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Patricia Puentes

“Toy Story,” “Finding Nemo,” “Lightyear”: All Pixar Movies Ranked

christian movie review for lightyear

Since Lightyear , Pixar’s 26th film, just dropped on Disney+ last week, it’s now easier than ever to watch all of the famous animation studio’s movies. With this in mind, we’ve ranked every Pixar film, from the groundbreaking Toy Story in 1995 onward.

Even though we relished a few of these animated classics, and even though the studio has a history of pushing the limits of storytelling with some of their more idiosyncratic and quirky offerings, there are still many criticisms that could be made about Pixar. 

The company has been chastised for sidelining women and people of color . Only one of the 26 movies in their filmography was solely directed by a woman — 2022’s Turning Red , which was directed by the Canadian Chinese filmmaker Domee Shi ( Bao ). While 2012’s Brave credits Mark Andrews and Brenda Chapman as co-directors, she was taken off the movie halfway through its production. 

The Mexican American Adrian Molina is credited as the co-director of Coco (2017) and the playwright Kemp Powers, who’s Black, was the co-director of Soul (2020). But you’ll mostly find an array of white male directors in Pixar’s roster. 

Pixar’s former head, John Lasseter ( Toy Story , Cars ), was ousted in 2018 after being accused of a pattern of workplace misconduct and sexual misconduct . Pete Docter ( Up , Inside Out ) replaced Lasseter as chief creative officer and has been credited for fostering more of an emphasis on diversity and inclusion at the company. 

In March of this year, Pixar’s LGBTQ+ employees and their allies released an open letter denouncing how Disney has censored same-sex affection in their films . (Disney purchased the animation studio in 2006.) Lightyear , which premiered on June 17, featured the first same-sex kiss and openly queer character in a Pixar movie. 

The Ranking Method

Let’s say there’s a method to the ranking here— a fairly scientific one. All of Ask Media Group’s editorial team members voted on the movies they’d seen, ranking them from 1–5. 

Here’s the system we used:

1     You can skip it 2     Meh 3     Good enough 4     Must-watch 5     Masterpiece

Our Social Media Editor Bryn Rich has watched the entire Pixar filmography but one title — Lightyear — and has lots of opinions on how the four Toy Story movies should be ranked. Per Bryn’s recommendation, it should be: “ Toy Story > Toy Story 3 >>>> Toy Story 4 >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Toy Story 2 .” Then there’s our Editor Lecia Brown, she admits not watching a lot of movies but she has seen a ton of Pixar ones with her godchildren. 

We averaged everyone’s votes but we also had in mind what critics and audiences at large have to say about these titles, so we added Rotten Tomatoes’ rankings — both the critics’ Tomatometer and the audience score — to the equation. As a result, each of the movies got a 1–5 score that determined their spots on the list. Here’s our final ranking of every Pixar movie. The titles have been organized from worst to best.

26. The Good Dinosaur (2015)

christian movie review for lightyear

What if the asteroid that destroyed the dinosaurs missed? Who would walk the Earth? Not sure many of us actually cared. Only one person on our team watched this movie and The Good Dinosaur was deemed Pixar’s first box-office disaster . That’s probably why it ended up in the last position.

25. Cars 2 (2011)

christian movie review for lightyear

The most generous members of our team have given this second installment of the car-talking and racing franchise a simple “Meh,” while others deem it perfectly skippable. Most of us didn’t even bother watching it. You’ll see that, when it comes to Cars , we aren’t exactly enthusiasts. We’re not alone either: this movie holds a 39% approval among critics and a paltry 49% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes.

24. Cars 3 (2017)

christian movie review for lightyear

The third, and hopefully last, entry in the Cars universe finds Lightning McQueen (voiced by Owen Wilson) trying to prove he’s still at the top of his game as a racecar. 

The film was decently reviewed when it debuted but the previous installment of this saga didn’t help its chances of warming our hearts or getting us into the talking-vehicles mode. 

23. Lightyear (2022)

christian movie review for lightyear

Our Editor Kate Bove was tempted to give Pixar’s newest entry a bare minimum 1 but she decided to bump it up to 2 just for the Black, Indigenous and queer representation in the movie. “I was happy to hear the voices of Keke Palmer, Uzo Adubo and Taika Waititi,” Kate says. And she makes a very fair point. Our Updates Editor Jenna Ciotta gave the movie a 3. So this is one of these cases where representation is doing a lot for this otherwise flawed title. 

Lightyear returns once again to the often-tapped well of Toy Story and explores the origin story of the Buzz Lightyear action figure the movie is based on.

22. Cars (2006)

christian movie review for lightyear

I’ve never found the idea of anthropomorphized vehicles very enticing. Most Pixar titles have been successful because they appeal not only to children but grown-ups too, but Cars most definitely felt like young-children fare. (And a way to sell toys.) What else can I say? Cars is the reason I never bothered watching Cars 2 or 3 . 

This film had some allure though. Actor Paul Newman voiced the blue Hudson Hornet Doc Hudson . It was one of his last projects as an actor.

21. Finding Dory (2016)

christian movie review for lightyear

With an overall score of 3.35 — when you average the team’s votes with the Tomatometer — things start getting somewhat interesting here. Granted, this is yet again another sequel and Pixar’s been lauded mostly for its original narratives. 

But there are still a lot of takeaways from this tale about the importance of found family and the pleasures of taking risks and even venturing to travel outside of your comfort zone. 

