You have to give Pixar credit. When they do sequels, something everyone supposedly hates that they do, they at least try to do them differently. Cars 2 was about as far away from Cars as possible with a global espionage plot that many viewers didn't care for. Well, Cars 3 isn't exactly going back to the franchise's roots. From everything we've seen it's a much darker, more mature offering that pits hot-shot racer Lightning McQueen (Owen Wilson) as the old veteran against a new generation of upstarts.
After a terrible accident puts him on the shelf, Lightning has to face the prospect of his career being over, especially with sleek new racer in Storm Jackson (Armie Hammer) moving up the ranks. But with the help of a feisty Latina racer Cruz Ramirez (Cristela Alonzo) the old dog learns some new tricks.
I'm still not quite sure who the audience is for this. Is Pixar just aging the franchise up with those who liked the first movie? That could be an interesting approach, but I'd be interested in seeing how this affects merchandise sales which is the Cars bread 'n butter.
Cars 3 opens June 16th.