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Photo courtesy of Disney/Pixar

With a plethora of must-see movies hitting theaters throughout the remainder of the year, it’s not only appropriate to go see these movies but to now review them here at Dirtfork and, for the most part, I’ll stay spoiler free, though I will give warning if there’s something, as to not spoil anything. So, let me just start by saying that I love this franchise.

I have a fond memory of one of the first theater experiences I had, back in elementary school, watching the first Toy Story. Woody and Buzz Lightyear are iconic characters and staples of not just my childhood but the childhood of millions of people throughout the United States. I even went as far as writing “Shane” on the bottom of the foot of my very own Woody and Buzz – so, yes, I loved Toy Story 4. I loved it because it was another part of Woody’s story – which clarifies what the true story has been about all along.

Woody’s constant struggle with finding purpose when seemingly another door closes in his life (something we all can relate to) is his story. That’s the true heart of this whole story, and all of Toy Story, really. Woody is one of the absolute best Disney/Pixar characters of all time and watching this movie play out with Woody being Woody – loyal, caring and searching for meaning – that’s nearly worth the price of admission.

Photo courtesy of Disney/Pixar

I tweeted out that Buzz’s catchphrase “to infinity and beyond” means so much more now – and that has to be one of the best catchphrases from any movie, right? When the line is delivered, it will definitely pull at your heart strings. But not only that, that line to me is all but summation of a toys’ life. Toy Story has made the point abundantly clear here that the toys don’t die, unless someone like Sid destroys and mutilates them, and they are essentially immortal. So, in saying that, wouldn’t you say “to infinity and beyond” is the life of a toy? I think so.

And yes, it is sad – but it’s a different kind of sadness. It’s a good sad. It should be a conclusive ending – although I think you could still make tons of stories out of these characters. I don’t believe most of us thought we’d see Toy Story 4 after the way the third movie ended but this was a pleasant surprise. With the many internet speculations made and even now when you watch the second movie, there is discussion of Woody’s history and even a nod to when he was made in this new chapter. With that being said, I would love to see a prequel.

(SPOILER) Woody doesn’t remember anything before Andy, so this obviously means that he must have had some sort of traumatic experience, though many speculate that Andy’s dad died and was his favorite toy when he was a kid, so it then went to Andy after his dads death. I think seeing where Woody came from, how potentially Andy’s dad or even grandfather got him, would be a great story, one where you could have Woody interacting with toys of that era, which would be the 1950s, presumably. But again, I want to see what made Woody and why he can’t remember his past.

I think it would be a fun story with whatever time period it’s in.

Photo courtesy of Getty Images

We are living in a world where both toys and brick and mortar toy stores are are becoming obsolete. Play off that some. Have a Terminator-like story where the toys are trying to fight for their very existence against technology, maybe even trying to prevent a toy store from closing down.

If this is the one they’re choosing to end on, that’s fine with me. Honestly, less is more and, if they did continue it, it might become dull.

Here’s the final rating:

8.3 out of 10

Next up: Spider-Man: Far From Home