(Note: This is a spoiler-free review.)
Our family has always enjoyed Disney-Pixar movies, and for sure all the “Toy Story” movies. The most recent Toy Story movie, Toy Story 4, came out in 2019, and I reviewed it here. Those all are a must-see, in my opinion.
After having seen all of those movies, I knew I had to see the new movie “Lightyear.” I saw it at an advance screening with my kids and we really enjoyed it. I thought it was a movie for kids and adults alike, with everything a Pixar movie does well.
“Lightyear” is all about Buzz Lightyear, the popular space toy character from all the Toy Story movies. It’s a prequel to the series, as it’s the movie that Andy saw as a kid, which is why he and other kids had the popular Lightyear action figure toy.
Lightyear is edge-of-your-seat fun, nonstop humor, touching moments, and characters discovering the amazing things they can do.
Buzz of course is the star, though Tim Allen did not do the voice in this movie, as he did in all the Toy Story movies. Instead, Chris Evans did his voice, and it worked well. There are also some relatable characters such as a team of imperfect rebels and fighters who despite making mistakes, are just what any leader would want on his or her team.
And our favorite character is definitely Sox the Cat, who by himself is enough reason to see the movie. He is Lightyear’s robot-but-believably-real companion cat whose job it is to care for him and cheer him up after he returns home from each mission. He is HILARIOUS and I totally expect to see Sox the Cat toys in stores soon.
Here’s the synopsis:
From Disney and Pixar comes an animated sci-fi action-adventure — the definitive origin story of Buzz Lightyear (voice of Chris Evans), the hero who inspired the toy. “Lightyear” follows the legendary space ranger on an intergalactic adventure alongside ambitious recruits, Izzy, Mo and Darby, and his robot companion Sox. As this motley crew embark on their toughest mission yet, they must learn to work as a team to escape the evil Zurg and his dutiful robot army who are never far behind.
Is it as good as the Toy Story movies? Is it worth going to?
I think so, as we were ooh-ing and ahh-ing and laughing the whole way through.
What else should you know?
The movie is rated PG, and I would recommend it for kids maybe age 8 and up. It’s probably not best for younger kids as Lightyear’s enemy Zurg and his robots can be dark and scary to some kids.
In addition, the story can be a bit above some kids’ heads. There is time travel throughout the movie and some other plot details and surprises that may be hard for little ones to understand. It doesn’t mean they won’t enjoy it, but parents may need to explain what’s going on.
Also, unfortunately, the movie has been the subject of some controversy even before its release. I didn’t know about it beforehand, but there is a scene with a lesbian couple and they kiss briefly (one of the women is an important character in the movie). It’s at the beginning of the movie (maybe 10 minutes in), and it’s part of a less than a 30-second scene, if even that. The scene is about love and family, and the women are in a committed relationship (they get married and have a child together), so to me, it’s as tasteful as can be for a scene that you don’t typically see in animated family films.
However, it’s a new thing for Disney-Pixar, as gay couples have only been in the background of movies prior. This one puts it front and center, despite it being brief. I do not tell people what to think, but I do feel the need to mention it. (It’s telling that comments are turned off for the trailer – which you can see below – though they’re on for other Pixar trailers.)
But aside from this scene being controversial, the movie was excellent. There are some surprises, and oh- if you see it, be sure to stay until the very end! There are actually THREE additional scenes at the end. Stay until after the credits end to see them all. You will be glad you did!
Watch the trailer here: