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Parent reviews for Toy Story 4

Common Sense says

Big-hearted, touching finale to Pixar's legendary franchise.
Based on our expert review

Parents say

age 8+
Based on 117 reviews

Kids say

age 7+
Based on 87 reviews
Adult Written byBethkg June 21, 2019

Really disappointing

I knew there was absolutely no way they could do a better ending than Toy Story 3. Toy Story 4 was disappointing, really disappointing. It was eerie, dark, and lacked all the heart of the first 3. It completely contradicts the underlying theme of the first 3 movies and throws it into a 180, leaving us with a sad, lackluster, way too “hey, kids- reality’s not easy” ending. According to this latest installment;
1.) You don’t have a friend in me.
2.) Whatever life throws at you, it’s not going to be okay because you can’t count on your friends & family to be there for you to infinity and beyond.

So many elements to this movie were just flat out depressing. Woody is trapped, defeated and dismembered, being robbed of his voice box and yet, we’re supposed to somehow completely be ok with that because the eerie attacker is the one who the story writers want to aim sympathy toward (??!) The other horribly depressing part of this story is Buzz Lightyear is reduced to a brainless sideshow coward who has somehow lost his heroic persona. Also, Bo Peep is so cold with zero emotion!

A seriously contradictory and downright depressing “final chapter” to what used to be one of the finest kid movies American pop culture ever had. Completely void of charm and heart. So bad!
Adult Written byppetros June 21, 2019

Scary and terrible message

Toy Story 4 has some good moments, but the storyline was lacking, jumping from sub-plot to sub-plot. The central plot of Woody's purpose got lost in the shuffle and the movie ended terribly. It left my son bawling tears of sadness. Where Toy Story 3 had a great ending to the series, this one desecrates the central themes of Toy Story 1-3, namely loyalty and friendship ("you've got a friend in me"). The ending makes following your inner voice a higher purpose than remaining true to those who love you.

The Gabby-Gabby character had a satisfying ending, but it was hard to see if she was good or evil most of the time. She commands some evil henchmen. The ventriloquist dolls were far too scary for a G rated movie (haunting in many ways).

I would not recommend this movie to anyone - rent Toy Story 2 or 3 and watch them if you want a good fix of Woody, Buzz and friends.
Adult Written byCrujones June 20, 2019

Child left theater scared

We had to leave the theater because my six year old was so scared. There are some incredibly creepy and intense scenes with three dummies and a creepy doll who want to rip woodies voice box out of him. Again we had to leave because my son was so scared. Whoever wrote this common sense review is out to lunch because though rated G this film has some incredibly twisted scenes, this on a psychological level. Viewer beware. Can’t speak about the film past the twenty minute mark as we left. (Also common sense, think about adding a psychologically disturbing rating, might help families)
Adult Written byBobbypop June 24, 2019

ABSOLUTELY HORRIFYING!!

We are huge Toy Story fans, in my family, and so naturally, we anticipated the release of this film with great excitement! Sadly, the excitement ended within the first 20 minutes of watching the film. Parents, I strongly encourage not letting your kids watch this movie! Thank God I had the sense to preview this before showing it to my children! “Scary” doesn’t even begin to describe the sick, twisted, nightmarish things that the creators at Disney decided would be appropriate to include in a film that they know 3 year olds will be going to see! Who is writing this stuff? Alford Hitchcock? The creators of this film should be ashamed of themselves. They took “scary” way too far, even to the point of sadistic. I am horrified as a parent, and there is NO WAY I am letting my children watch this. You destroyed Toy Story...good job, Disney. You guys are sickos! Parents, beware!
Adult Written byBW81212 June 20, 2019

Stunning rendering...lousy story.

My oldest son was born shortly before the original was released, and our family loved the series. It starts with a puzzling time reference as, up until now, the series had played out in pretty much real time, but now, referencing backwards, it doesn't. Get past that, and you get about an hour and 10 minutes of what ranges from beautiful and heartwarming to seriously wacky to dark and sinister scenes. The ending, however, made me wish I had my $40, 2 hours, and love for the franchise back. It is cynical and in direct opposition to the message in the first three movies. If you were hoping that somehow it would end with Andy having a child of his own and somehow getting his old toys back for his own kids, quit hoping. That would have been lovely and a fine coda for the series. I'm not sure if this film was just a set-up for a Toy Story 5 or if the folks at Pixar have decided that what kids need is a good dose of narcissism, or maybe they just want to give kids the message that growing up is selfish and they deserve to be abandoned and rejected when they do. I don't know what they were thinking...but I am both sad and angry that they chose to go this route with the ending. (And good luck selling that stuffed animal...you think they would have learned their lesson with Lotso....)
Parent of a 4 year old Written byucigammaphi June 22, 2019

Definitely not for kids under 5

We took our son (4 years old) to see it today and he asked to leave halfway through. There are some ventriloquist dolls that are just freaky and some scary scenes. He has previously seen Toy Story 1 and 2 and really enjoyed them. My husband and I both agreed the 4 movie is for kids at least 7 or 8. We liked it as adults and will finish it once it comes out on streaming.

