Review: Toy Story 4

There was undeniably no reason to make a fourth film following the trilogies full-circle ending nine years ago. Yet, as it turns out, we needed its embrace full of warmth and familiarity. A heartfelt reminder of why we fell in love with the Toy Story franchise and everything it has to offer.

In 2010, Toy Story 3 wrapped up nicely with Woody, Buzz, and the rest of the gang finding a new home with a little girl named Bonnie after their original kid, Andy, grew up. The story felt complete and well-rounded, but like life, it goes on, even for toys. So here we go again, embarking on a road trip full of friendship, adventure, and growth with Toy Story 4.

Woody (voice of Tom Hanks) has always known his purpose, and with that, his priority in being there for his kid no matter what. The beginning of the film sees Woody sneak to school with Bonnie in case she needs help getting through her first day. There, she creates an unusual craft project, Forky (voice of Tony Hale), who funnily enough is a spork. Once Forky awakens, he suffers from an existential crisis, declaring himself “trash” and not a toy. Woody quickly realizes he needs to show Forky how to embrace being the most important thing in Bonnie’s world. This turns out to be a troubling task, especially after the gang heads out on a family road trip.

The continuation reintroduces us to old friends, alongside new engaging characters who keep the story fresh. Forky is without a doubt the star of Toy Story 4 and may just be the best Toy Story character of all time. The angsty utensil is a big mood and will capture every viewers heart almost immediately after hitting the screen. That is, if he isn’t already there. Additionally, Ducky (voice of Keegan-Michael Key) and Bunny (voice of Jordan Peele), the cuddly carnival stuffed animals are soon-to-be fan favourites with their wild imaginations.

It’s rare that a series can release this many movies of quality without taking an accidental tumble, but Toy Story 4 is an exception to the rule. The film is genuine, funny, and continuously resonates with its audience by bringing out the inner child we all have within. Disney/Pixar knows how to stir our emotions every time. These exist to delight children, give adults a sense of nostalgia, and teach both about the importance of friendship and loyalty.

You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, and most importantly, it will have you wishing for even more. Maybe this time they should stop while ahead, as painful as it is to say. The only shame would be seeing this magical franchise fade away.