Toy Story spinoff Lightyear has just hit theaters, and relative to the usual glowing reception to Pixar movies, the film has gotten a polarizing response. While the movie looks spectacular and is yet another achievement in animation, it has been criticized for its less than amazing story and a lacking color palette.
That has led to unbalanced thoughts on the newly released sci-fi adventure, but Redditors have some completely hot takes on it. From the film having no redeeming qualities to it being the best Pixar movie in five years, the mid-tier Pixar movie has divided audiences.
Andy Has Bad Taste In Movies
Putting it politely as possible, Popejushual notes that Lightyear simply isn’t a good film. The Redditor explains, “Andy has really bad taste in movies …” At the beginning of the new movie, a block of text convolutedly explains that Lightyear is a 1990s movie on which the toy of Buzz Lightyear is based and that it’s Andy’s favorite film.
In fairness, while Lightyear isn’t a bad movie, it’s hard to believe that Lightyear is a six-year-old’s favorite film. The design of Buzz, and even Zurg for that matter, is much duller and spiritless compared to the designs of Andy’s toys. One of the most glaring omissions is Zurg’s cape. However, Buzz is different from his Toy Story character in that Lightyear shows him with way more weapons.
It Wasn’t As Good As The Direct-To-Video Movie
In 2000, the direct-to-video spinoff movie, Buzz Lightyear of Star Command: The Adventure Begins, was released to modest fanfare. The film still has a pocket of fans, including Dev1359, who thinks it’s way better than Lightyear. The Redditor notes, “I expected an epic galactic adventure akin to those stories and this was not that.”
Surprisingly, the new movie does have a lot of similarities with the direct-to-video movie and its spinoff series in terms of its character arc. In both Lightyear and Star Command, Buzz is egotistically determined to accomplish everything by himself until a group of outcasts encourages him to become more of a team player. And while the movie’s premise isn’t all that epic, its depiction of space and the animation is hugely ambitious.
It’s The Best Pixar Movie Since Coco
Fans can rely on Pixar to deliver awe-inspiring and heartwrenching animated movies, but while Lightyear received decent reviews, it has not been anywhere near as praised as other movies from the beloved studio. However, FeelTheBernerd is such a big fan of the new sci-fi movie that they prefer it to most of the studio’s recent work, believing that it’s Pixar’s best movie in five years.
The Redditor argues, “I love Disney / Pixar / sci-fi so I might be a little biased, but in my opinion, this is the best Pixar movie since Coco“However, in that five years, the studio has put out some of its best work, including Toy Story 4, The Incredibles 2and Soultwo of which were Pixar movies that won the Oscar for Best Animated Picture.
It Wasn’t ’90s Enough
Though the movie quickly flashes forward decades into the future, it’s initially set in the ’90s, and in the 2000s universe, it was released in the 90s too. But JuniorCaptain observes that the film isn’t 90s enough. The Redditor posits, “It did not feel very 90s, other than one or two moments. The hair and clothes, humor, and story all felt very contemporary.”
The movie could have gone down the same path as Captain Marvel, which was set in the ’90s and was full of pop culture references to the decade and an impressive grunge soundtrack. However, Lightyear does have a couple of blink-and-you’ll-miss-it references, such as when Buzz blows into a cartridge when it is not working, which is something ’90s kids know too well when it comes to the SEGA Genesis.
Kids Wouldn’t Want To Own A Buzz Toy After Watching Lightyear
Given that the Buzz Lightyear toy is based on Lightyear in the Toy Story universe, it has raised a lot of skepticism amongst viewers, especially Lymeguy. The Redditor rhetorically asks, “would this movie really have inspired a kid to be so into Buzz? Compared to the vibrant and colorful depiction of Buzz in the Toy Story movies. “
In fairness, the more interesting characters in the movie raise the question as to why Andy does not own a Sox, the robot cat who was Lightyear‘s MVP. Any child who saw this movie in 1995 would have unequivocally begged their parents for a Furby-like interactive Sox.
The Fake-Out Was Disappointing
DisneyDreams7 was disappointed by the movie’s final act and its big twist, claiming, “The real Zurg should have been the villain of this film, not this fake-out. Makes the character so uninteresting to tease.” This isn’t so much of an unpopular opinion, but it’s far from a popular opinion either. The twist of Zurg being an older version of Buzz from the future has split fans into two camps. Some think it’s genius and others think it’s silly, but many have speculated that there is a real Zurg, which could be the villain in the sequel.
The fake-out brings to memory the fake Mandarin in Iron Man 3but the real Mandarin featured in Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Ringsso it’s easy to imagine a similar thing happening in the Lightyear series. Either way, it led to an ingenious origin story behind the name Zurg.
Tim Allen Should Have Voiced Older Buzz
Paultheschmoop has an interesting idea but one that is ultimately flawed. The Redditor posits, “I’m far from a fan of Tim Allen but I can not help but feel like they missed a great opportunity to have him voice older Buzz.” The director, Angus MacLane, thinks that Lightyear would not have worked with Tim Allen because Allen’s depiction of the character is too comedic, and the more serious parts of the film would not feel sincere.
Not only that, but having Allen voice Old Buzz would have been even more problematic, as it would have raised so much confusion about the toy being specifically based on that version of Buzz. It would have retroactively ruined many fans’ perceptions of the Toy Story Buzz, knowing that he’s actually based on a villain.
There Shouldn’t Be A Sequel
When debating the idea of a sequel and the open-ended nature of the final sequence, SwimBrief complains, “Oh goddammit I do not need some kind of greater story epic series out of this mediocrity.”
However, there are limitless possibilities of where the series could go even outside of the idea of the real Zurg. And just because one movie in a series was not amazing, it does not mean a follow-up can not be. This has happened in the Thor series, with Bumblebee in the Transformers franchise, and so many other times. Lightyear 2 could be a fantastical space odyssey, and who does not want to see more Sox?
Evans Wasn’t Great As Buzz
Some Toy Story fans were skeptical about Lightyear when they learned that Tim Allen wasn’t reprising the role. However, along with the photorealistic animation, Chris Evans’ performance in the movie has been praised the most.
But not everyone is satisfied, and Janus_Prospero thinks that the Captain America actor is worse than Allen. The Redditor argues, “Tim Allen is a better Buzz Lightyear. Even Patrick Warburton is probably a better Buzz in terms of being engaging and fun.”
The Sidekicks Were Too Dumb
Tythousand takes issue with the supporting characters, arguing that Buzz was right to try and go it alone. The Redditor claims, “the sidekicks were so dumb that it completely undermined the movie’s ‘everyone needs help’ message. No one needs help from people who are dangerously incompetent.”
While Mo Morrison’s running gag about the pen got a little too tedious and was clearly only there to foreshadow the pen’s use, the supporting characters aren’t too different from sidekicks in other Pixar films. Rex in Toy Story is just as incompetent as Mo, and Mater in Cars is just as dangerous as Darby Steel.
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