Toy Story 3, like its two predecessors, is showing before packed audiences full of happy families at the Miami Ciniplex. With their drink in one hand, popcorn in the other, and 3-D glasses on for the optimal movie experience, the viewers have been waiting for this film. Following in the footsteps of the adored Toy Story and Toy Story 2, Toy Story 3 is a fun-filled movie for all ages.
"It's a family Toy Story mania going all the way back to Toy Story 1!" remarked Jera Rendel, resident of Miami.
Her 10-year-old son, Job added, "Yeah! We've always loved it. We watch the DVD's, and we got to see the double feature at the theater in 3-D."
The Toy Story series has been a household name since the original Toy Story debuted in 1995. The story line follows a group of toys, including a pull-string cowboy doll known as Woody, and Buzz Lightyear, an astronaut action figure. The toys come to life when humans aren't present and show the world the secret life of toys.
"I remember watching Toy Story when it first came out in 1995, when I was 6 or so. I really enjoyed it then," said Miami Ciniplex General Manager Logan Fullerton.
The first movie came out with a small budget of $30 million (or $42 million adjusted for inflation). It was an instant success, earning $191 million ($350 million with inflation) by the end of its box office run. This gave Toy Story the title of the highest grossing animation movie at the box office.
Toy Story 2 wasn't one to be left behind, though, which it made clear in its debut in 1997. Its budget was reported as being $90 million ($118 million adjusted) which was nearly triple the price of the first Toy Story. By time it was moved from theaters, Toy Story 2 had, adjusted for inflation, grossed an average of $385 million.
The latest installment in the series, Toy Story 3, was released on June 18, in digital 3-D. Almost all of the original voice actors were cast for this movie, including Tom Hanks and Tim Allen. However, some new voice actors joined the crew, like Blake Clark and Ned Beatty.
"I was kind of shocked that characters like Bo Peep didn't make an appearance at all," Jera replied when asked about the characters. "I wish they had made a surprise appearance at the end, but oh well."
Toy Story 3 had a budget of $200 million, costing more than eight times the original film. It started making up for this cost opening weekend by making $110.3 million gross, the second highest opening weekend for an animated movie. Toy Story 3 also holds the title for highest grossing opening weekend for a Pixar film, as well as the highest grossing opening weekend for a film to have opened in the month of June.
Toy Story 3 is expected to make great progress in the international box office as it slowly releases into other countries over the next three months, including the United Kingdom. In the end, after toy sales, DVD, and Blu-Ray revenues, Toy Story 3 is estimated to reach well over $1 billion in total gross income.
When asked about the story line of the film, Fullerton said, "It's really about growing up, especially with Andy going to college. The movie is entertaining for children, but I really think it relates more to adults, especially the ending."
As in every Toy Story film, the third movie really revolves around the power of friendship and loyalty. This film follows Woody and the gang as Andy goes to college, and the toys are sent to a daycare center. As bonds are tested and the toys' world is flipped around, it really shows how powerful love can be. It's a wonderful story that will be a great way to subtly introduce children to the idea of growing up and moving on, while at the same time touch the hearts of adults and bring back memories of their own.
"It's just a good story," Jera said with a smile. "It has good family values, and is something the whole family can enjoy."
There have been many cases of a tear or two falling down the cheeks of audiences as the film wraps up, and even more cases of parents running home to break out their old toys and really play with their children again. If there has to be any one film that could touch a person this much, it's no surprise that it's Toy Story 3. The film comes highly recommended, and won't be one to disappoint.
"This is my new favorite movie!" 7-year-old Isaac, exclaimed. "It's good. Amazing good. Super good! Buzz is awesome, I like it when him and Jessie dance at the end."
"My favorite part is when Jessie said 'I know about Buzz's Spanish mode'," 9-year-old Elia said with a shy smile,
Bill Neill, assistant manager of Miami Ciniplex, said, "A lot of people have enjoyed it and said that it was the best Toy Story so far. It has very good animation. Pixar is the best in the field right now, and they show it with Toy Story 3."
Fullerton added, "The 3-D in it is really good. You can tell it was made to be a great movie, and the viewers can tell, too. Every showing we've had has had a good turn-out with no complaints."
When asked what one thing she would say to anyone who hasn't seen the film yet, Jera said, "Look up the Easter Eggs before you go, so you can know what all the hidden messages in the movie are for upcoming Pixar films. Then, just go watch it with your family."
Miami Ciniplex will be showing Toy Story 3 until around July 8, when it will most likely be replaced by Despicable Me. Don't despair, though! Fullerton said there's a possibility they will get it on film and show it in 2-D after that.
"Go watch it now! It won't be showing forever!" Job, Elia, and Isaac exclaimed. "We just hope it comes out on DVD soon, so we can watch it again!"