The long-awaited Disney Pixar Blu-ray transfer of Toy Story, released in the U.K. on Monday and a little later in the month in the U.S. – is a gorgeous delight – probably the best looking back catalogue re-issue I’ve seen from the Mouse so far.
I own them all, and they look incredible, but I think Toy Story is warmer, cosier than the rest. Maybe it’s because I prefer these characters but I just think Toy Story is a little bit brighter and more visually appealing.
The sound is smooth and crisp; from Rex’s dinosaur growl, to the robot’s warning noise, to Randy Newman’s drowning vocals that after all these years can still bring a tear to your eye. It’s a busy movie for noise and special effects but it’s music to your ears when the track is as pristine as this.
No movie released in 1995 will have the timeless picture and sound quality of Toy Story simple because of the technological leaps these guys made in dimensionality 15 years ago – the way it’s completely CGI animated characters interacted with their spacial enviornment, but it’s kinda fascinating that the release carries a trailer for Toy Story 3 and there’s barely any conceivable difference at all.
There’s maybe a slight richness to the new movie but you have to double take to see it. Partly it’s because the characters don’t age or change their physical complexion, so you have to wonder for a moment which movie belongs to the footage you are seeing but it’s also because the flawless Pixar animation style actually makes the image look better for home video, than it ever did as a theatrical release.
The same can be said of Up and Wall*E – as fantastic as they were in cinemas, they actually look better with your Blu-ray set-up.
I’m watching it again as I type this up and Woody’s dilemma of being replaced is distracting me, Buzz’s lack of awareness of what he really is – still heartbreaking. Right now I’m watching Buzz as he discovers he is “Not a flying toy” and it’s so moving.
The script is so smart, so strong – this is the perfect Pixar movie for character interaction and plotting.
Wall*E and Up may have bigger ambitions in storytelling but this is the perfect tale, I think. It’s so satisfying even now when I’m a fully fledged adult, with money, life problems and responsibilities etc, as to when I was 9 years old and fell in love with the characters in the theatre.
I’ve also been sent Toy Story 2 on Blu-ray and I’m eager to delve into this one, possibly the greatest sequel of the past ten years. Christ, it’s actually been 11 years hasn’t it?
Screen captures thanks to DVD Beaver.