Swanner: In Cars 3, Lightning McQueen does something he’s not used to doing. He loses. With a flock of new and younger cars coming into the race circuit, McQueen must face the fact that he may be done with racing forever. Not the storyline I expected from the Cars franchise. The earlier movies have been geared for the kids, with silly characters and simple storylines, so retirement seems like a big step. Surprisingly, it’s not.
I had to remember, this is Pixar we’re talking about so there’s always a plan. It’s never been a secret that the Cars movies were all about the merchandising. The first two movies made over 8 billion dollars in overall merchandising, so there had to be more of them. Knowing that, in this new film, not only is McQueen contemplating retirement, but we also get introduced to a new group of characters… Are we talking Cars 4? Of course we are, keep up.
I’ll admit I walked in ready to dislike this film the way I’ve disliked previous Cars movie, but surprise, this one was talking to me. That’s not to say this isn’t a kids movie. It’s as much of a kids movie as any of the Pixar classic films have been, but they finally found a way to entertain everyone. Director Brian Fee makes sure there are still enough bells and whistles to keep the younger kids distracted, but there’s finally a storyline the adults can relate to. I’m not getting all giddy here, but I’m saying I didn’t hate the film. I actually liked it. Now, I’m not going to be the first person in line to see it again, but if you’re the adult dragged to see this film, it’s going to be okay.
Swanner: 2 1/2 stars