Tonight was the night. The pre release preview of Cars at the Varsity theater in downtown Toronto. Of course this is the new Toronto, so our evening began with a few waves of the metal detector wand. It’s ok though, I’d rather know that no misguided open wheel racing fan is going to blow up the screening of the biggest oval racing flick this side of Days of Dunder.
As the story begins, our hero is introduced as the self absorbed rookie who can do it all, but prefers to do it all by himself. The young whipper snapper is dressed down by The King (none other than King Richard hisself) for his attitude, as his crew is abandoning him. A sleep driving incident by Mack the transporter lands the arrogant little dude in Radiator Springs, a sleepy little town that travellers forgot when the interstate bypassed Route 66. In Radiator springs, we meet a wonderful cast of characters and watch as they teach young Lightning Mcqueen what it means to have friends. Along the way, we get to see the Cars version of cow tipping and watch Ramone the low rider change paint more often than I could count. Paul Newman is perfectly cast as the grumpy old guy in town who turns out to be the legendary Hudson Hornet who won the Piston Cup 3 years in a row way back in the Fifties. Perhaps my fave moment in the movie is when Lightning sees Doc Hudson proving to himself that he’s still got it. That cartoon stocker can drift just like old Mr Newman himself when strapped into a Super Mod. The Pixar folks have outdone themselves with the animation this time. The desert scenery is stunning (not to mention imaginative, check out those buttes) and some scenes look quite real. When Filmore raises the Stars & Stripes, I thought it was a real flag.
As one would expect, “Stickers” finds his way as the movie unfolds and becomes a true racer. I don’t want to spoil any details, so you’ll just have to head out this weekend to see Cars: The Movie.
The Garage rates Cars as 5 spark plugs out of 5.