Review: Toy Story 2
4.5 / 5 Stars
The rest of the score is not a rehash of what was presented for the original Toy Story, but is an extension with liberal references to the original themes, orchestration and instrumentation. The story, if you havent seen the film, is that the despicable owner of Als Toy Barn recognizes Woody as a rare collectable doll which he hopes to use to complete his \"set\" to sell to a museum in Japan. This time, the tables are slightly turned from the first movie where Buz Lightyear (along with several returning members of the toy cast) is tasked with retrieving Woody from Al and all the adventures in between. Partaking in some of the great sci-fi references throughout the film, and remembering the marketing blitz of film of not so long ago, the storyline is excellent. This is one of the few films, if not the only one of the year that has lived up to the critics lauding \"this sequel is better than the original.\" With all the great sci-fi references, one of the best ones used in the film is the musical reference that required its own \"disclaimer\" credit at the end of the film, and had me rolling in my seat in laughter (unfortunately the mixed audience who I saw it with didnt seem to get it, or Luxo Jr. for that matter). It is an overall fun film, a lot of gags for adults, and most likely just a nice story for the \"young-ins\" and is definitely worth a first and second trip to the theater.
Randy Newmans score for the film keeps in tradition to both his previous work on Pixar features as well as still paying homage to the animation scoring greats as Stalling and Bradley. There is the typical \"mickey mousing\" of the music during the appropriate scenes such as the characters creeping around and playing around in pure theatrics. Since this is really somewhat Buz centric, you do get some dashes of his flying/hero theme, and also since hes, in a way, doubled, you get twice the music. There are a few passages that are new to add coverage for Stinky Pete the Prospector and Jessie the Cowgirl in Als apartment, but arent as easily recognizable, even with blatant track titling. Overall its a nice album, and is more than adequate for the film, but pre/sequels of this year have let me down a bit and unfortunately its not as wowingly amazing as one would hope, but still better than the other entries in that realm. If you liked the first Toy Story and are a fan of animation from classic Warner Brothers films, youll sure to get a kick out of this.
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