Tag Archives: Tom Hanks

Potted Film Review: Toy Story 4 (2019)

Starring: Tom Hanks, Tim Allen, Annie Potts, Keanu Reeves

Toy_Story_4_posterWhat’s it all about?
As per the events of Toy Story 3, Woody and the rest of the gang now live with Bonnie, but she is about to begin kindergarten and Woody is concerned that the experience will be difficult for her. It is here that we are introduced to the newest character – Forky, a suicidal plastic spork whom Bonnie adores.

While Woody is encouraging Forky to integrate himself with the group, he lays everything down to find an old friend who has been lost for years. His selfishness results in Forky being kidnapped, and – with the help of some new faces – Woody needs to devise a plan to rescue him in order to bring him back to Bonnie.

The final act – which I will not spoil here – is an emotional ride in which you will not only forget these are toys, but that this whole thing has been computer generated. These characters prove once again that nobody does animated heart and soul quite like Pixar.

Watching it with the kids…
As with all the Toy Story movies (and everything that Pixar does) this is superficially for children, but there’s always a deeper theme aimed at adults.

It takes a lot to elicit an emotional response from me at the cinema, so bravo to the writers, animators, and performers of Toy Story 4. It’s a great movie, but is it the best iteration of Pixar’s flagship series? I don’t think so. It has a similar feel to the third entry, and – although Woody has always been the main star – here he takes up more screen time than ever before, at the expense of everyone else that we have come to know and love. It’s absolutely fine, but it sometimes feels more like a solo spin-off movie than a true ensemble sequel.

Recommended (highly) ↑

Monday Movie Mentions #28…

The Money Pit (1986)

2167f2aa90c5cc4628856c75248991a99821388aLooking at Tom Hanks’ output over the last twenty years or so, a new viewer to his work would be forgiven for thinking he was always middle of the road. It’s difficult to appreciate that he started his career playing in broad comedies like The Money Pit. In fact, he was one of Hollywood’s biggest comedy stars of the eighties. And he was damn good at it too.

Tom Hanks and Shelley Long play Walter and Anna, and Alexander Gudunov steals almost every scene he is in as Anna’s narcissistic ex-boyfriend. Walter and Anna buy a dream house cheaply to start their life together, but as it falls apart around them it soon becomes apparent why the house had such a low price.

The Money Pit was one of my mum’s favourite movies – certainly the comedy that I heard her laugh at the most. I must have seen it a dozen times when I was a kid – many times with my mum – and she laughed as hard the twelfth time as she did the first. She has the preternatural ability to extract almost the same value from every viewing: it’s like some kind of cinematic amnesia. I envy that, because with something as funny as The Money Pit it would be great to have that first experience back again.