original two films were not. I found that this and the second film in 3D was poor. The picture quality was fantastic in blu-Ray but the 3D only slightly enhances the picture. We could watch this without the 3D glasses and therefore it doesn't really add anything to your viewing pleasure. If I were you I would buy the first two films in blu-Ray and the third in 3D as the 3D in that is perfect.
3D aside, the film is brilliant, I enjoyed my blast back to my childhood. It really is a fun film for all the family, people old and young will enjoy this film, it really is a classic.