Matt's Movie Watching World




Opinion of the Week (Jun. 19‒24, 2017)

Review: Cars 3 (2017) <8-

I have some positive and negative criticisms for this movie, positive that it's a Pixar movie with traditionally good Pixar animation, with good characters.  It's the third Cars movie, and I now feel that I've gotten used to these car-shaped characters, and I have both positive and negative feelings for that.  The new characters that weren't in the franchise before are okay here.  Before I move on to my negative criticisms, I want to say that Pixar has a talented knack for including heartily good emotional content in their movies, and the biggest value in Cars 3 may be the emotional resolution towards the end.  Okay now, if you look at my rating for this movie, that I give it an 8-, and if you look just at the positive that I've just mentioned, you might think that this is an above-average movie.  And it is, kind of.  But if you know me and how I think about Pixar, you might notice that this is only an 8-, a very below-average Pixar movie, in fact now the least good Pixar movie on my list.  Here's why I think this.  There's no mention of the events in Cars 2, so no Finn McMissile or Holley Shiftwell, no mention of the fact that Mater has some super-spy experience in his trunk, no mention of the international travels that any of these characters undertook in that installment.  And that causes me to think, when people gave Cars 2 Pixar's least-good reviews, did that get in the heads of Pixar's chiefs?  Did the Pixar chiefs react to Cars 2's negative (or what's next-closest to negative) response, and feel a necessity to do what they considered to be damage control?  I don't think that's a good thing for Pixar to do.  It looks like after going from 1 to 2, they felt they needed to take a step backward, and go back more to the style of 1.  That means more talk about Chick Hicks and Doc Hudson, more of the ordinary circular racetracks instead of the scenic and squiggly racetracks, and the detours that get in the way of the final resolution.  There's music by Randy Newman, like in the first, instead of Michael Giacchino, like in the second.  Sometimes it sounds right to go back to the successful first style after an unsuccessful second style, but when done that way, it leaves a gaping eyesore in the middle for all to see, that admits that Pixar has a fault.  That's pretty bothersome to my Pixar-purist mindset.  I agree that Cars 2 is less good than Cars, but in my opinion, what Cars 3 should have done was acknowledge what the first and second were, used that, and take an extra step forward.  Cars 3 should have been about racing, mixed with spying, mixed with something else.  I can't say what that "something else" should have been.  Or maybe Cars 3 was an unnecessary movie to make.  But now that all these three Cars movies exist, I now think maybe there should be a 4th Cars movie, and I want that movie to have music by both Randy Newman and Michael Giacchino, with a cast of characters including Lightning McQueen, Mater, Chick Hicks, Finn McMissile, Jackson Storm, and more, all interacting with each other in an extraordinary and well-developed international racing/spying story combined with more that what you can imagine right now, in a way that ties a lot of elements together and makes all four Cars movies important to all the others.  It sounds like that asks a lot from Pixar, but making a sequel that makes all parts better is a skill that Pixar has demonstrated before and will likely demonstrate again.



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How to make the most of Matt's Movie Watching World

1: Come visit this page, the Facebook page, and the Twitter page whenever you feel like it. I recommend that you visit often. You decide what qualifies as "often." See what movies I have seen recently, which ones I have added to my list, and which ones I have added reviews for since the last time you visited.
2: Familiarize yourself with my system of rating movies. I rate movies on a scale of 1 to 10, 10 being the best. I also add + and - signs to many of my ratings, similar to grading systems in school. Most movies I watch get a 7 or 8, while 10's and ratings less than 5 are rare. I think of this as being because I'm often too optimistic to think most movies deserve less than 5, and I'm too realistic to think most movies deserve higher than 9. Sometimes I feel like I rate movies on a scale from 6 to 9, 9 being pretty good. I encourage you to use the same or similar system when you rate your own movies.
3: When my "last movie watched" section says "in theater," that means that that movie is the most recent movie I have seen in the theater. When it says "for first time," that means it's the most recent movie I have added to my list. If the last movie I watched, the last movie I added to my list, and the last movie I saw in the theater are three different movies, then three different movies would appear on the page. If two of those movies are the same, then two movies appear. If one movie counts as all three, then only one movie appears.
4: Understand that I like a lot of Disney, animated, and family movies. I like a good number of superhero movies, comedies, sci-fi, and fantasy movies. I watch and like other movies too, but accept that I think these kids' movies and other varieties are some of the best movies ever made, and I don't apologize for that.
5: Understand that I haven't seen every movie. I've seen a lot of movies, and I've heard of a great deal more movies, but I'm only one person. I do other things besides watch movies sometimes, so to save time and money, I have to pick and choose which ones I care enough to watch. And some movies I could have seen earlier I see later instead.
6: Follow me on Facebook and/or Twitter if you have such social network memberships. My movie viewings and my scale-from-1-to-10 numbers should appear in your feed. My Opinions of the Weeks will appear every weekend. If I watch a movie you like, or if you agree with the general opinion I have of it, click the "like" or any reaction button on my Facebook post, or make an interesting comment. Start a conversation. The more you react and comment, the more it will appear in your feed.
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8: If you feel like watching a movie, but don't know which one to watch, come to my page, click on the movies list, and look over my top 100 favorite movies, marked in yellow, and watch a movie you haven’t seen before. To expand, feel free to look over my top 200 or 300, not marked in yellow. Look over anything I give an 8 or higher, or 7+ or 7. Obviously, the ones closer to the top of the list I tend to recommend more than the ones under them. If you're looking for a recent movie, playing in the theaters or recently released on home video, type ctrl-F or command-F (find) and look for this year or last year. Watch a movie or a few movies that are high on the list.
9: Look over my list and find out movies you have seen and enjoy that are not on my list. Try to analyze my list, reviews, and opinions to figure out what movies I might be likely to enjoy. Post on my Facebook page your recommendations. If I like a recommendation, and if I like a movie you've recommended, then you'll know you've contributed a little to Matt's Movie Watching World.
10: If you're an everyday visitor, look at my Quote of the Day. Try to guess what character and movie each line comes from, then drag your cursor over the empty spaces in the box to see if you’re right. For purposes of this activity, the movie title is to be considered the answer, and the character name is to be considered a hint. (The Princess Bride, Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Forrest Gump, and Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl are my most quoted movies.) Have fun with this even if you’re not an everyday visitor.
11: If you miss out on seeing my reviews and other opinions featured as Opinion of the Week, or simply have a curiosity about what I've written about in the past, look over my Opinion of the Week archive on Facebook.
12: Look at my Gunnther Awards page to see what I think about the best in various categories for every year (or at least the last 30 years). Do this especially during awards season.
13: I always have a box on my page that counts down to my most-anticipated movie being released sometime less than 9 months away. This countdown number changes every day, but I don't change what movie I'm counting down to more than 2 or 3 times a year, so don't expect a new movie countdown often, unless the number has been pretty low recently.
14: Films and movies are essentially the same thing, but films are for reviewing and studying, and movies are for watching and enjoying.
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I review and study films. I watch and enjoy movies.

This is my world. Thanks for visiting.