Director: Brian Fee
It's Pixar's 18th feature length film and a directorial debut for Brian Fee, whose experience extends beyond WALL•E, Cars and Ratatouille with John Lasseter handing the keys over, who's currently working on Toy Story 4.
I'm actually shocked at this being over ten years on from the first race. Which makes me think about the target audience. It's clearly still for children, being family orientated, but I'm thinking of the young kids who saw the first Cars movie back in 2006, imagining that they were 6 at the time, or maybe even 10, which would make them 16/20 now. I suppose the same goes for Toy Story, and it's a great way of enticing the children of today into the world of Pixar. This doesn't diminish the film in any way. It was just a thought I had.
Don't know about the rest of you, but Cars 2, whilst still remaining to be entertaining, disappointed me slightly by being focused mostly on Mater. And it seems they have mimicked Ocean's and Hang Over by returning to the home ground that made them famous in the first place. So it's back to focusing on Lightening McQueen and Mater takes a back seat quite firmly, as with many of the other original characters, making way for some new additions.
It's a echo of the first in terms of story, having parallels the first Cars movie, coming round full circuit. McQueen is now who Doc was, older, outdated and lagging behind the new rookies entering the raceway. It also reminded me very much of Days of Thunder with some scenes almost being carbon-fibre copied. You can see Fee's admiration of the American racing world and I wonder if Days Of Thunder was an influence.
Being the McQueen he is, he doesn't want to retire to the garage just yet and feels like there still enough race in him to still win and beat the newer, hybrid cars. Namely Jackson Storm, who is perfectly voiced by Armie Hammer, pulling off that cocky, smug rookie so well. Cruz Ramirez has the honour of training McQueen, thus introducing a new and fresh friendship, however, she started to remind me a little too much of Nemo's Dory.
There's plenty of Pixar touches and hidden gems, like Lewis Hamilton providing his voice again and the use of Paul Newman's deleted stories from the making of the 2006 Cars which actually helped bolster the emotional connection to the film. It's actually slightly unpredictable which might be caused by my assuming influences behind the movie.
It has the character of the Cars movies and does have a strong feel-good element. I think fans of the series will enjoy it, but maybe the now order ones won't cars as much.
Running Time: 7
The Cast: 7
Job Description: 7
The Extra Bonus Point: 0