review by Bobby Blakey
Pixar continues to unleash some of the best animated features around. Outside of their new original films they have a few that have spawned franchises but none seemingly as much as 2006s Cars. Since its incredible debut it has spawned not only a sequel, but also a spin-off with Planes. The first trailer that was released for this new chapter was kind of dark, but eventually fans got to see a bit more familiar territory. Could this latest chapter return the franchise to what made it great or will it skid into the wall before crossing the finish line?
Cars 3 follows the legendary Lightning McQueen who is suddenly pushed out of the sport he loves after he is blindsided by a new generation of blazing-fast racers. To get back in the game, he will need the help of an eager young race technician, Cruz Ramirez, with her own plan to win, plus inspiration from the late Fabulous Hudson Hornet and a few unexpected turns. Proving that #95 isn’t through yet will test the heart of a champion on Piston Cup Racing’s biggest stage! This third chapter in the series features a great voice cast of both returning and new voices including Owen Wilson, Larry the Cable Guy, Armie Hammer, Cristela Alonzo, Nathan Fillion, Bonnie Hunt, Kerry Washington, Cheech Marin, John Ratzenberger and Tony Shalhoub. Like most, I was not a big fan of the direction of the second film so going in I was more in the camp of being over this franchise, but glad to say that it pit moved me right back around and back on track.
This film does a great job and returning the franchise to the roots of the first film while evolving the characters in fun new ways. They smartly looked at what worked and used it again, but made sure to take them in some new directions that are fun and interesting to see. The animation is gorgeous as always, but in 4K is even better. The vibrant colors and landscapes fused with the fast pace of the racing makes it a feast for the senses. I really felt like I was back watching the first film again and it is a ton of fun. They took a big chance with pushing the popular Mator to the back of the story in a more cameo role instead of featured comedy relief and it was a great choice. I love Larry the Cable Guy, but this franchise should needed a shake up and the direction it went was perfect.
If you enjoyed the first film in the series you will no doubt love this one too. It made a great evolution and offered up a great ending to the franchise or a new beginning depending on where they decide to take it. Start your engines and grab your copy of Cars 3 available now on 4K Ultra, Blu-ray and DVD.