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25 Weeks of Pixar: Week 22 Viewing

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This week, we watched the short Lou, Cars 3, and the mini-movie Miss Fritter’s Racing Skoool.

This week’s short is a film called Lou, which has a playground bully as the main character. We watch him as he steals and plays with the other kids’ toys. This makes Lou, a creature made of lost and found items, angry. He intervenes and shows the bully how to behave and treat others with respect. This is a quirky short, but one that I quickly grew more and more fond of as it went on. The animation is beautiful as always, but it is especially fun to watch how the strange character of Lou moves. Whoever designed and animated this character deserves much praise. Though it lacks the emotional depth of some other Pixar shorts, it had a conclusion which I found satisfying and it is something that I look forward to revisiting in the future.

Cars 3, released in 2017, is the third and final entry in the Cars trilogy. Despite being a follow-up to 2011’s Cars 2, it feels more like a continuation of the first film, which was released about 10 years prior to this. The first Cars film and Cars 3 can be watched back to back with ease, without missing anything that Cars 2 provided. These two films are very similar in tone and feel like a great pair. It seems to me almost as if Cars 2, as well as the Cars Toons, are off in an alternate Cars universe that relies only on slapstick and cheap humor. Thematically, Cars 3 could not be more different than the film that came before. With Cars 2 focusing Mater and his spy shenanigans, Cars 3 is a quiet, more retrospective conclusion to the franchise, something I greatly appreciate.

As Lightning McQueen has gotten older, he is slowing down, which puts his career as a racer at risk. How do you know when it is time to give up what you love and pass the torch to the younger generation? This is the question that this movie attempts to answer, and I think does so in a great way. My favorite thing about Cars 3 was the respectful homage to Doc Hudson, Lightning McQueen’s mentor. Paul Newman, the actor who voiced Doc in the original film, died only two years after it was released. Despite this, the filmmakers were able to include some flashback scenes with unused bits of dialogue they could use for these scenes, which added quite a bit of depth to the relationship between McQueen and Doc, and was a welcome way to bring both of their stories full circle. Despite this, there was not much else about the film that stuck out to me. However, I am not the biggest fan of the Cars franchise, so this film wasn’t really made for me anyway. That being said, I did enjoy Cars 3 and I think it is a worthy conclusion to the trilogy.

I wish I could say the same for the mini-movie, Miss Fritter’s Racing Skoool. This short heavily features the new character of Miss Fritter, who is easily my least favorite character in the film. As an advert for her racing school, this short is annoying and pretty much pointless. Do yourself a favor and avoid.

Next week, we will be watching Coco and Dante’s Lunch- A Short Tail.

Happy watching!

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