Film review: Disney’s Cars 3 in cinemas on 14 July 2017


Disney's Cars 3 is possibly the best Cars film released so far. My 10 year old son Diego has seen the animations Cars and Cars 2 at least 1000 times. When Cars was released, he was just two and Cars was the first film he had watched from start to finish without me doing a lot of explaining. He still is a big fan of Lightning McQueen and his Cars collection is huge and almost intact despite having being played a lot over the past eight years. Diego is now a grown up 10 almost 11 year old boy but still interested in this sort of movies. Unsurprisingly Pixar's great production values, as well as dialogues, storytelling makes Cars 3 a great film for the whole family.



The trailer


The story


Lightning McQueen is world champion—a modern-day racing legend who’s riding high with five Piston-Cup wins under his hood. Suddenly, he finds himself faced with a new generation of racers who threaten not only his dominance in the sport—but the confidence that got him there. Determined to get back to the pole position, the #95 must decide if his love for racing is enough to fuel the comeback of his life. Owen Wilson (“The Royal Tenenbaums,” upcoming “Wonder”) returns to the racetrack as the voice of the champion. Wilson stars in the upcoming Woody Harrelson-directed live film “Lost in London.”

Blindsided by a new generation of blazing-fast racers, the legendary Lightning McQueen (voice of Owen Wilson) is suddenly pushed out of the sport he loves. To get back in the game, he will need the help of an eager young race technician, Cruz Ramirez (voice of Cristela Alonzo), with her own plan to win, plus inspiration from the late Fabulous Hudson Hornet and a few unexpected turns. Proving that #95 isn’t through yet will test the heart of a champion on Piston Cup Racing’s biggest stage!

Cruz Ramirez is a sunny-but-fierce unconventional trainer at the Rust-eze Racing Center. She expertly arms the team's talented rookies with cutting-edge tools to tear up the track—but she nearly stalls when her longtime idol Lightning McQueen shows up. While she’d love to help him find his way back to the top, she knows the competition is faster than ever, and victory is all about speed—or is it? Cristela Alonzo (“The Angry Birds Movie”) was called on to help bring the character to life. Alonzo’s debut stand-up special for Netflix, “Lower Classy,” which debuts on Jan. 24, 2017, showcases the comedian’s life as a the daughter of an immigrant, touching on important issues like social class, breaking the glass ceiling and how she can’t get the hang of Zumba.

Cars 3 is directed by Brian Fee (storyboard artist Cars, Cars 2) and produced by Kevin Reher (A Bug’s Life, La Luna short).

Jackson Storm is fast, sleek and ready to race. A frontrunner in the next generation of racers, Storm’s quiet confidence and cocky demeanor are off-putting—but his unmatched speed threatens to redefine the sport. Trained on high-tech simulators that are programmed to perfect technique and maximize velocity, Jackson Storm is literally built to be unbeatable—and he knows it. Armie Hammer (“Birth of a Nation”) was tapped as the voice of Jackson Storm. Hammer recently appeared in Tom Ford’s “Nocturnal Animals.” He will next be seen starring in “Free Fire,” directed by Ben Wheatley; “Final Portrait,” directed by Stanley Tucci; and “Call Me by Your Name,” directed by Luca Guadagnino.


The verdict

  Cars 3 is possibly the best film in the franchise. As always McQueen's story is about loosing it all and coming back as a winner. Don't we all love the story of the Phoenix raising from the ashes? Kids want the happy ending after all. This time McQueen reemerges as a racing coach inspired by his mentor and father figure, the fabulous Hudson Hornet. He has the spirit of a racer deep inside but the latest racing cars are unbeatable and he understands that stepping down and leaving his space to new talent Cruz is the best step forward. Cruz Ramirez is a female trainer with the same passion for racing that McQueen has. Girl Power! Introducing a female racer is a way of Disney Pixar to expand this franchise to the world of girls. At least this is how interpreted. My son did not pick up on this as he thought cars are cars...

  Cars 3 merchandising has been out there for a while now and is a big component in this franchise. Kids love playing pretend games with the little figurines after seeing the films.


  Pixar rarely disappoints with its animations and always goes beyond producing movies strictly for children.

Cars 3 has plenty of action and humour to entertain children and parents alike for 90 minutes. Most jokes incorporates contemporary references like using simulators for training.

Cars 3 key voice cast and characters feature award-winning stars Owen Wilson as world champion racer Lightning McQueen, Cristela Alonzo as unconventional trainer Cruz Ramirez, and Armie Hammer as sleek next-gen racer Jackson Storm.

