Toy Story; the movie that showed the world how computer generated imagery could be used to feature a engrossing narative.
Woody is a cowboy toy who belongs to a young boy named Andy. Being his favorite toy since kindergarten, Woody's world changes when for his eighth birthday he is given a Buzz Lightyear action figure, a toy that instantly moves Woody to the Toy chest, away from his normal place on-top of his bed. Stricken with jealously - yes toys feel this it would seem - Woody concocts a plan to rid his life of this annoying toy - who also believes he is not a children's play thing and is in fact the real Buzz Lightyear. When his plan knocks the other toy out of the window, Woody is believed by the other toys to be a monstrous murderer. When Woody is taken out with the family for dinner, a fight breaks out between him and Buzz and in the commotion they are left behind. Seeking any way of being returned to his owner, Woody hitches a ride with a delivery van who is returning to Pizza Planet (the place his owners are going). In this strange place however, the two stumble into a toy receiving robot and are claimed by Andy's disturbed child neighbor Sid, a boy who enjoys destroying and exploding toys. To return to their rightful place the two toys must first learn to be friends and then use a cunning ploy to get back across the street, all before the family moves house in two days.
This narrative is a strong as any other Pixar produced movie. Making the comparison to those in work who lose their places to new recruits, the feeling could feel very strong for anyone who has been put into a similar position. The inclusion of polar opposite children, in regards to the way they look after toys, brings about a nice way of introducing a antagonist to the mix. The chemistry between the two main characters, which plays and adapts throughout the run time, allows the film to feel full with characters having very human traits. With key plot points and exhilarating sequences that will keep children glued to their sets, 'Toy Story' is very much a film that many people will enjoy and which rightly so marked Pixar as company that can only get better.
Tom Hanks and Tim Allen portray Woody and Buzz respectively. They give full characteristics to their roles and like many other animation voice work, seem tailored to deliver the roles in the correct manner. The fact that the studio managed to use both a television actor who was in multiple shows as well as a Hollywood star who was at the top of the showbiz world, only shows how much aim the company had in the early stages of their development. Giving the toys very adult emotions, they could have become annoying, but with the way that the toys voices seem friendly this is never the case. This film also marks the first time that John Ratzenberger has spoken a role in a Pixar movie, as Ham the piggy bank, and marked the first of many - he has featured in every Pixar movie since too.
The soundtrack that was used in this film was written and sung by Randy Newman, and like many factors about this film, completely feels a part of this production. Fitting in and adding the feeling the characters are having at the present time of the story, the songs give alot of emotion over that is added by human characteristics that are shown on screen. His inclusion marked the first time that the soundtrack was added to a Pixar film, a theme that has been achieved in all latter installments. When compared to the animation that is produced today however, Toy Story falls a little bit short in what it achieves. This is down to the fact that it is fairly old and technology has advanced but could mean that children will not find to much interest in some factors the creators have produced - humans do not look natural in presentation, opting for more creepy and weird shapes than organic. Some parts still carry through to todays standard but also alot is lacking. Showing age a little bit, but having more than enough in other aspects that keep it fully relevant to todays audiences as well as those who have an affinity with the material.
Toy Story that kickstarted a new median of storytelling with a great force marking the studio as the founder fully in its path. Holding many characteristics of previous Disney movies as well as beginning those who are featured in Pixar's, this film is one that will entertain and engross people of all ages. Showing a bit of age in its presentation, the narrative and voice work still holds the film together throughout its duration.