(No major spoilers ahead.)
The toys are back in town – for the fourth and what looks like the final time. Since the first movie came out in 1995, the adventures of Woody, Buzz Lightyear and all the other toys have enthralled kids and adults all over the globe, me included. They’ve seen their owner, Andy, grow into a young man and start off at college. Now they’ve got a new kid, Bonnie, who first appeared in the third movie.
Continuing on from where the third movie left off, Bonnie is getting ready for her first day at school. While she’s initially reluctant to let her parents go off without her, Woody has trailed along to help her settle in. She even makes a new friend – literally – in the form of Forky, a spork with googly eyes, a pipe cleaner for arms, and lolly sticks for feet.
As a special treat, Bonnie’s parents take her on a road trip to celebrate the last week of the summer holidays before school really starts. The toys all come along as well, even Forky. Along the way, they stop off at a carnival, where the real adventure for the toys begins…
Most of you were probably wondering where Bo Peep, one of the main characters in the series, was getting up to during the third movie, as she seemed strangely absent. I was also wondering this as well, until it turns out she was in an antiques store the entire time! Even Woody is surprised to see her again, and she comments that it’s been seven whole years that she’s been wasting away her life on that lamp. Her sheep make a comeback as well.
As with every movie to date, new friends join in the familiar ensemble of Woody, Buzz, Hamm, Slinky, Mr. and Mrs. Potato Head, and Jessie. This is probably why Toy Story seems to be immune to ‘sequelitis’, as so many other film franchises seem to have fallen for – they introduce new characters to keep things fresh and new, while keeping the faces we all know and love for that sense of familiarity.
This may be the end to 25 years of the actual story of Toy Story (can you believe it?), rest assured: as Buzz always says, “To infinity and beyond!”