This title contains:

Violence & scariness
Adult Written byrichwilliams June 26, 2019

What’s in the box, Clarice?

I would NOT recommend Toy Story 4. The antagonist is a psychopath on par with Silence of the Lambs, Se7en, and Saw. The dolls and dummies are extraordinarily frightening. Many of the scenes are directly inspired by classic horror sequences. Our six-year-old has not slept in his own bed since we saw it Sunday. Forkie is an adorable spork, but seriously, do you want your child wondering, “What’s in the box, Clarice?”

This title contains:

Violence & scariness
Adult Written byMLG2018 June 22, 2019

Heart Jerking Nostalgia *SPOILERS*

As a fan of the Toy Story franchise I had mixed feelings when it came to Disney making another movie. It seemed like Toy Story 3 had the perfect ending, and so I was both excited and nervous to see Toy Story 4; but I'm glad I did. Though I love the original Toy Story movies, Toy Story 4 adds more to the franchise. The movie first starts off with a few flashbacks to the original movies, giving newer fans some background (it really made me have some serious nostalgia of the good ol' days when Disney was based purely on children's happiness, not the amount of money being taken in.) Then, you get to a scene where you find out what happened to Bo Peep and why she is not present in Toy Story 3. You get an emotional scene where Bo is taken away, and boy did that make me cry. Fastforward a little bit, you realize Woody is in some state of denial: he's clinging on to Andy, hoping that Bonnie will love him the same way as Andy did. Yet, this doesn't happen. Woody hasn't been played with at all in a while, he's been banished to the closet while watching his friends be loved and played with. Woody is trying all he can to relive the old days when he was played with (sort of like Mr. Incredible in the Incredibles). Woody sneaks into Bonnie's backpack to help her at Kindergarten orientation, thus bringing about the creation of none other than... Forky. And let me just say, the addition of Forky to the franchise was an expert move by the creators. Forky is the comic relief throughout the whole movie, as lovable as Olaf was in Frozen. The toys go on a roadtrip with Bonnie, where Forky eventually escapes and Woody goes after him. The two toys end up friends (Forky realizes Bonnie needs him and wants to get to her as soon as possible) and find themselves near the RV park where the rest of the toys are at. Now this is where things get a little bit creepy. While passing an antique shop Woody sees Bo Peep's lamp in the window and thinking she is in the shop, Woody and Forky proceed to enter the antique store. When inside the store Woody and Forky meet Gabby Gabby (who presumably was the villain) and Benson (who looks suspiciously like Slappy from Goosebumps). The pair are creepy and could cause some nightmares for small children, so be careful how young of children you bring to the movie. Gabby Gabby has a broken voice box and wants to get Woody's working voice box from inside him (even if he doesn't consent to it). At this point Woody tries to escape, Benson (and other Slappy resembling dummies) chase Woody and Forky, and Forky gets caught by the dummies while Woody escapes. Woody then finds Bo Peep at a playground near a carnival and enlists her to help him retrieve Forky. Buzz (and two stuffed animals who hate Buzz, Ducky and Bunny?) eventually finds Bo and Woody and try to help them retrieve Forky. The plan fails and everyone but Woody gives up. Woody finds Gabby Gabby and agrees to letting her have his voice box if he can get Forky back. The switch of voice boxes is made and it is revealed to us that Gabby Gabby just wants a working voice box so that the antique shop owner's granddaughter will take her home and love her. Gabby Gabby and Benson (and the other dummies) and indeed not villains (though still creepy). Harmony (the granddaughter) finds Gabby Gabby and immediately disposes of Gabby, not wanting her as a toy. Bo comes back to find Woody and both of them believe that Bonnie would love Gabby Gabby. Forky, Bo, Gabby, and Woody all make their way to Bonnie's RV (Gabby finds another kid along the way). Forky and Woody are about to jump in the RV when Woody decides that he loves Bo and wants to be with her (as his purpose as a toy is fulfilled). Buzz assures him that Bonnie will be alright, and Woody leaves the gang for Bo. This last scene has me sobbing in the movie theater. It was so heart jerking and sad to think that Woody would be separated from Buzz, Jessie, and Bullseye forever. Bo and Woody proceed to help lost toys find kids that will love them while the rest of the gang stay with Bonnie. I think the saddest part for met was the realization that many people can relate to Woody's story. Things change for better or worse, and many times you can't get the way things used to be back and even if you do it's not the same. The way Woody lost Andy in Toy Story 3 and how he is grieving over Andy in Toy Story 4 are things that we see in real life. I think if you are going through a tough time this could be a real bonding point with your child and family; it might help you see things through a different lense. Throughout the movie there were some jump scares with Benson, Gabby Gabby, and the other dummies and as those toys are creepy in themselves (especially the dummies) I wouldn't bring a child who gets scared super easily or latches onto creepy experiences. Overall, I believe Toy Story 4 was a great addition to the Toy Story franchise. I hope this helps!

