After a disappointing sequel to the first installment of one of my favorite movies that I have watched as a child (I have watched Cars about 10 times in total I think) I did not have high hopes for this movie however, this third installment to the series seemed to give me a sense that the old Cars was back, this time with a painful yet touching plot and also the sound effects of racing that Cars never fails to disappoint with. Oh, and it also managed to make me cry which was quite surprising. I was surprised myself when I realized tears rolling down my cheeks.
This story is narrative explaining how Lightning McQueen (Owen Wilson) has now past his prime, he doesn’t even realize this as he is so used to doing what he is doing that he loses touch with reality and he finally snaps awake after losing his Piston Cup winning streak to a modern racer called Jackson Storm (Armie Hammer) who can hit over 200 miles per hour without even batting an eye whilst McQueen is struggling to hit 198 miles per hour. Lightning is extremely confident that he can beat Jackson in the following races but in reality. He doesn’t stand a chance at all. He wipes out in the last laps of the race and sets off a spectacular slow-motion scene of McQueen flipping and metal crushing but fixing the damage physically is the least of his problems. What he needs to do is to fix his confidence and willpower to carry on.
Lightning goes on another adventure starting off which his sponsor assigns him to his trainer Cruz Ramirez (Cristela Alonzo) who sees him as a racing relic hence calling him her “senior project” but after a disastrous run on the training simulator, Lightning’s sponsor tells Lightning that he just wanted to use Lightning’s name to get more merchandise sales and that his racing days are over but Lightning makes a deal with his sponsor stating that if he wins the next race then he gets to continue racing, if he loses, then he retires.
Lightning trains on the beach with Ramirez to try and reach 200 mph but to no avail and however taught Cruz how to drive in a straight line without spinning out instead. He also paid a visit to Thunder Hollow which turned out to be a demolition derby, and then visited Doc’s old coach to train with him. Cruz reveals why she is so unconfident in a conversation with Lightning, she reveals that during her first race, the minute that her opponents turned on their engines, she knew that they were in another league. She also says how she blew her only chance.
In the final race, with the green flag signaling the start of the race, Lightning is still unconfident about him winning the race but Doc’s coach and Cruz are there at the pits to encourage him but it still wasn’t enough, Lightning suddenly realized that he won’t win Jackson however, Cruz can. So when Lightning entered the pits, he ordered the crew to give the tires and fuel to Cruz to get her on the track. She was reluctant at first but Lightning told her that she blew her chance once, don’t do it again.
She went on to win the race enraging Jackson in the process, with Doc’s coach and Lightning’s guidance. Lightning also gets to keep his place at Rust-eze because he wins (if 2 drivers for one team driving the same car wins a race, they both win) but that would mean that Cruz won’t have a place. So the CEO Dinoco decides to buy Rust-eze so that they become a joint company and Lightning and Cruz continues to race side by side.
Cars 3, in general, is a very heartwarming movie about mentorship movie. It’s about giving up your ego to enhance someone else’s. It’s a movie about self-sacrifice and the joys of doing so. It’s a very touching passing the torch to the next hopeful kind of movie. This movie also turns out to be a girl power movie which I didn’t even realize until I’m sat here writing this sentence, because Cruz Ramirez only became a trainer because she didn’t believe that she could make it as a racer, I personally felt that Cruz could have been even wilder and louder in the movie but perhaps they’ll save it for another sequel.
This movie really hits a little too close to home for me as I am an athlete myself and I can relate to all the struggles that the characters in the movie are facing. This movie brings back the nostalgic feeling of the original Cars movie and I will be looking forward to another Cars movie if it means another movie that is similar to this. I highly recommend this movie.