(The Disneycember logo is shown, before showing clips from Cars 3)
Doug (vo): Cars 3. (Beat) Yeah, why not? I mean, okay, I can think of a lot of reasons why not, but...here it is, so might as well look it over. As a lot of you know, I didn't really care for the previous Cars movies, in fact, I think Cars 2 is one of the worst films Pixar has ever made. But some people were telling me that Cars 3 was different. It was more adult, it was more grown-up, it's the best of the movies. And...yeah, out of the movies, I guess that's true, but given the low bar they set, I don't think that's any real big accomplishment.
Doug (vo): Lightning McQueen is back to racing...aw, no more spy stuff? What a shame. But he discovers a younger racer named Jackson Storm is breaking his records and, eventually, even McQueen himself. Getting horribly injured on the race track, McQueen decides to leave racing for a while, disappearing into his old town home, wondering if he'll ever race again. He decides he does want to race, but he knows that if he's going to, he needs to make some changes. Getting a high-end sponsor behind his back, he gets a new trainer, new location, new equipment, the whole shebang. He starts to become reckless, though, being treated like an old-timer, and tries rushing the process. After finding he can't handle a lot of the training equipment, the sponsor suggests maybe he should pull out of the race and they'll still get him some branding. McQueen disagrees, though, and goes on his own to do his own kind of training, much to the trainer's dismay. She follows him, but has trouble keeping up, as it's on different types of roads like sand and dirt and so forth. As they hang out more together, he discovers more about her past and her ambitions, and, of course, they find they have a lot in common and they come together for a compromise.
Doug (vo): So, yeah, let's see. We have a red car who's lost his way, and so he takes some time away, training and getting in touch with what really matters, and...sounds a little familiar, huh? Oh, and there's a big race at the end and there's a twist about not being so selfish? You don't say! Okay, to the film's credit, it really isn't a huge repeat of the first Cars film. I mean, first of all, there is more effort put in. It isn't exactly one of those stories where you know from beginning to end exactly what's gonna happen, but the downside is, it's not really a story where you want to know what's gonna happen either. There's a lot of sitting around and talking, surprisingly enough. Don't get me wrong. When a lot of Pixar films do that, it's usually done very well and is very encouraged. But... (Sighs) ...it's still Cars 3. It's Owen Wilson going "Wow" every other second. No, seriously. Somebody do a "Wow" count on this movie. I think it broke a record, even for Owen Wilson! There's not a ton of creativity or excitement or even that many laughs. It's just sort of them talking about what really matters and talking about different training techniques, what works, what doesn't. Honestly, looking it over, it seems more like the virtual reality stuff was doing better. That's how the other guy [Jackson Storm] got in the lead and...how many times you gonna race on the beach or in the forest or anything like that? Doesn't it make sense to master the race track? It's like an opera singer learning how to do rap. Okay, it's good to broaden your horizons, but I just don't see that much crossover.
(Several scenes focusing on the demolition derby sequence are shown, before resuming showing various clips)
Doug (vo): The only time where I saw a legit amount of creativity is when he was doing some dirt racing. The designs of a lot of these cars, especially this school bus, were really creative and fun to look at. But aside from that, the story and characters aren't really riveting enough for adults, and it's not really goofy or fun enough for kids. Now, again, that's not to say it's awful, and this is coming from a guy who really hated the first two Car(s) films. You can tell the filmmakers really cared about what they were saying and writing and animating and the performances. But it's just stuff we've seen in other sports movies, nothing new is really added. The fact that they're cars is still distracting, it really doesn't add anything to the world, I still don't fully understand how this world works. The ending climax, while character-driven, still doesn't make a whole lot of sense. Oh, you want to let someone else race? Great. Why don't you do that with someone else's money who's paying millions of dollars to brand you? This just seems like a douchey move, and the explanation they have for how they got away with it still seems dumb.
Doug (vo): So, was I pulling my hair out at it? No. Did I hear a ton of bad jokes? A couple, but not that many. Is it as annoying and/or bland as the previous Cars films? Not by a long shot. But I still can't say I was that entertained. I guess if you like the Car(s) movies and you kind of want a more adult take on it, this does okay. If you have a soft spot for some of these sports and training cliches, you'll get through it all right. But I don't know how many kids would be that excited for this story, and I don't know how many adults would be that excited for this story. I guess out of the Cars movies, this one is the best. But given its background, it's not much of a race to win.
(The film's final scene, showing Lightning McQueen, painted in blue colors like Doc Hudson, and Cruz Ramirez driving together through the Radiator Springs dirt race course, is shown)