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Positive role models
Violence & scariness
Adult Written byDoubleDutyMommy June 13, 2019

Closes out Toy Story Perfectly

I had the chance to screen the movie 2 weeks before the release (how I can write this review right now) and I will say, it's a must-see.

There are some foot chase scenes to capture and hold other characters hostage, and some manipulation tactics.

There is 1 use of the word "idiot" in the film by a character, and one "fluff that!" said by Bunny.

Bo and Woody *almost* kiss a couple of times. You can sense the chemistry and it is implied that they want to but it doesn't happen. Not even a simple hug or hand holding happens until the very end of the movie.
Adult Written byDayrains June 23, 2019

Disappointed

I have been a huge fan of the Toy Story journey. I've always loved Tom Hanks. This final chapter was a disappointment. Both my grandsons (5 and 10) had to cover their eyes multiple times because the puppets and Gabby were frightening
. The manipulation of Woody to surrender his voice box and the fact that after the procedure Gabby now could be loved - sent a very inappropriate message in my opinion.
Adult Written byStargrazer96 June 25, 2019

Too Dark *spoilers*

The first half and the ending was amazing and went right along with the toy story theme we are used to. The rest of it however, went too far. My 6 year old was screaming in the theater when the ventriloquist dummies were after Woody. When he had the horrified look on his face as his voice box was being ripped out she was crying she was so terrified. The chasing and threatening went on too long. If the doll would have explained right off the bat what she needed he would have given it to her then in true Woody style like he did later. There was no reason for all the horror before that. And, the chick and bunny were not needed at all. All the scenes with them could have been cut all together to get rid of half the violent connotations like the way too many times they showed them wanting to attack the woman they didn't even know. My child asked not to see it again. She doesn't want anything to do with Toy Story now. No toys, no shirts with them on it. Nothing. Good job Disney.
I give it too much violence for obvious reasons and good role models because Woody listened, forgave and helped Gabby Gabby, even though she was violent, because all she wanted was love but didn't know how else to get it.

This title contains:

Positive role models
Violence & scariness
Adult Written byOrthochik June 24, 2019

Toys abandoned their purpose in this one

Although Toy Story 4 has incredible and stunning visuals, I was ultimately let down by the story and especially the ending. I wanted to like it because I truly love the Toy Story franchise. And, if you’re not into looking at the messages/world views of mass entertainment, you will probably really enjoy this movie. I was really bugged by the storyline on this one and my thoughts about it have been niggling at me (probably because I spent $15 to see the 3D version and felt a bit ripped off). Here are the reasons it disappointed me:
1. We feel like we know the group of toys from Andy’s bedroom. Their characters have been developed from previous movies. In this one, they are shoved to the periphery—especially Buzz Lightyear!—and we are asked to become emotionally invested in Bo Peep instead.
2. Sorry, but Bo’s storyline just didn’t work for me. If you’re big on feminist/individualist ideology, you will love where they take her in this movie. I’m not against women being strong, by the way, but I felt like the writers had to shove this aspect down my throat in order to show how enlightened she had become and how Woody was still trapped in the old mindset, believing that a toy’s purpose was to belong to a child.
3. Which brings me to the major problem I have with this movie. In previous Toy Story movies, the recurring themes were “You’ve Got A Friend” and that the toys were MADE for children, not one another. This storyline turns that premise on its head and ends with Woody abandoning his friends and setting out on a life of his own (with Bo at his side), because he has now evolved past his original created purpose and embarks on a life pursuing happiness on his own. Pretty clever, eh? Except that toys (and people) really can’t ditch the purpose for which they’ve been created, no matter how hard they try.
Obviously, if you don’t share my worldview, you won’t have a problem with this message and you will enjoy the movie more than I did.
As well, I never felt invested enough in Bo (or the Bo + Woody storyline), so the ending just fell flat for me.
I watched this movie with the idea of taking my grandchildren, ages 4 and 6, to it later. I think the 4-year old would have been frightened by the antique store dummies. And while I’m at it, the “Gabby Gabby” character (instead of “Chatty Cathy,” which I owned as a kid), was just not compelling. I kept wanting her to get off-screen so I could see more of Woody and Buzz. Bottom line: Entertaining, but not moving because the writers lost the emotional core.
Adult Written byAnne F. June 23, 2019

Horrible, just terrible!

