I never really got into the Cars franchise so I didn’t get around to seeing the first Cars or Cars 2.

However, I'm assuming that you don't have to have seen 1 and 2 to know what the Cars films are all about (racing?) and that the third instalment is more of a stand-alone movie.

The first thing I have to say, is that I thought the film was very entertaining and had some good characterisation between the assorted automobiles.

News Shopper:
Mcqueen in the lead

It’s six years now since Cars 2 and number 3 opens with our hero, Lightning McQueen (voiced once again by Owen Wilson) psyching himself up for his next big race.

News Shopper:
'Jackson Storm'. The new breed of Hi-Tech racer

Unfortunately, times are a changing. There is a new breed of hi-tech racing car led by an arrogant rookie racer called Jackson Storm (voiced by Armie Hammer). McQueen is full of confidence as he passes Storm but when he sees Storm pass him, he is horrified that he does not have the power to catch him up and McQueen runs himself into near destruction as he crashes out of the race.

News Shopper:
Lightning McQueen crashes out!

The TV media start to announce that McQueen is too old and should retire and leave the racing to the new guys and one by one McQueen sees his racing pals put out to pasture.

Not all is lost though as McQueen’s new sponsor Sterling, (Nathan Fillion, TVs Firefly/Castle), takes a chance on the ex-champ and enrols him into his own hi-tech training facility. Sterling also pairs up McQueen with his own personal trainer with a young female car by the name of Cruz Ramiraz (Cristela Alonzo, apparently, she has her own TV show in the US?)

Cruz makes a good addition to the Lightning McQueen team, even if she does slip up and call McQueen her ‘Senior Project’!

News Shopper:

However, this new-fangled technical training regime with its hydraulic simulators, isn’t for McQueen and the pair revert to using the old-school methods and set out to find the famous ‘Smokey’ (Chris Cooper) and pals who trained the late great ‘Hudson Hornet’.

News Shopper:
Old 'Smokey' and pals.

McQueen gets to learn some old tricks and becomes fighting fit to prove that he can outwit these new wannabe racers. Basically, that is pretty much the plot.

From what I can gather, most of the old favourite characters are still here and Lightning McQueen in the #95 car also gets an upgrade on his paint job.

I must admit I did enjoy this film and although I’m not a great fan of too much animated CGI, the movie looks spectacular, especially in the race sequences, using some great close-up angles and there is also a very clever action-packed Demolition Derby scene.

News Shopper:
Demolition Derby

I now know that this film has caused rumblings of controversy with some critics and public user reviews about the direction that the storyline was heading to but then this is an animated movie for kids and adults shouldn’t take it too seriously.

News Shopper:
Lightning McQueen and trainer Cruz

I’m sure this third instalment will be a popular film with all young kids and the thirty-something big kid next to me absolutely loved it!

In cinemas July 14, 2017

Certificate U
News Shopper: