Synopsis: Woody, Buzz Lightyear and the rest of the gang embark on a road trip with Bonnie and a new toy named Forky. The adventurous journey turns into an unexpected reunion as Woody's slight detour leads him to his long-lost friend Bo Peep. As Woody and Bo discuss the old days, they soon start to realize that they're worlds apart when it comes to what they want from life as a toy.
Main Feature: I find "Toy Story 3" so poignant an ending to the beloved series that I was cynical for "Toy Story 4"--ironic, given that can be applied to the description of part three in the franchise. And that is true: Lotso Hugging Bear represented a cruel world awaiting the generation who grew up with Woody, Buzz & Co. To me, that was the pointed message the film was delivering. While watching "Toy Story 4," the edge is dulled down considerably. While good things come in threes, it felt off for a fourth "Toy Story" to wrap things up. Was that the point? Possibly. The Gabby Gabby character in "Toy Story 4" is very much in the vein of Lotso: comes to you as a friend with ulterior motives. But what sets her apart from Lotso is the single characteristic of redemption. This quality of humanity is what truly sets "Toy Story 4" apart from its preceding movies: the trials of tribulations of a group of young people raised on 'everyone wins' enter a world that doesn't need that mind state can still be rescued and be of use. For this, "Toy Story 4" is an environment that the world should embrace. While the formula--and ending--feel stale, the film nevertheless accomplishes its goals.
Special Features: If "Toy Story 4" ends up being the finale to the franchise, then the bonuses on the set are abbreviated. Only three minutes on the connection of Woody and Buzz? One of film history's great duos--up there with Martin and Lewis, Bonnie and Clyde, Butch and Sundance--deserve an entire behind the scenes film of their own. An all-too-short featurette of cast and crew talking about the importance of their own toys growing up is enjoyable. Audio commentary, select cast members hosting making-of features, deleted scenes and technical featurettes round out the batch of ho-hum extras.
Final Call: "Toy Story 4" may not fly with style, but is more than just an acceptable end note for a series that went to infinity and beyond.