Cars 3 Review

Cars 3

I’m not really a car man.

From an early age I was either falling asleep in them, or crashing them.

The go-karting establishments of the Channel Islands just don’t have the safety regulations we enjoy over here.

But when you’re as old as I am, you pick up the odd 6-year-old petrol head along the way – which is how I found myself watching Cars 3 last weekend.

And it turns out I may not be the only one feeling a little long in the tooth.

Lightning McQueen has been the star turn of Pixar’s animated racing circuits for more than a decade now.

With his innate desire to race and trademark red paint job, McQueen broke all the records to become the number one racer of his generation.

But there’s a storm coming, and his name is Jackson.

Jackson Storm is the latest cab off the racing car production line, and he sports all the newest technological advances known to vehicle-kind.

In other words, he’s stronger and faster than ol’ Lightning McQueen.

Pretty soon the racing circuit is awash with these next gen racers, consigning older cars to automotive history and leaving Lightning McQueen facing his greatest battle yet.

Will Lightning be able to keep up with Storm and the rest of his thunderbolt generation, or has McQueen just been around the racing block once too often?

Cars 3 is my introduction to this automobile arm of Pixar’s animated arsenal, and I found it lagged behind compared to this studio’s most famous creations like Toy Story or Wall-E.

The problem with animated cars is they’re kind of one dimensional – they can go fast or they can go slow, and that’s about it.

It’s far harder to humanise them too; while they may have faces, their literal lack of limbs limits what they can do and the scenarios you can put them in.

Of course, I’m not the target audience for this film – that’d be my nephew and his generation, and he thought this was amazing.

Then again, he’s got a Lightning McQueen duvet set, so may be a little impartial.

No doubt Cars 3 will be a winner with its main audience, and its positive message for equal opportunities is worthy enough to pass on to children.

And there are plenty of jokes about getting old for whoever’s taking any kids along for the ride.

But Cars 3 doesn’t quite take the chequered flag in Pixar’s uber competitive animated field.

Jonathan Campbell

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July 2017
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