Toy Story 3
What if an alien in the future stumbled upon Toy Story 3? Welcome to Earthling Cinema, where we examine the last remaining artifacts of a once-proud culture
Toy Story 3 (2010) | Directed by: Lee Unkrich | Starring: Tom Hanks, Tim Allen, Joan Cusack
Written by: Ben Steiner
Analysis & Directed by: Jared Bauer
Starring: Mark Schroeder (https://twitter.com/mark_schroeder)
Edited by: Ryan Hailey
Original Music by: David Krystal (http://www.davidkrystalmusic.com)
Opening Animation by: Danny Rapaport
Producer & Additional Artwork by: Jacob S. Salamon
Additional notes by: Tommy Cook
Toy Story 3: Analyzed By Aliens
Greetings, and welcome to Earthling Cinema. I am your host, Garyx Wormuloid. This week’s artifact is Toy Story 3, brought to you by corporate powerhouse Disney, which, as you all know, survived its planet of origin and now owns a 51% share of the known universe.
Toy Story 3 is a story about toys, a race of living, breathing creatures that were enslaved by the humans for their own amusement. In Earth’s heyday, toys such as Woody, Female Woody, Buzz Aldrin, and all these different horses [Bullseye, Slinky, Hamm, Rex] were considered second class citizens in a materialistic society that judged beings based only on their pragmatic usefulness.
When the film begins, the toys are owned by Andy, a ruthless overlord who labels them with his name, effectively smothering their individual will. He keeps his subjects suspended in a perpetual state of oppression [them hiding in the toy chest], ignoring them to heed the beck and call of his master: the cell phone. A Samsung Galaxy Note from the looks of it.
Andy must further cement control over his dominion by going to college, and since his toys don’t have the test scores to go with him, he sentences them to the attic. The toys undergo an existential crisis, uncertain about the sort of “afterlife” that awaits them up there. And their anxiety is justified. Three words: spi-der- webs. That’s why I always make my wife get the Galaxmas decorations. Woody, ever the die-hard loyalist, preaches eternal devotion to Andy, no matter how spooky it is in the attic– a classic case of Sher- lockholm Syndrome. But it’s no use. The other toys escape to a daycare remember that Earth had only one sun. Sunnyside seems nice at first, but turns out to be a socialist nightmare. Here the toys are no longer private property, and are instead plagued by the tragedy of the commons, tossed around like the proverbial heated potato.
Lots-O-Huggin’ Bear takes it upon himself to rule this socialist utopia with a fuzzy fist, for as he says, the toys are “without owners” [TC 22:45]. But he is a malevolent dictator, subjecting his citizens to torture at the hands of ruthless toddlers in order to crush their spirits. He maintains power with a secret police force [giant creepy baby, the weird buzzard dude, etc] brainwashing [Buzz], and a monkey who is clearly on meth. Lotso’s walking stick doubles as a gavel, a symbol of order, and his strawberry scent strikes fear into the batteries of all who cross him.
The toys try to sneak out unnoticed, but when Lotso confronts them, they figure why not stage a libertarian coup [Barbie: “Authority should derive from the consent of the governed, not from the threat of force!”]. It works, and the big baby throws Lotso in the trash– the very place he said toys were destined to go. He drops his gavel-walking stick, suggesting his reign of tyranny is over [1:14:55].
But that ending would be too easy, so Lotso drags everyone else into the trash with him, and they are hauled off to a volcano. Here salvation comes in the form of a giant claw, operated by a trio of racist caricatures [1:22:30].
machina,” an Ancient Greek term for a machine that descends from the sky to put Gods on the stage, and I don’t just mean god of the stage Neil Patrick Harris. In 21st century parlance, the expression was used to indicate a plot device that immediately and conveniently solves an unsolvable problem. Toy Story 3’s deus ex machina is both a literal machine descending from the sky and a plot device that conveniently saves the day. Despite being critically and commercially successful, the boys at Pixar could always find time for obscure inside jokes.
At the end of the film, Ken and Barbie usher in a “groovy” utopia, perhaps indicating that a time will come when the toy race will no longer be oppressed, and can exist in harmony with all the Earth’s creatures. In the meantime, Woody and his friends are content to live under Bonnie’s benevolent rule. That is, until she goes to college too and they have to do the whole thing over again.
For Earthling Cinema, I’m Garyx Wormuloid. If you coincidentally had something in your eye after watching this movie, click the subscribe button.