20. Brave (2012)

christian movie review for lightyear

Pixar’s first movie centering a female protagonist is number 13 in its filmography. The movie stars Scottish actress Kelly Macdonald as the voice of Merida, a headstrong young princess set on breaking with tradition and not marrying one of the sons of her father’s allies. Emma Thompson also stars as Elinor, Merida’s mother. 

What should have been Pixar’s big bet on female representation ended up diluted when director Brenda Chapman was removed from the movie. In the end, Brave was but an assortment of good ideas (and a bright red curly mane) that didn’t manage a solid enough story. 

19. Monsters University (2013)

christian movie review for lightyear

Let’s add yet another sequel to this list, this one to Monsters, Inc . (2001). I guess one of the advantages of animation is that you can do prequels without having to worry about digitally de-aging or recasting your protagonists. 

In Monsters University , we see Sulley (voiced by John Goodman) and Mike (voiced by Billy Crystal) meeting in college and learning how to be “Scarers”…

18. A Bug’s Life (1998)

christian movie review for lightyear

Probably the main issue with Pixar’s second film is that it premiered a couple of months after another animated title that also featured little bugs as its protagonists: Antz . The DreamWorks title boasted celebrity voice performances by Jennifer Lopez, Sharon Stone and Woody Allen — long before the sexual abuse allegations against the actor and director were newly reexamined in the HBO docuseries Farrow v. Allen (2021)

So you may have skipped A Bug’s Life altogether just because you felt you’d already watched the movie in its Antz iteration.

17. Luca (2021)

christian movie review for lightyear

We have lots of opinions about this dreamy coming-of-age story that sees its protagonist Luca (voiced by Jacob Tremblay) spending the most magical of summers in the Italian Riviera, eating gelato, riding bikes (and Vespas), swimming in the Ligurian Sea and shutting up that inner voice that tells him not to take risks (“Silenzio Bruno!”). The movie is also a metaphor for the idea of feeling different or excluded and what it means to feel like you belong. 

And while Luca can be seen as yet another example of Disney’s queerbaiting problem — where the attraction between the two sea monsters and teenagers gets teased but falls short of representation — Enrico Casarosa, the film’s director, has said they were thinking about race , and not sexuality, when making this movie about outsiders, but he’s happy the metaphor is being read in different ways. 

You can read our full review of Luca here . 

16. Onward (2020)

christian movie review for lightyear

After a few years in which Pixar had almost exclusively thrown sequels at us — Finding Dory (2016), Cars 3 (2017), Incredibles 2 (2018) and Toy Story 4 (2019), with the exception being 2017’s Coco — it was nice to enjoy a movie like Onward where you’d be pressed to describe its premise.

This movie has gotten a 1 from our Social Media Editor Bryn, a 2 from our Editor Kate, a 5 from our Editor Lecia and a 3 from me. So you could say we were most definitely divided. It’s still a great watch if you want to enjoy an adventure with a healthy dose of brotherly love. 

15. Toy Story 2 (1999)

christian movie review for lightyear

When it comes to the long-running Toy Story franchise, Bryn may be onto something because, in the end, our ranking resulted in more or less his take on how these movies should be classified.

But just so that we refresh your memory in telling all the Toy Story films apart, this is the one where a collector steals Woody (voiced by Tom Hanks), which forces Buzz (voiced by Tim Allen) and the rest of the gang to come to his rescue. 

14. Toy Story 4 (2019)

christian movie review for lightyear

The latest entry in the Toy Story property showed once again that Pixar knows how to execute a script perfectly. All of the story beats are there, but the fourth installment of Woody’s tale still feels repetitive and slightly formulaic. Yes, our gang of toys was — yet again — deeply invested in a rescue mission with a tight deadline.

Keanu Reeves, who voices the Canadian toy motorist Duke Caboom, contributed to some of the novelty and freshness of this story. But all in all, and even though it premiered in 2019, it felt a lot like the same dish Pixar has been cooking since 1995. 

13. The Incredibles (2004)

christian movie review for lightyear

We’re entering must-watch territory here as The Incredibles is the first movie on our list with a score higher than 4. Before superheroes started being ubiquitous at the movie theater, Pixar and director Brad Bird ( The Iron Giant ) devised this story about a family of supers where the patriarch is going through a midlife crisis. He wants to quit his boring job at an insurance agency and simply go back to chasing baddies. 

Fortunately, he has an exceptional family that’ll come to the rescue when he gets in trouble and needs them the most. 

12. Turning Red (2022)

christian movie review for lightyear

Pixar’s first film solely directed by a woman has already become one of our favorite 2022 movies . In Turning Red , Mei Lee (voiced by Rosalie Chiang) is a 13-year-old overachiever faced with the reality of entering puberty and poofing into a red panda every time she feels overwhelmed or stressed out.

The movie deals with the subject of learning how to handle your inner beast but also staying true to yourself. It has the added bonus of being set in 2002.

You can read Turning Red ’s full review here . 

11. Soul (2020)

christian movie review for lightyear

Pixar’s first movie with a Black lead protagonist and co-directed by a Black filmmaker — Kemp Powers — along with Pete Docter was only made in 2020, but it was a triumphant return of the studio to their unconventional fare in films like Inside Out (2015), Up (2009) or WALL·E (2008).

In Soul , Jamie Foxx voices Joe Gardner, a New York City music teacher and aspiring professional jazz pianist. He finally manages to make it into the jazz scene the same day that he accidentally falls down a manhole. As a result, his soul ends in the Great Before, the place where new souls find their personalities. Needless to say, Joe will desperately try to make it back to his old life. 

