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Cars 2
BLU-RAY disk
Oct 31, 2011 By: Stephanie Cooke
Cars 2 order download
Director:
John Lasseter

Actors:
Owen Wilson
Larry the Cable Guy
Michael Caine

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
Lightning McQueen takes his racing around the world and when Mater comes along for the first time, he gets more than he bargained for when he gets mistaken for an American spy by British spooks Finn McMissle and Holley Shiftwell.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
The CARS movies are probably the only Pixar movies that I didnt see numerous times in theater or at all, for that matter. So while normally watching a Pixar movie on Blu-ray (or DVD) wouldnt be a first time watch for me, such is the case for CARS 2. Im not entirely sure what it is about the movies that grind my gears, so to speak, but theyre definitely not really my cup of tea. However, with that being said, I can see the enormous appeal behind the films for the younger generation and especially a younger generation of boys. The CARS movies are kind of like my generations Hot Wheels, only with a better story, way cooler graphics and a whole lot of heart.

I guess maybe my main problem with the film is how distracting the character of Mater is. I get that hes supposed to be fun, blissfully ignorant and all that, but his character just takes me away from the rest of the movie as a whole. The new characters that are introduced in this film, Finn McMissile and Holley Shiftwell, are really enjoyable (and the voices are cast perfectly with Michael Caine as McMissile and Emily Mortimer as Shiftwell) and I really enjoy the James Bond feel that they give the movie. However, once Mater is thrown into the mix, it becomes less fun and more goofy and not in a particularly good way.

Throughout the movie, I couldnt help but smile as I caught various references to other Pixar in Radiator Springs, keep an eye out for the Drive-In theater showing The Incredimobiles and in Paris, the famous French restaurant where Ratatouille takes place appears, but Cars-ified (called Gastows in CARS 2). You can tell just from watching the scenery that everyone involved in working on the film took great care with all of the details and the movie itself is, in fact, a labor of love. Only with people who really love what theyre doing can you get as beautiful a film as this.
THE EXTRAS
Director John Lasseter Commentary: While Im not typically a big fan of commentaries, everything with John Lasseter is a joy. He is so clearly passionate about everything that he does that you cant help but smile when you hear him talk about his work.

Toy Story Toon Hawaiian Vacation: I love Toy Story and I absolutely adore the shorts that always come before a Pixar movie. As much as I hate to say it, this has to be one of my least favourite shorts out of all of them. I feel like Pixar is just trying to do way too much with Toy Story and this is the icing on the cake. The short has its moments when its funny and just what it should be, but after all is said and done, I felt like putting on Knick Knack, Partly Cloudly, Presto or For The Birds to fully remember why me and countless others get just as excited for what will be before the feature film.

Cars Toon Air Mater: As far as the two shorts included in this Blu-ray go, Air Mater was the more fun of the two. While Im not a huge fan of the character, this short was cute and a whole lot of fun. I know that kids will love watching this and it just shows that real star of the CARS franchise is Mater.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
While for me, the movie isnt as spectacular as the other Pixar movies, CARS 2 and pretty well everything that Pixar does is always miles and miles ahead of the competition. The thing that really makes this movie worthwhile though, is the incredible set of extras that are included. I find it tiresome when watching special features and you can tell that some filmmakers just include random and pointless special features solely for the sake of having extras on the DVD. Theyre not good, theyre just thrown together quickly, the quality is bad and theyre really just not worth watching. Thats never the case with Pixars home video releases and CARS 2 is no exception.

In the case of CARS 2, the version I watched included the two bonus features and a commentary. My recent trip to San Francisco for a Pixar Press Day revealed that the bonus features on the 5-disc set are really worth watching if youre a fan of the franchise and it has a ton of Easter Eggs if youre into trying to find those (Hint: on the interactive World Tour feature, when on the Pacific location, hit the down button for a bonus feature. Other Easter Eggs include when on the London location, press up, when Germany is highlighted press up, hit the up arrow when in Prague and hitting down when Porta Corsa is highlighted.) there's apparently about a half dozen or so to look for.
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