Released on DVD to coincide with the half term holidays and exclusive to Sainsbury’s, Pixar’s 2013 animated short “Toy Story Of Terror” reunites Buzz, Woody, Jessie and the rest of Bonnie’s toys for a spooky and well observed pastiche of horror movies in general and slasher movies in particular.
The plot itself is a mix of “Toy Story 2” and “Toy Story 3” as the toys have to spend the night in a motel when Bonnie’s mother’s car gets a flat tyre. Reluctant to stay in the suitcase, the toys go exploring, but something is else is wandering the gloomy corridors of the motal and one by one the toys mysteriously disappear.
One of the great dangers in animated spin offs is that the voice cast gradually (or completely) gets replaced by cheaper artists but thankfully that’s not the case here, and everyone returns to participate in this gently spine-chilling story. While Woody and Buzz are, of course, the core of the gang, “Toy Story Of Terror” is very much Jessie’s story and there’s a nice callback to “Toy Story 2” as the plucky cowgirl gets to face her demons and lay to rest a painful chapter from the past.
Of course, it wouldn’t be a “Tioy Story” tale without the introduction of some new playthings and in this 20 minute special, we get introduced to Combat Carl (Carl Wethers) and the noble Transitron. In fact, there’s a whole alternate “Toy Story” gang subtly introduced here and you can’t help but wonder if the foundation for a further spin off hasn’t been laid in their quest to return to Carl’s owner Billy.
All in all, another welcome visit with our favourite childhood toys and, if we’re never to get another feature length adventure with these characters, as long as they keep up the standard of this and the other “Toy Story Toons”, I’m happy to revisit these characters in short films for many years to come.
As a rainy day distraction for the holidays, £5 is quite steep for a twenty minute programme and there are no extras on the disc. It does auto-play (and auto-replay), so you won’t have to keep pressing that play button. But if you didn’t catch it last October when it was shown exclusively on Sky and you can’t wait until it turns up on a terrestrial channel sometime this October, it’s a worthy addition to your Pixar DVD collection.