First reactions from Pixar’s ‘Lightyear’ promise a likely box office hit

Critics got their first peek at “Lightyear” on Wednesday night, the first Pixar movie to get a theatrical run since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. (Previous titles, like “Turning Red,” “Luca,” and “Soul” went straight to Disney+.) The previous four “Toy Story” films have all been players at the Oscars (with “Toy Story 3” actually nominated for Best Picture) so eyes are always on this company for Awards Season.

But “Lightyear,” famously, is not a “Toy Story” movie. It’s an origin story for the toy voiced by Tim Allen, but this time about the “character” of Buzz (e.g. the movie that inspired the toy tie-in) and he’s voiced by Chris Evans. Everybody got that?

Other voice talent includes Keke Palmer, James Brolin, Isiah Whitlock, Jr., Uzo Aduba, and the ubiquitous Taika Waititi. The director is Angus MacLane, who has been working with Pixar since 1998, and was co-director on “Finding Dory.” 

Reaction from Fandango’s on-the-scene reporter was bullish on the picture.

Others beamed with enthusiasm after the first screening, as well.

Some showed a degree of concern that audiences might be expecting an experience similar to “Toy Story.” The emotional workout from those developmental pictures appears to have been swapped out for pure action-adventure. 

There is a robo-cat character in “Lightyear” named Sox that will probably sell a lot of toys of its own. Who knows, maybe in a few years we’ll be watching a movie about Sox’s origin.

Others felt the movie about ancillary movie products was just too much cigar-chomping commercialism to bear.


Here’s a quick look at Sox. Get used to Sox, they’re gonna be around for a while, it seems.

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