10. Incredibles 2 (2018)

christian movie review for lightyear

In the case of Incredibles, the second installment is most definitely superior to the first one. It also arrived at the perfect time, on the heels of the #MeToo movement and in a moment where there was a higher push to have parity when it comes to female characters in leading roles. 

So it was only fitting that in Incredibles 2 , Mr. Incredible (voiced by Craig T. Nelson) stayed home to take care of the kids while Elastigirl (voiced by Holly Hunter) took a job fighting crime. That being said — and even though the movie passes the Bechdel test — at the end of the day (and the movie) Incredibles 2 ’s feminism fell short . 

9. Ratatouille (2007)

christian movie review for lightyear

This story is about a rat who wants to be a professional chef and ends up helping a not-specially-talented restaurant employee to become a successful cook. You can classify it as one of the many imaginative titles in Pixar’s most creative era preceding 2008’s WALL·E and 2009’s Up . 

On the other hand, if the idea of a rodent in the kitchen makes you as uncomfortable as it does me, it may be a bit of a tough pic to swallow. 

8. Monsters, Inc. (2001)

christian movie review for lightyear

It’s difficult not to get moved by this story about a company that uses terrified children’s screams to obtain energy. Especially considering that the two leading monsters responsible for scaring kiddos — Mike Wazowski and Sullivan — are quite cuddly and adorable and end up realizing that they actually like young humans.

7. Finding Nemo (2003)

christian movie review for lightyear

Marlin (voiced by Albert Brooks) is an overprotective clownfish and single father of Nemo (voiced by Alexander Gould) after his partner Coral (voiced by Elizabeth Perkins) and all of their other eggs were killed in a barracuda attack on their quaint oceanic neighborhood. As a result of that incident, Marlin has become more than averse to any type of risk-taking.

But when the little Nemo finds himself lost and captured by humans, Marlin will have to venture into the great ocean to get his son back. He’ll have the inestimable help of Dory (voiced by Ellen DeGeneres), a Blue Tang with short-term memory loss.

6. Toy Story 3 (2010)

christian movie review for lightyear

If, like me, by this point, you’re having problems telling all of the Toy Story movies apart. This is the one with the mean-but-still-cuddly-and-cute-pink teddy bear Lotso (voiced by Ned Beatty). 

In this movie, the toys find themselves in a daycare center after having been donated by mistake. Convinced their human Andy discarded them, the toys feel a bit betrayed. Woody tries to convince them that it all was an accident but, more urgently, they realize that getting played with by toddlers is not for the faint-hearted. 

5. Toy Story (1995)

christian movie review for lightyear

Pixar’s first ever feature got a 4.5 score when we combined the votes from our editorial team with Rotten Tomatoes. The movie is a technological feat, even though if you watch it now you’ll notice how much animation has evolved in the last more than 25 years when it comes to textures, lightning, hair recreation and even the depiction of eyes.

But mostly this is a movie that has endured the passage of time for the story at its heart: that of the cowboy toy Woody learning how to cope with the idea that he’s no longer the only favorite toy to his human Andy and sharing that spotlight with the slightly vain Buzz. 

4. Inside Out (2015)

christian movie review for lightyear

We’re getting into prime Pixar territory here with a movie that offers a front-row seat into the inside of a teenage girl’s mind. The premise of Inside Out is that all of us are governed by a mixture of sadness, anger, fear, disgust and joy and that the key is to find the perfect equilibrium among all of them. Because too much of anything — even joy — can sometimes be unbalancing. 

3. Coco (2017)

christian movie review for lightyear

We have a soft spot for Coco at Ask, three of our editors gave this movie a 5 and another two members — me included —- think it’s definitely must-watch material. Directed by Lee Unkrich and Adrian Molina, this love letter to Mexico and its Día de los Muertos tradition gets the viewer to reconsider their relationship with their family, their passions, their loved ones who have already died and even music.

On top of this heartfelt story about the young Miguel (voiced by Anthony Gonzalez) and his dream of becoming a musician, Coco is just a beautiful colorful film to look at, especially in its portrayal of the land of our ancestors. 

2. Up (2009)

christian movie review for lightyear

What can I say? Up ’s sequence illustrating Carl (voiced by Edward Asner) and Ellie’s love story as a couple growing older together gets me every time. 

But after starting big and managing to make the viewer cry right at the beginning of the movie, the film also tells the tale of the 78-year-old Carl on his way to enjoy the adventure he’s been waiting for his whole life. 

When Carl takes off with his flying house propelled by balloons, he realizes the tenacious wilderness explorer Russell (voiced by Jordan Nagai) has stowed away in Carl’s house, set on getting another badge. What follows is a story of friendship, rebelliousness and the many places where you can find paradise.

Oh yes, and dogs really are obsessed with squirrels . 

1. WALL·E (2008)

christian movie review for lightyear

This cautionary tale that managed to capture a quite plausible and not-so-distant future if humans keep set on our continuous consumerism, disregard for the health of the planet, and obsession with screens, stars the little garbage-disposal robot WALL·E. When WALL·E meets the scout robot EVE — EVE is looking for signs of life on Earth where WALL·E still resides — WALL·E can’t help but fall in love with EVE.

