Toy Story 2

  • Review Date: May 19, 2003
  • Rated: G
  • Genre: Family and Kids
  • Release Year: 2009
  • Running Time: 92 minutes

Common Sense Media says

Stunning, witty, exciting, enchanting, and moving.
  • Review Date: May 19, 2003
  • Rated: G
  • Genre: Family and Kids
  • Release Year: 2009
  • Running Time: 92 minutes

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Educational value

No overtly educational content, but kids will learn about the importance of friendship and honesty.

Positive messages

The movie has strong positive themes about loyalty, friendship, and teamwork. Characters learn lessons about themselves and others. Strong message about enjoying life's joys.

Positive role models

The toy characters once again go to great lengths to rescue a friend in trouble. The movie's villain is clearly motivated by greed and eventually gets his comeuppance. A supporting character betrays one of the main characters due to his own hurts and suspicion -- but this is clearly shown to be wrong. Feisty Jessie is a welcome addition to the gang.

Violence & scariness

Some tense scenes show the main characters in peril. Some slapstick falls; characters fight/grapple (but no one is seriously hurt). One battle scene turns out to be from a video game. In the 3-D version, a couple of scenes can be briefly scary, like when Buzz's nemesis Zurg is featured. Characters' separation from their friends/loved ones could be upsetting to some younger kids.

Sexy stuff

Very mild flirting between toy characters.

Language

Mild insults like "idiot" and "shut up."

Consumerism

Several of the Toy Story characters are recognizable brands (like Barbie, Ken, and Mr. & Mrs. Potato Head). And beyond that, the Toy Story franchise has the potential for the most merchandising tie-ins of any kid-targeted movie series. Toys, action figures, books, party supplies, plush dolls, you name it -- Disney's Toy Story characters are everywhere, especially kid favorites Woody and Buzz Lightyear. A large part of the movie takes place inside a toy store; companies/brands like Playskool and Mattel are mentioned by name -- other toy brands depicted include Operation, Tinker Toys, and Mouse Trap.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this Toy Story sequel is just as delightful as the first movie (as is the next one in the series, Toy Story 3). The plot again finds the toys banding together to rescue a fellow toy in peril; the fact that characters are separated from their loved ones could scare or upset the youngest viewers. There are also some tense scenes with characters in danger (though no one gets seriously hurt) and a very poignant sequence involving Jessie the Cowgirl. But there's no sex, strong language, drinking, or other iffy content, and kids who watch will take away positive messages about teamwork, friendship, and loyalty. Note: The 3-D version of the movie includes a couple of brief scenes that might spook the youngest viewers, like the evil Zurg trying to blast Buzz, but otherwise the digital effects are played for laughs (or, as the green squeeze-toy aliens would say, "Oooh ... aaah").

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

In TOY STORY 2, Woody (again voiced by Tom Hanks) is stolen by devious toy store owner Al (Wayne Knight), who recognizes Woody as a valuable collectable. With Woody to complete his full set of toys from a 1950s TV show, Al can sell the collection to a toy museum in Tokyo. Woody is delighted to discover his origin and value -- and to meet up with Woody's Roundup co-stars Jessie the Yodeling Cowgirl (Joan Cusack), Stinky Pete the Prospector (Kelsey Grammer), and faithful steed Bullseye. They tell Woody that he'll be better off in a museum than waiting for Andy to outgrow him -- and he starts to think they may be right. Meanwhile, Woody's friends organize a rescue mission led by Buzz Lightyear (Tim Allen) -- a series of hilarious and breathtaking adventures naturally ensues.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Toy Story 2 is stunning, witty, exciting, enchanting, and very moving. Amazingly, it's just as good as the sensationally entertaining original. The animation is better -- the main characters' facial expressions should have qualified the animators for a Best Actor Oscar, and the backgrounds are more authentically lived in. And the script is excellent. It's very, very funny, with sly references to classic films, and it's also insightful and touching, with a sort of Velveteen Rabbit theme about the important role that a well-loved toy plays in the life of a child.

In these days when 8-year-olds can talk knowledgeably about the extra value that a "mint" tag adds to a Beanie Baby auction on Ebay, it's enormously valuable to think about the issue that Woody faces. Should he have a brief but satisfying life as the beloved friend of a child who will eventually grow up and leave him bereft? Or should he remain perfectly preserved and perpetually honored as a museum exhibit? It's a hard choice, but one that gets at the very heart of what growing up really means.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about what the characters learn in this movie. Why does Woody worry about his future? What do Jessie and Pete the Prospector teach him? Are they right?

  • Kids: What's your favorite toy? Why? Would you ever want to save it instead of play with it? Why is collecting stuff for its own sake a hollow pursuit?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:October 2, 2009
DVD release date:May 11, 2010
Cast:Joan Cusack, Tim Allen, Tom Hanks
Directors:Ash Brannon, John Lasseter, Lee Unkrich
Studio:Pixar Animation Studios
Genre:Family and Kids
Topics:Magic and fantasy, Adventures, Friendship
Run time:92 minutes
MPAA rating:G

This review of Toy Story 2 was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Adult Written bynduns March 26, 2010
AGE
5
QUALITY
 

This movie did what most sequels wish they could do...

And that is being just as good as the first one! I mean, who saw that coming? The only other sequel I feel truly pulled that off was Shrek 2. Rarely are we treated to something like Toy Story 2, a sequel that's just as good and charming as its predecessor. The writers at Pixar deserve a round of applause for pulling off what really shouldn't be the near-impossible.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Kid, 6 years old April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
QUALITY
 

Theft adviserey

Toy story 2 like it first is a nice movie for children. The one thing parents should consider is Theft.A man desperate to have a collection steels Woody and some children of young ages may not understand the hardship of this.
Teen, 15 years old Written byBlueSpiderberry June 29, 2009
AGE
6
QUALITY
 

Sweet movie, Could cause guilt about letting go of toys

As someone who saw this as a child, i know something that might not occur to adult reviewers. WHile most of the messeges are fine, there is a subplot about toys that have been abondoned that can be very upsetting to kids. And very anxiety producing in terms of letting their own toys go.

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