Movie classics – Toy Story (1995)
With Toy Story 3 currently packing out cinemas, we thought it was high time to rewind back to the first instalment in the series, which first hit the silver screen 15 years ago (yeah, that shocked us a little bit too).
Toy Story was a groundbreaking movie for two reasons: first, it was the first film to be made entirely with CGI; second, it was the debut release from Disney’s Pixar studio, which has gone on to become the dominant force in Hollywood animated movies.
While most animated Disney movies are musicals, Toy Story took a different approach. A buddy movie, it focussed on the relationship between two toys, the cowboy doll Woody and the astronaut action figure Buzz Lightyear, voiced by Tom Hanks and Tim Allen respectively.
The tension between these two toys – one old-fashioned, one ultra-modern, both striving for the affections of their owner – kept the film rolling along slickly, while the plot, which revolves the toys becoming lost in the outside world when their owner moves house, was polished to a compelling sheen. Little wonder that the screenplay was nominated for an Oscar.
A supporting cast featuring the voice talents of Hollywood stalwarts such as Don Rickles, John Ratzenberger and R. Lee Ermey provided plenty of memorable comic moments, while Randy Newman’s music (which received two Oscar nods) also shone. The film, which cost $50m in production and marketing, raked in over $360m at the box office, proving that CGI movies could be hugely lucrative.
While Toy Story’s animation techniques have since been taken to new heights by Pixar and other CGI animation studios like Dreamworks, it remains a beautiful looking movie 15 years after its initial release. In fact, Pixar re-released it in cinemas last year remastered in 3D, before releasing its second sequel, appropriately named Toy Story 3, in proper 3D this month.
Toy Story, on Blu-ray for £11 from Amazon