What follows is a robotic love story, yes. But also a fable about the power of thinking outside the box, (literally) standing up and following our dreams. 


christian movie review for lightyear

christian movie review for lightyear

  • DVD & Streaming
  • Action/Adventure , Animation , Comedy , Drama , Kids , Sci-Fi/Fantasy

Content Caution

Lightyear 2022

In Theaters

  • June 17, 2022
  • Chris Evans as Buzz Lightyear; Keke Palmer as Izzy Hawthorne; Dale Soules as Darby Steel; Taika Waititi as Mo Morrison; Peter Sohn as Sox; Uzo Aduba as Alisha Hawthorne; James Brolin as Emperor Zurg; Mary McDonald-Lewis as I.V.A.N.; Efren Ramirez as Diaz; Isiah Whitlock Jr. as Commander Burnside

Home Release Date

  • August 2, 2022
  • Angus MacLane


  • Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

Movie Review

In 1995, we met a boy named Andy and his two favorite toys: Woody and Buzz Lightyear. The latter, of course, was the star of Andy’s favorite movie. “ This ,” Lightyear tells us before the story commences, “is that movie.”

In uncharted space, 4.2 million light years from Star Command, Buzz and his fellow Space Ranger Commander Alisha Hawthorne detect lifeforms on an uncharted planet.

Think they’re going to just fly by? Are you kidding?

After landing on the planet, the two of them—joined by a nameless, wide-eyed rookie recruit—set off to explore the swampy, vine-entangled world. “Rookies don’t help,” Buzz grouses. “They overcomplicate things.”

Still, Buzz isn’t one to miss a teachable moment. And as they step out onto the planet’s surface,  Buzz reminds our anonymous young recruit what it means to be a Space Ranger: “Respect the suit. Protect the universe. Finish the mission—no matter the cost.”

That’s about five seconds before wildly aggressive plants erupt from the planet’s innards and everything goes haywire. The vines almost drag our intrepid trio to doom nearly pull their ship—filled with 1,200 crewmembers—into the muck as well.

But Buzz Lightyear’s not about to stopped by a bunch of vines. Not on a good day, anyway. Then again, today’s not a good day for Buzz. Refusing the rookie’s help, Buzz leaps back on the craft and pulls back on the ship’s stick as hard as he can, trying desperately to get safely airborne.

It’s not enough: The enormous craft clips a cliff … and crashes.

Our heroic Space Ranger is utterly determined to “finish the mission—no matter the cost.” But he’s got an important lesson to learn: Sometimes, you can’t finish the mission all by yourself, no matter how many years you give it your all.

Especially when evil robots show up.

Positive Elements

Lightyear quickly shows that Buzz’s defining character trait—his indefatigable determination to solve problems and to rectify a terrible mistake—is also his biggest character flaw. Buzz will go to any length to right a wrong he’s committed. But depend on others for help? Well, that’s a lesson he learns very slowly.

Once Buzz and his cohorts settle into the reality that they’re marooned on a dreadfully organic planet (those nasty vines keep grabbing people), they set about brainstorming a way to repair their starship. That involves re-engineering a special hyperspeed fuel that Buzz alone keeps testing in small, fighter-like spacecraft aboard the mothership. So far, so good.

But with each attempt Buzz makes to test the fuel, Einsteinian physics kick in. Though Buzz approaches lightspeed for only a few minutes, years are passing back on the unnamed planet where his compatriots are shipwrecked. “Time dilation,” it’s called, an escapable reality, we’re told, of lightspeed physics.

In his final test run, some 62 years pass back on the planet. Buzz returns to find a whole new generation hunkered down under a laser shield and under assault from the robot minions of someone called … Emperor Zurg.

To repel them, Buzz will have to depend on the ability of a ragtag outpost of Space Ranger trainees stranded at a remote base near where Buzz crash lands: Izzy Hawthorne (his original Space Ranger partner’s granddaughter), Darby Steel (an elderly woman with a penchant for blowing things up) and Mo Morrison (a soft-spoken man ill-equipped for the rigors of being a soldier). Finally, Buzz has an intrepid “pet” cat, a robot named Sox, whose myriad abilities help keep the story moving forward as well.

Buzz, as noted, never lacks in the courage department. But gradually, his motley crew of trainee teammates helps him realize that he can’t do everything alone. And they exhibit plenty of courage and a willingness to sacrifice along the way, too.

A bigger question the movie asks ultimately revolves around how much we strive to change our circumstances and how we sometimes need to make peace with reality—even if that looks different than we’d hoped.

Spiritual Elements

Sexual content.

After one of Buzz’s hyperspeed testing runs, he returns to find that Alisha Hawthorne has gotten engaged. “What’s her name?” Buzz asks, implying that Alisha’s same-sex attraction has never been a secret to Buzz or anyone else. Her name , Alisha says, is Kiko . Later, we see the two women kiss to celebrate their 40 th anniversary.

Even though Buzz laments the fact that everyone on the ship is marooned because of his mistake, Alisha tells him, “I wouldn’t have met [Kiko] if we hadn’t gotten stranded.”

After one of Buzz’s next testing runs, he returns to find that Alisha is quite visibly pregnant. How Alisha is pregnant, given the fact that she’s married to a woman, is never explained.

Buzz’s last testing trip, as noted, correlates to more than six decades of time passing back on the planet, skipping an entire generation. We then meet Izzy Hawthorne, granddaughter of Alisha, who refers glowingly to her “two grandmas.”

I’ll return to some of the important implications of this same-sex relationship in the Conclusion.

Violent Content

Zurg and his robotic lackeys pursue Buzz and Co. for much of the movie. Myriad shootouts result in discombobulated robots and near misses to Buzz’s crew.