Newcomers include Kerry Washington (ABC’s “Scandal,” HBO’s “Confirmation”) as Natalie Certain, a highly respected statistical analyst who knows her numbers,  Nathan Fillion (ABC’s “Castle,” ABC’s “Modern Family”) as Sterling, a brilliant businesscar who runs Rust-eze Racing Center—one of the most successful elite training facilities in the country, Lea DeLaria (Netflix’s “Orange is the New Black”) as Miss Fritter, a local legend at the Thunder Hollow Speedway demolition derby.  

Three-time Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton voices Hamilton, a fully loaded, built-in voice command assistant to high-tech trainer Cruz Ramirez. When Lightning McQueen takes his training off road, Cruz enlists Hamilton’s help to keep the struggling racer on track.  

Cars 3 also welcomes the gang from Radiator Springs back to the big screen, including Lightning McQueen’s best buddy Mater (voice of Larry the Cable Guy), and #95’s No. 1 fan Sally (voice of Bonnie Hunt). Friends supporting their hometown hero include Fillmore (voice of Lloyd Sherr), Sarge (voice of Paul Dooley), Lizzie (voice of Katherine Helmond), Ramon (voice of Cheech Marin), Sheriff (voice of Michael Wallis) and Flo (voice of Jenifer Lewis).  

Loyal transporter Mack (voice of John Ratzenberger), big-hearted Italian Fiat 500 Luigi (voice of Tony Shalhoub) and charming little Italian forklift Guido (voice of Guido Quaroni) continue to support Lightning McQueen’s racing endeavors. World-renowned sports announcer Bob Cutlass (voice of Bob Costas) is still calling the races, and Chick Hicks (voice of Bob Peterson) is back—this time as a commentator on the Racing Sports Network. The lovable duo Dusty (voice of Ray Magliozzi) and Rusty (voice of Tom Magliozzi) return as Rust-eze’s chief proprietors—though they have big things in store for Lightning McQueen.  

  Between the fantastic voice performances and the eye-popping animation, I cannot really find much to complain about this movie.

Kids' Club rating: 9/10

London Mums' rating: 8/10

Disney's Cars 3 races into UK cinemas on the 14th July 2017.

Cars 3 Merchandising

  Fans both old and new can expect exciting new products. London Mums' and the Kids' Club favourite ones available from the Disney Store include:  

Lightning McQueen remote control car

Diego hasn't stopped playing with this car since he got it. It's small enough to go under beds, kitchen table inbetween chairs... You get the idea. I have almost tripped over it a few times. But seeing the smile on my boy's face makes up for the disruption that Lightning McQueen is creating. At the end of the day he is one of Disney's favourites in our household.    

Cars 3 Sunglasses for kids

    Diego loves these glasses not just because they look as cool as Tom Cruise in Top Gun (well, to be fair this is what mums likes about these shades) but because they sit firmly on his nose unlike most sunglasses out there. They are also safe and complying with international safety. Excellent value for money.




Cars 3 Deluxe figurine playset

  These lovely figurines are completing Diego's Cars collection. He still loves lining them up and race them around the house... They are great collector's items too and come in a lovely transparent box.  

Pixar's short film Lou

It is a Pixar tradition to run a computer-animated short film before every new film. Over the years Pixar have produced amazing short movies and Lou which is theatrically released alongside Cars 3 is no exception. Lou, written and directed by Dave Mullins, is about a lost-and-found box and the unseen monster within.  

The lost-and-found box on a kindergarten playground is home to Lou, a creature made from the assorted unclaimed items. Every day after recess, Lou picks up the toys that the children leave behind; the next day, he sets them out on the playground for their owners to find. A bully by the name of J.J. starts taking others' toys, Lou starts to chase him, trying to get the backpack back. They fight, but then Lou shows J.J his old teddy bear, which was stolen from him years earlier. Lou gets J.J to give everybody's toys back and Lou gives J.J his teddy bear. Save Save Save Save Save Save Save Save Save Save Save Save Save Save Save Save Save Save Save

About Monica Costa

Monica Costa founded London Mums in September 2006 after her son Diego’s birth together with a group of mothers who felt the need of meeting up regularly to share the challenges and joys of motherhood in metropolitan and multicultural London. London Mums is the FREE and independent peer support group for mums and mumpreneurs based in London and you can connect on Twitter @londonmums