The first Toy Story premiered in 1995. I was in fourth grade. I could not get enough of it and with each passing movie I loved them even more. I grew up with these characters, with their stories, with their adventures. I was among the masses that said a Toy Story 4 should NOT have been made. We’ll talk about everything in this honest parent review Disney Pixar’s newest animated film. No spoilers! #ToyStory4. May contain commissioned links.
Toy Story 4 Movie Review | Should You Go See It? #ToyStory4
Disclosure: I was invited to the Toy Story 4 Press Junket to screen Toy Story 4 before the films release. No monetary compensation was provided for my participation or for this review.
I was highly skeptical when Disney Pixar announced another Toy Story sequel because I thought Toy Story 3 ended so perfectly (side note: I actually don’t like Toy Story 3. More on that later.) It closed the book on the Toy Story series and I didn’t see any loose ends that had to be tied off. So does this sequel take things too far? Is this just another way for Pixar to fill in a gap on their calendar? In this Toy Story 4 Movie Review | Should You Go See It?, I’m talking visuals, the story, my full G rating breakdown, and sharing whether all kids should see this film. I’m giving my no spoiler parent review you’ll want to read before you fall in love with Forky too soon.
Before Toy Story 4 even came out with their first official trailer release, people were talking about the animation style. It’s true, Andy’s look has completely changed from how we remember him in the other 3 films. I’m honestly not sure why they had another artist design Andy’s look to what we see in Toy Story 4. He’s definitely different and I didn’t like it. Other than that, the visuals are spectacular, as expected. Disney and Pixar always goes above and beyond. From the fur on Bunny to Bo’s shiny porcelain skin – it’s perfect.
The problem with most movies now-a-days is that you can pretty much get the whole story from the trailers. I am happy to report that with Toy Story 4 that’s not the case. We meet lots of new characters in the film posters and trailers but thankfully, Pixar didn’t give away too many details.
I’ll admit, I was a bit confused by the purpose of the new characters but they fit in great and help tell a great story. You’ll meet at least six new toys throughout the movie. Thankfully, it is not overwhelming and each one serves a great purpose to the story.
the G rating
Is Toy Story 4 safe for kids? Thinking back to Toy Story 3, I was nervous if 4 would be safe for kids. I do not like the actual story of Toy Story 3. Lotso running Sunnyside Daycare like a prison then trying to kill the toys at the end, Big Baby’s scenes freak me out, the other toys acting like prison guards. I just could not get behind that movie… until the end when we meet Bonnie. Even that had a G rating so what does that mean for Toy Story 4? Let’s break it down.
Violence – While we don’t see a big bear trying to burn toys alive, there is some mild violence in Toy Story 4. There are a few suspenseful sequences for younger audiences that include a few scary foot-chase scenes, animals with creepy/glowing eyes, and a “dream” about crushing and chasing people.
Adult-theme – I honestly did not notice anything of the sort. I will update this one I see the film again upon release. There are a lot of scenes with creepy dolls. The dolls have a lot of screen time through the back half of the film which may produce some nightmares for sensitive kiddos.
Language – No actual swear words were used in the film! Woohoo! Although, the use of the word “idiot” was used once in a derogatory manner . It was honestly unnecessary and didn’t need to be in the film. Also, the phrase “fluff that!” was said by Bunny at one point. If your kids have heard the actual swear word used then they could probably piece together what Bunny actually wanted to say. If they don’t hear swear words then I’m sure it’ll go over their head and won’t remember it.
Do I think Toy Story 4 needed to be added to the franchise? After seeing the movie I can wholeheartedly say yes. If I wasn’t laughing, I was crying. My kids- 14, 8, and 5, all enjoyed it thoroughly as well. There are great messages in the film about acceptance, the quest for love and happiness, overcoming fears, dealing with change, and insecurities. The balance between the core messages, mild violence, and introducing us to new characters was perfectly placed. All the questions I didn’t know I had were answers. An ending I didn’t know I needed. It’s all perfectly laid out for you in Toy Story 4.
At 1 hr 40 min you might experience your wiggle worm get bored so it could be best to wait until the movie hits Disney+ or Blu-Ray. I will say, if you have kiddos younger than 7 that are sensitive to violence I would definitely screen the film first before taking them.