Robot appendages get blown off. Spacecraft battle and crash. Explosions and pursuit abound. Characters get temporarily swallowed up by vines that pull them below the planet’s surface.

All of this action has a very Star Wars -lite kind vibe to it. That said, Zurg and his menacing robots do have an ominous frowning red visage. Young or very sensitive children could be frightened by some of the more tense pursuit scenes.

Crude or Profane Language

We hear one use of the exclamation, “Shoot.”

Drug and Alcohol Content

Other negative elements.

When Buzz points his finger at Izzy and says, “To infinity and beyond,” she has no idea what he’s doing and asks, “Do you want me to pull your finger?” There are some gags about Mo needing to use a space sickness bag. “Do not vomit inside the vehicle,” Buzz warns him sternly.

As the story’s timeline stretches into many decades, new leadership isn’t interested in Buzz finishing his mission. But Buzz steals a ship to try to make it happen anyway.

If I were going to title this review conclusion, I’d call it, A Tale of Two Lightyears .

On one hand, Lightyear is exactly what we’d expect from the creative gang at Pixar who brought us Toy Story nearly three decades ago. Not only does this prequel deliver a rollicking sci-fi origin story, it winks lovingly at many classic films from the genre along the way. Older fans will smile at nods to films such as 2001 , The Black Hole , Wall*E , Star Trek , Star Wars , Battlestar Galactica , Apollo 13 and—of course— Toy Story .

Along the way, Lightyear tells an engaging, satisfying story about the fine line between determination and learning to accept others’ help. We’re also challenged to see that even when we think we’ve made irreparable, horrible mistakes, good can still come of them—even if that doesn’t look like what we’d initially planned.

Toilet humor and faux swear words are at a refreshing bare minimum here. The robots’ menacing gazes are almost the only thing, really, that might give parents of sensitive young ‘uns pause.

I wish that I could end my review here. But, alas, I cannot.

Earlier this year, controversy erupted in Florida when the state passed a law prohibiting teaching about LGBT issues to public school children from kindergarten to third grade. The law quickly came under fire from many in Hollywood and in left-leaning political circles. Pressure mounted on Disney to make a statement, since the company’s iconic theme park Walt Disney World resides in Orlando, Florida.

Disney didn’t initially respond. But according to multiple reports, Pixar reinstated a same-sex kiss in the film in response to the Florida law, using a film to comment on the political and cultural conversation and controversy about LGBT representation. Deadline.com’ s Dade Hayes writes:

“Pixar was one of the loudest voices criticizing Disney CEO Bob Chapek’s handling of the Florida bill, and said in a letter leaked to the press that the company had suppressed same-sex elements in Pixar projects.”

In recent years, we’ve witnessed growing inclusion of LGBT characters in movies and TV shows aimed at children. Disney has actually come under fire for being reluctant to participate in this trend.

Yes, we’ve had blink-and-you’ll-miss-it images of two moms with a child in the background, or verbal allusions to same-sex relationships. But Lightyear’ s depiction of a same-same relationship and multi-decade marriage catapults Disney to the vanguard of this cultural controversy.

To my mind, what’s most noteworthy here isn’t really the kiss that we see, but the fact that the film depicts everything around it as completely normal and unremarkable. Buzz obviously knows that Alisha is gay. The couple then gets married, has a child (the biological details there are never explained), and lives decades together, all without ever suggesting that this is anything other than how things are supposed to be.

This worldview is, pardon the pun, light years beyond LaFou’s giggling innuendo hinting at his attraction to Gaston in 2017’s Beauty and the Beast remake. Instead, it fully embraces a perspective on these issues in direct conflict with what Scripture teaches about the purpose and place of sexuality in marriage between a man and a woman.

For many fans of Pixar and Toy Story , Disney’s deliberate, intentional and political embrace of such a radical, activist position on this issue will come as an enormous disappointment. Buzz Lightyear is a beloved, iconic character. And apart from this issue, his origin is story is one that many families otherwise would have enjoyed.

But just as Disney feels it must take a particular stand on this cultural issue, many families with equally strong, sincerely held biblical convictions will likely choose to pass on Lightyear’ s advocacy of the LGBT agenda here.

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Adam R. Holz

After serving as an associate editor at NavPress’ Discipleship Journal and consulting editor for Current Thoughts and Trends, Adam now oversees the editing and publishing of Plugged In’s reviews as the site’s director. He and his wife, Jennifer, have three children. In their free time, the Holzes enjoy playing games, a variety of musical instruments, swimming and … watching movies.

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The Collision

Lightyear (Christian Movie Review)

Verdict: A solid and entertaining space adventure that contains all the expected hallmarks of a Pixar film, but also features its most prominent LGBTQ subplot yet.

About The Film

Pixar Studios is flying back into theaters. After stirring up controversy earlier this year with Turning Red , the animation studio now sets its sights to infinity and beyond . . . and sparks more controversy along the way.

Much of the pre-release discussion orbiting around the movie has been about the alleged same-sex kiss that was originally intended, then edited out, then (after backlash) reinserted. I suspect much of the post-release conversation will land on this topic as well. We’ll discuss it below, as it is definitely an important element for Christians to consider. But first, lets look at Lightyear as a movie.

christian movie review for lightyear

People have been confused about what this film is and how it relates to the classic Tim Allen-voiced Buzz Lightyear we all know and love. As the opening credits lay out, this is the in-world movie on which the Buzz Lightyear toy from the Toy Story franchise is supposedly based. In other words, Lightyear is the Star Wars of that fictional world. It’s a clever concept, though not as interesting in practice as in theory. It’s largely an excuse to use a recognizable property to tell an otherwise unrelated science-fiction story. Beyond the famous green and white space suits and a few mannerisms, there really isn’t much to connect Lightyear to Toy Story . Since the central premise is so meta, the story lacks some of the explosive inventiveness and freshness of previous high-concept Pixar movies, such as Soul, Inside Out , or even Turning Red . What it offers is an entertaining and well-crafted space adventure.