Dark depressing and just a total letdown! The reviews on here say it all. I’m shocked this is how they wanted to end the series! My only hope is that they do continue to make a 5! Just so they could redeem themselves!!
Woody should have gone to College with Andy!

... And yes, as mentioned in a review below mine, that hit the nail on the head, I was hoping Andy’s kids would somehow get the toys back.
The whole movie was just weird from spork to finish!!
Adult Written byfredshure003 June 21, 2019

GREAT MOVIE!! REPRESENT!!

I really loved this movie, and a biracial family? love that!! enjoyed!! little spooky but pretty cute to!!

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Positive role models
Adult Written bymcmovies June 21, 2019

Creepy, Not Scary

While the scenes with the dummies are certainly creepy, I would be hard-pressed to say they are scary. I realize everyone's kids are different, but I was in a group with my 6 year old and a friend's 5 year old and neither was scared.
Parent of a 4 year old Written byehallme June 20, 2019

Don’t see it

Don’t see it. It was a pretty bad movie it had three main characters Woody of course, this fork called dorky really dumb,and this one really creepy doll who’s basically no different then Annabel. It was a very slow movie and had nothing to do with the others.It could have been a great movie if the third one had ended differently but ofcours this is my own opinion (the right opinion).

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Positive role models
Adult Written byFahy87 July 26, 2019

We almost missed out on our new fav. movie

I always, ALWAYS check reviews on this site. The company has amazing and nonbias reviews. Sometimes I read some of the parents or kids reviews to see if they agree. I was so disapointed in the reviews that Toy Story 4 was recieving. "It was scary" "My kids were upset". My husband and I thought maybe we should skip this one. Our kids are 6,5,3,1. They LOVED this movie!! Loved!! Have not stopped talking about it. Yes, the puppets are creepy but their expression never changes nor do they say anything. It was more being surprise, then getting scared by them. Yes, the scene in the credits was a little much but you already know that the two characters come up with crazy plans. I was really disapointed in the reviews by other parents. This was far less scary then the one before ( TS3). There was suspense, a few things that startle you but overall I think the review given by CommonSense was spot on. My 3 covered her ears during the thunderstorm in the opening scene. But every other "scary" scene parents mentioned, my kids laughed at. This was a fantastic family movie! If I could give it more than 5 stars, I totally would. We will be adding this to our collection!

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Positive role models
Adult Written byTeaguehill July 8, 2019

Really enjoyed! Sad it’s getting hate

To be honest I did think the movie might have been a little creepy but not enough to write it off completely. Children over 6 should be able to handle it no problem. As for the story I thought it was an amazing way to end the series. The reuniting and the sad goodbye, let’s the viewers know that it’s not only the kids who’s lives eventually change. It was really sweet with great messages and it was funny at the same time. Great for kids and their parents.

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Adult Written bySheesh2017 June 21, 2019

Not as good as other Toy Story movies but my kids loved it

First, my kids (ages 8, 6, 5, and 3) loved this. I wouldn't have taken the 3 year old because he did obviously get side-tracked and can't really sit through a feature-length movie. This is the first movie we have gone to in a theater as a family.

Why it isn't a 4 or 5 - The plot wasn't super great. Woody was rescuing a SPORK craft/toy and there was another antique store so it seemed repetitive and most of the movie centered around Bo and Woody and an evil-ish talking doll and her vantrilloquist dummy henchmen. I missed the comedy of the other characters and their relationships.

I DID really like that Bo was often the savvy heroine and didn't fall into the "oh save me" stereotype. I could have done without the air of romance (there was no kissing but a lot of "will they?/won't they" moments).

What may be scary - The dummies were for sure creepy and the evil doll girl does become redeemed but she is selfish and manipulative for the vast majority of the movie and convinces Woody to permanently injure himself to help her. Several chase scenes as well.

Unexpected trigger: A doll keeps suggesting they do something so the dad will end up in jail as a way to stall him. This is all fine and silly...unless your dad is actually in jail and you are watching this movie. So, just a head's up. They repeat this 3-5 times.
Adult Written byNana of 4 October 12, 2019

Hate to even give it 1 *

Our whole family has been Toy Story fans since the original one was released. We have almost all the Toy Story merchandise for each new release.

My question is "Who was responsible for desecrating this once wonderful family movie series?"

We turned it off after the first 20 minutes. It was dark, ugly, scary and so different than the 3 previous versions.

What a horrid tarnish to a once gleaming trophy. Whoever was responsible for this should be ashamed of themselves.

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