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Movie Review: ‘Cars 3’ is great for family movie night, but nothing special

by Matt Roseboom

Cruz Ramirez (voice of Cristela Alonzo), left, and Lightning McQueen (voice of Owen Wilson) in “Cars 3”.

By Quinn Roseboom

The third installment in the Cars universe puts the focus back on Lightning McQueen (Owen Wilson) and his career in racing, and converts the protagonist of the second movie, Mater (Larry the Cable Guy) back into the comic relief he was made to be. There was no mention of anything about Mater’s secret agent adventures, or any of the events from the second movie.

“Cars 3” begins with a montage of Lightning’s successful racing career, and eventually introduces a new generation of race cars which are engineered and trained with the newest technology. The new cars have higher top speeds, making Lightning have to push himself to the limits of his capability, until he eventually pushes himself too far and crashes.

After taking a break in Radiator Springs, McQueen’s friends persuade him to stop moping around and start training again. This takes Lightning to a brand new state-of-the-art training facility owned by the new owner of his sponsor, Rust-eze. The rest of the story focuses on Lightning’s training, guided by his new trainer, Cruz Ramirez (Cristela Alonzo). She’s a younger wanna-be racer who’s up with the times and a self-proclaimed fantastic motivator.

The general consensus between our group was that this installation was better than “Cars 2”, but not as good as the original. We saw it in 3D, but it really wasn’t necessary. But the animation was amazing and the landscapes looked extremely realistic, especially when the “camera” was far enough away from the characters so they looked like normal cars (without eyes).

“Lou” Review
The new Pixar short “Lou” plays before the feature. It was extremely enjoyable and pulled on the heartstrings – just as we’ve all come to expect from Pixar shorts. It tells the tale of a creature that lives in a kindergarten playground made up of children’s lost objects. The box he lives in reads “ost and F nd” with the letters L OU missing, giving the short and title character it’s name. It’s a great addition and I wish I could watch it again, without having to see “Cars 3” another time.

• “Cars 3” is rated G and runs almost two hours long. There is one end credit scene.

In The Parks
You can meet the characters from the Cars universe in their home of Radiator Springs at Cars Land at Disney California Adventure. You can also meet Cruz Ramirez there, as well as in Pixar Place at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

For another take on the movie, here’s our video review from Tiffany Mink:

Movie Review: Disney•Pixar's Cars 3

Click here to read how the “Cars 3” filmmakers brought humanity back to the franchise.

Click here to read about the making of the “Lou” short.

Here’s a look at the movie premiere:

Disney•Pixar's Cars 3 red carpet movie premiere in Anaheim

We show you around the Cars 3 Road to the Races tour on “Attractions Magazine – The Show”:

Attractions - The Show - Cars 3 Road to the Races; The Color Run; latest news - March 30, 2017

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