What Lightyear may lack in originality it makes up for in fun and excitement. I’ve criticized many recent Pixar films for taking themselves too seriously and sacrificing entertainment value in their exploration of more mature material. Lightyear doesn’t suffer from that problem. There are some of the emotional and introspective moments viewers expect from Pixar, particularly in the first third. After that, the story morphs into a full-on action adventure filled with thrilling scenes and plot twists.

christian movie review for lightyear

To accomplish his mission and defeat the evil Zurg, Buzz is joined by a quirky crew of junior cadets. All the members are endearing and entertaining. The breakout star is the hilarious AI cat companion, Sox, who steals the show much like Dug the dog did in Up. Lightyear is a consistently funny movie, with humor that feels earned rather than contrived gags.  

In the end, Lightyear may not be one of the best Pixar movies, but it’s a solid, entertaining space adventure that will appeal to younger and older audiences alike. This movie would be an easy recommendation if not for a forced LGBTQ subplot that casts a Zurg-sized shadow over the whole thing (see below). There is much to enjoy and appreciate in Lightyear , but Christians and parents will need to decide how (or if) they approach it.

For Consideration

Profanity: None.

Violence: None.

Sexuality: Here we go. Disney/Pixar has been dipping their toes into LGBTQ representation for a while, but they finally take the full plunge in Lightyear . While the discussion has surrounded a same-sex kiss, it’s more a subplot than an isolated moment. Two scenes encompass this storyline. In the first, Buzz (who misses 4 years every time he hyperjumps) comments on his female colleague’s engagement ring, and they discuss how she became engaged to a woman. The scene comes across as a blatant attempt to make a statement.

The second scene, longer and following shortly after the first, is a silent montage—similar to the famous “growing old” montage in Up —in which Buzz makes repeated hyper jumps as everyone around him grows old. To mark the passage of time, he visits his female friend’s apartment whenever he returns. Thus, in the montage, the film showcases the development of that same-sex marriage through the years, from marriage, to raising a daughter, to celebrating their 40 th wedding anniversary (which is the moment of the quick, much-publicized kiss). Christian parents will need to decide how to approach this material with their children. Other than one vague reference later in the movie, the LGBTQ subplot is contained to these two scenes.

Engage The Film

Cooperation and unity.

Overall, Lightyear is not quite as deep or mature as other Pixar films, but there are still several interesting and wholesome themes. Younger viewers will pick up on the theme of cooperation and learning to work together as a team. As a space ranger, Buzz is a lone wolf. He is good at what he does and struggles to trust others to help (particularly young people or rookies). Part of his character arc is learning humility and how he is stronger in a team than on his own. The film doesn’t necessarily do the best job at demonstrating his need for others (little the other characters do is of much consequence or actual help), but there is enough there to work as a visual parable for 1 Corinthians 12 .

christian movie review for lightyear

Living in the Present

Another theme the film explores is about embracing the life you’ve been given, not the one you wish you had. Lightyear’s arrogance leads to his ship and crew being stranded on an uncharted planet. He becomes obsessed with completing his “mission” so everyone can live the life they were supposed to live, not realizing that in doing so, life is passing him by.  

Verses that come to mind are Ecclesiastes 3 , “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens,” and James 4:14 , “Yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes.”

Daniel Blackaby

Daniel holds a PhD in "Christianity and the Arts" from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. He is the author/co-author of multiple books and he speaks in churches and schools across the country on the topics of Christian worldview, apologetics, creative writing, and the Arts.

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Copyright, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

Reviewed by: Keith Rowe CONTRIBUTOR

Copyright, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

Outer space science fiction

Hostile lifeforms

Malevolent robots

Time dilation

Another Woke Disney product that attempts to validate LGBTQ and Feminist idealogy

Makes Buzz’s inspiration and the story’s true hero his Lesbian friend, Aisha

Attempts to normalize the idea of two women marrying each other and having a baby

What about Gays needs to change? Answer — It may not be what you think.

What does the Bible say about same sex marriages? Answer

Read stories about those who have struggled with homosexuality

Copyright, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

W hile exploring an unknown planet, Buzz Lightyear ( Chris Evans ), Commander Hawthorne ( Uzo Aduba ) and Rookie Featheringhamstan ( Bill Hader ) are forced to make a hasty departure when they’re attacked by vine creatures. Buzz can’t quite steer the ship over the top of a jagged peak and the vessel crash-lands on the inhospitable world.

One year later, a small base has sprung up around the ship, constructed by the ship’s crew who’ve been roused from their suspended animation naps. These industrious pioneers also have designed an experimental spaceplane that might be able to achieve hyperspeed, which will allow Buzz to bring his crew home and complete his mission.

With each unsuccessful mission, Buzz returns to the base to find that everyone has grown older. When Buzz finally achieves hyperspeed, he comes home to a grim reality… the descendants of his original crew have been wiped out by an army of malevolent robots.

Does that synopsis make “Lightyear” sound kind of ho-hum and hard to follow for a kid’s movie ? It is.

