Pixar is of course the studio that has an (almost) unbroken record of perfection, having brought us such instant classics like The Incredibles, Finding Nemo, Ratatouille, Up and Wall-E.
The original Toy Story should probably also be on this list of classics, but this threequel is actually probably a better movie than the original (it's definitely better than Toy Story 2).
Interestingly, although Pixar had originally stated that they would only make original films (and not do sequels) they have now done two sequels to Toy Story and the Los Angeles Times reported recently that due to pressure by Pixar's new owners (Walt Disney Company) three of the next four releases will be sequels: Toy Story 3, Cars 2 and Monsters, Inc. 2. Bizarrely, it seems to me that they are making sequels of their least successful films, NOT their most successful. My only explanation is that they are trying to correct mistakes they made the first time. One of my favorite films of all time is The Incredibles and I think a sequel would be a blockbuster, even for Pixar whose less successful films generally have worldwide grosses in the half-billion dollar range. Their most commercially successful film is Finding Nemo which I know is a favorite of many other people (and is also a great film).
Toy Story 3 is really a very good film, one of Pixar's best, which is saying a lot. It currently has ridonculous 99% fresh rating on rottentomatoes.com. It is not in the stratosphere of Finding Nemo and The Incredibles but it is about as good as Up (2009) and better than both Wall-E (2008) and Ratatouille (2007).
What makes Toy Story 3 so good is that it has a brilliant, suspenseful script which makes complete sense and is consistent with a cartoon universe where toys can talk and move on their own volition and they are animated by being played with by owners who love and care for them.
The same can not be said for recent summer blockbusters like Iron Man 2 which has a script that at times makes no sense whatsoever. Toy Story 3 is always interesting and always very, very clever. It is also often very, very funny. The director does an excellent job of making apparently cuddly toys seem ominous and threatening.
And of course the ending has a scene which will even make someone as cold-hearted as Dick Cheney cry. Kids will come out of the movie smiling and parents will come out smiling through tears. A very memorable cinematic experience.
A word about 3-D. I saw the film in 3-D but I think it would have been just as effective in 2-D, so if you want to save 3 or 4 bucks, I'd recommend doing that, but definitely see this film!
Running Time: 1 hour, 43 minutes. MPAA Rating: G for general audiences.
Overall Grade: A+/A (4.167/4.0).