Toy Story 3

08/08/2010 at 10:33 AM (Movies) (, , , , , , )

Toy Story 3 is Pixar’s latest instalment of the story that introduced us to Woody (Tom Hanks) and Buzz (Tim Allen). With Andy having turned seventeen and being ready to go to college, the toys finally decide it is unlikely he will ever be play with them again and find the prospect of being donated to Sunnyside Daycare where children will play with them far more appealing than being relegated to the cosy but lonely attic.

Woody tries to discourage them from pursuing this course of action but their misguided anger at Andy for a simple accident of circumstance gets in the way and leads to unfortunate consequences when they place their trust in welcoming teddy bear, Lotso (Ned Beatty), who happens to be hiding his true colours.


Luckily for the toys, they find some unexpected allies who help them to defeat the villainous bear with the help of Woody who returns to rescue his friends and finally end up finding a suitable home at Bonnie’s (Emily Hahn) where they are treated with love.

The dialogue between Ken (Michael Keaton) and Barbie (Jody Benson), Molly’s rejected toy, who hit it off on meeting are a highlight and will have you in stitches while Buzz in his Spanish mode makes for an interesting romantic development between him and Jessie (Joan Cusack) so humour is ever present and allows for some light-heartedness.

Toy Story 3 is the most perilous adventure the toys have been on to date as it is at its most dramatic and darkest and the final climactic moment makes for one very sentimental scene leading you to wonder how toys that once belonged to us and were treasured so lovingly, then got dispatched and promptly forgotten. It is far more likely you’ll see the adults get touched at the heartstrings way more than the children.

With Toy Story 3, Pixar takes the audience on a journey back to their childhood and powerfully reminds them of what it was like back when they were innocent, free and dared to dream to infinity and beyond.

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Mao’s Last Dancer

08/05/2010 at 4:59 PM (Books, Fable, Inspired) (, , , , , , )

Having finally received the overwhelmingly popular Mao’s Last Dancer from the Port Phillip Library in St. Kilda, I started to read it and having gone in with optimistic expectations (although this is a practice I tend to avoid with a writer/director unfamiliar to me in most situations) ended up rather underwhelmed despite its obvious merits. Even the movie of the same name by Bruce Beresford seemed to lack the fanfare it could have had even though both the autiobiography of Li Cunxin and film adaptation were compelling and heartwarming.

It just seemed to touch on things that seemed to be unnecessary waffle since it could have been more engaging than it already is if it had not drifted from new topic to another so fast but considering the sales figures of global success and print runs, all’s well that ends well.

Source: Penguin

Source: Penguin

Perhaps the story was not exotic enough to me. I used to take ballet until I hit puberty and grew a generous-sized bust (Have you ever seen a ballerina with an ample chest – I didn’t think so) .Meanwhile I also grew up in a country full of poverty, political conflict and corruption so even though my homeland had nothing to do with communism, the story of the boy plucked from obscurity to be a ballet star that then found an escape in the world of te West touched on common themes and should have resonated but while i enjoyed the recollections and fables, I didn’t even shed a tear since I was not emotionally moved as I’d be by any Thomas Hardy classic.

Maybe they broke the mould when I was born or maybe its the fact I’m far too familiar with  government systems of leadership which claim to be democratic but are manipulative enough to control and confine the lives of citizens to achieve their own ends.

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