If you find the plot hard to track, try apprehending the movie’s “meta” introduction, which tells us that young Andy from “Toy Story” (1995) first idolized his favorite toy (Buzz, not Woody apparently) while watching a movie starring the Space Ranger, and that “This is that story.” So, just to be clear, we’re watching an animated movie about an action hero that a kid in another animated movie also watched; and his toy, based on the action hero in the movie, becomes the co-star of four films. Somebody pass the Advil.

The opening sequence of “Toy Story 2” (1999) features a brief episode where Buzz cleverly defeats an army of robots and encounters the villainous Zurg. The action-packed sequence cleverly sets up the climactic confrontation and starts the movie off with a bang.

As exhilarating as the pulse-pounding preamble is in “Toy Story 2,” I couldn’t have handled an entire movie in the same style and at the same breakneck pace. Though the story here isn’t nearly as pedestrian as the dramatized video game in “Toy Story 2,” it has an overall campiness that the film’s handful of decent character moments can’t quite overcome.

“Lightyear” serves as an origin story for Buzz Lightyear and a loose prequel to the “Toy Story” movies. It gives us more details about the way Star Command and its Space Rangers operate. However, despite some nifty weapons, like the laser blade, and sweet-looking ships, like the XL-15, much of the movie is a pastiche of other sci-fi franchises, particularly “Star Wars” and “Star Trek.”

Buzz’ mission logs are an obvious rip-off of the captain’s log in “Star Trek.” Also, the visuals when the XL spaceship attempts to slingshot around a sun are remarkably similar to the slingshot sequences in “Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home” (1986).

Other than their bright yellow paint job, the hulking Zyclops robots bear more than a passing resemblance to the super battle droids in the “Star Wars” prequels. The capital ship Zurg commands is reminiscent of an Imperial Star Destroyer (the Arquitens Class command cruiser in particular). Buzz and his team come up with a plan to destroy Zurg’s mother ship, which will deactivate all the robots. This plan is virtually identical to the one hatched by the Gungans and the Naboo to destroy the Trade Federation ship, which deactivates all the battle droids in “Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace” (1999).

Spiritual Aspects

Aside from leaning on well-worn sci-fi tropes, the movie attempts to explore some adult themes, with varying degrees of success. The challenges inherent in colonizing an alien planet are addressed obliquely, but the dome-like protection, called “Laser Shield,” prevents a lot of dramatic tension and potential action scenes. To its credit, the movie references some science, like relative velocity and time dilation… pretty ambitious for a kid’s movie.

Also to its credit, the film subtly weaves an allusion to “Moby Dick” into its plot. After repeated failed attempts to reach hyperspeed, Buzz realizes his friends are getting older and are having kids and grandkids. At some point you’d think Buzz would stop, turn the mission over to a younger pilot and spend some quality time with his aging friends. But no, Buzz’ pride (Proverbs 16:18) won’t allow that.

Breaking the hyperspeed barrier is Buzz’ white whale. He risks everything to reach that goal. Sadly, obsession blinds him to what matters most in life; he never gets to say goodbye to Hawthorne and his other friends because he’s off flying a mission when they pass away. It’s a poignant moment for the audience, as we place ourselves in Buzz’ boots and consider the brevity of life (James 4:13-17) and what awaits us in the Great Beyond.

However, after learning that his friends have died (Hebrews 9:27), Buzz doubles down on his quixotic quest. With the space program scrapped, Buzz steals his old spaceplane, thereby violating the Eighth Commandment, “You shall not steal ” (Exodus 20:15). When the command center asks who’s in the cockpit, he lies (Proverbs 12:22) and says he’s part of the cleaning crew.

Other than the secondary themes of obsession and growing old, the movie’s main themes, which are hammered home over and over again in the dialog, are Buzz’ independence and the crew’s guilt beatings from making mistakes.

Buzz isn’t very likable at the beginning of the film. He’s arrogant, controlling (he detests autopilots) and overconfident (Buzz’ overestimation of his piloting abilities is what causes the ship to crash, which is the inciting incident for the movie’s many complications). He makes condescending remarks about the rookie and ignores the young man’s frequent attempts to lend a hand. In essence, Buzz is John Wayne in space.

Buzz’ narcissism is on full display when he makes mission logs. Dictated like a dramatic reading, these oft-embellished recordings are just to make him look good in the eyes of his superiors. Hawthorne calls out Buzz’ compulsion to record their missions and refers to his habit as “narrating” (not to be confused with “monologuing” in “ The Incredibles ”). The fact that Hawthorne tells him no one listens to his recordings doesn’t dissuade Buzz from making log entries during the rest of the movie. Add stubbornness to Buzz’ list of negative character traits.

As was mentioned earlier, the movie’s writers work overtime to highlight Buzz’ independent nature. At one point, Buzz says, “I’m better off doing the job by myself.” Later, he says, “I’m always sure.”

What does the Bible say about pride and HUMILITY ?

Fortunately, Buzz comes to see the value of teamwork. He gradually abandons his desire to control everything. He learns to accept the ideas of others and even delegates responsibilities he’d normally shoulder himself. Buzz’ loner leader turned team player story arc culminates with this admission, “I can’t do it alone. I need help.” Buzz’ transformative realization is also germane for those in the audience; we all need others in our life, and must learn to yield to a Higher Power .

A few characters beat themselves up over mistakes they make. The first is Buzz, who wants to court martial himself after crashing the ship. His all-consuming need to break the hyperspeed barrier is tied to the guilt he feels over waylaying the mission and placing everyone on the ship at risk.

