Cars 3

I used my computer early in the morning to order some items, like the Blu-ray Criterion Collection edition of “Being There” and a Partridge Family cookbook.  I shopped for groceries and then caught the bus headed towards Jack London Square so that I could see an early afternoon showing of “Cars 3.”  I had good memories of the original movie because Paul Newman was the voice of one of the characters, and even my mother, who hates animation, said that she thought it was a good movie.  I thought that “Cars 3” was not a good movie, rather boring at times.  It seemed that the filmmakers were trying to go the way of Toy Story in giving the animated characters human emotions and problems.  The kids going to see this movie don’t want to see a Lightning McQueen who is like their parents.  The story was about aging and dealing with it, and the erosion of the talent you’ve counted on all your life.  I had a suspicion that the themes reflected the people making the film.  What was good about this sequel was that Mater was not the center of the action, as in “Cars 2.”  What was not so good was the long scenes with Owen Wilson talking.  The telling sign of how the audience was perceiving this movie was the restlessness of the little kids in the audience.  They seemed bored for long stretches.  Did we need to see scenes of Lightning McQueen feeling uncertain and trying to decide what to do?  His dilemma was that he couldn’t reach the speed of his rival.  He seemed like a middle-aged man dealing with impotence.  The idea that a car needs to go into training was questionable, but then we have to go to a new location for more training that had shades of “The Black Stallion.”  The use of Bruce Springsteen’s “Glory Days” on the soundtrack was predictable, as there was a generally stale quality to the film.  One thing I had to think about was that if there are male cars and female cars, then how exactly do they reproduce?  I don’t recall a love scene in any of the Cars movies.  The ending wasn’t one of your simple, happy endings, but it also wasn’t too satisfying.  Pixar has certainly done too many sequels in recent years.  They need more people with original ideas.  They need fresher stories.  I stayed until the very end of the credits, and there was a brief scene with Mater, but I’m not sure that it’s worth staying in the theatre just to see that little bit.  The movie did make me want to know a little bit more about Cristela Alonzo.  I missed her television show entirely.  She was born in 1979.  I see that Owen Wilson will turn 49 this year.  Some of the people who died on June 21 include June Christy (1990), John Lee Hooker (2001), Carroll O’Connor (2001), and Leon Uris (2003).  Today is a birthday for Chris Pratt (38), Juliette Lewis (44), Meredith Baxter (70), Michael Gross (70), and Ray Davies (73).

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