Side character, Mo Morrison ( Taika Waititi ), expresses feelings of guilt over a mistake, as does Izzy Hawthorne ( Keke Palmer ). Izzy also experiences the crushing weight of expectations she’s placed on herself. She says, “I’m supposed to be as good as my grandmother.” Sadly, Izzy doesn’t realize that her Creator has a unique purpose (Romans 8:28) for her life, a separate path from her grandmother’s.

While guilt can be a useful emotion, it also can consume a person’s life, which isn’t healthy. The Good News is that there is One (1 Timothy 2:5) who can remove the guilt over past mistakes. If we confess (1 John 1:9) our faults, He promises to forgive the things we’ve done wrong. He died so we can have eternal life (Hebrews 9:15).

GUILT —How can I be and feel forgiven? Answer

FORGIVEN? —If God forgives me every time I ask, why do I still feel so guilty? Answer

Saving the worst for last, the movie features a homosexual (Romans 1:26-27) relationship. After returning from a mission, Buzz notices a ring on Hawthorne’s finger. Buzz must already know that Hawthorne is a lesbian because he asks, “Who is she?” (otherwise, he would’ve asked “Who is he?” or “Who’s the lucky person?”).

As Buzz checks in on Hawthorne after various missions, we see her in an apartment with another woman, and then later with the same woman and some kids. In one montage shot, we see Hawthorne kiss her female partner.

Surely, this is Disney’s influence on the story, since the company is brazenly pro-homosexual. It’s a sad, sad day when moviemakers foist an alternate lifestyle on impressionable young viewers. Unfortunately, unless they repent, their fate is sealed (Luke 17:2).

GAY —What’s wrong with being Gay? Answer — Homosexual behavior versus the Bible: Are people born Gay? Does homosexuality harm anyone? Is it anyone’s business? Are homosexual and heterosexual relationships equally valid?

Objectionable Material

OFFENSIVE LANGUAGE/VULGARITIES: There aren’t any expletives in the movie. However, there are a few instances of mild vain speech like “shoot” and “blast.” Several other fairly benign phrases, such as “you’re mocking me,” “dumb bugs” and “screwed up,” may concern some parents. A man mistakenly thinks Buzz wants someone to pull his finger—a fart joke done on the sly.

ALCOHOL/DRUGS: No alcohol or drugs here.

NUDITY AND SEXUAL CONTENT: The movie doesn’t have any nudity or sex scenes. However, there’s an awkward scene where Buzz explains that he and Izzy’s grandmother used to point their fingers at each other (and say “To infinity and beyond”). Though Buzz’s actions were completely innocent and appropriate, some characters misinterpret this as an act of impropriety. The only display of affection in the movie is the lesbian kiss mentioned above.

VIOLENCE AND GRAPHIC CONTENT: There isn’t any graphic violence in the movie, but there are several action sequences where characters fire laser guns at robots or slice through vine creatures with glowing laser blades. Giant flying bugs are blown apart or sliced in half by lasers. An arrow is shot through the head of one robot. Several robots are blasted and appendages or parts fall off their bodies.

There’s a scene where Buzz arms his team with guns and various other weapons from an armory. One character says he’s on parole and isn’t allowed to fire a gun. Buzz says their desperate situation warrants breaking the law… and he hands the person a gun.

During a battle with robots, some members of Buzz’ team throw grenades and fire different kinds of weapons. Again, there isn’t any blood or gore here, but you could make a pretty large mound of scrap metal from all the dismembered or demolished robots.

Final Thoughts

“Lightyear” is a disappointment on many levels . It contains the merest fraction of the movie magic that made the “Toy Story” franchise so wildly popular with kids, parents and critics alike.

Thematically, the movie is very adult, and aesthetically, it’s very dark. There’s little levity and very few funny lines in the movie. Plus, the hero isn’t very heroic for the first half of the film. Then there’s that Lesbian/Feminist ideology, which really sullies the movie’s innocence.

Though the production elements are top-notch, the story is lacking. I expect much more from Pixar (the quality of their movies has steadily declined since Disney bought the studio).

Still, “Lightyear” is educational. It teaches us the proper way to make a meat sandwich. It also leaves us pondering the big questions about life and the universe.

Like, what’s beyond infinity?

  • Violence: Moderate
  • Profane language: None
  • Vulgar/Crude language: None
  • Nudity: None
  • Drugs/Alcohol: None
  • Occult: None

Editor’s Note: Christian Spotlight recommends viewers SKIP this film. We also sadly recognize that the Disney company has for some time now become an active enemy of biblical Christianity.

Learn about DISCERNMENT —wisdom in making personal entertainment decisions

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christian movie review for lightyear

Buzz origin story is exceptionally animated and inclusive.

Lightyear Movie Poster

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Teaches viewers about the power of teamwork and ap

Promotes teamwork, family, empathy, perseverance,

Buzz is brave, thorough, determined, and loyal. He

Commander Alisha Hawthorne is Black and a lesbian;

The space rangers are attacked by sentient vines o

A character announces her engagement and is later

"Shoot," as well as mild bathroom humor when frien

Nothing on camera, but Disney-Pixar movies have to

Parents need to know that Lightyear is a Pixar-animated origin film for the character who inspired the Buzz Lightyear action figure from Toy Story . In the movie, space ranger Buzz (voiced by Chris Evans), his crew, and an entire spacecraft filled with people is marooned on an alien planet. Buzz's…

Educational Value

Teaches viewers about the power of teamwork and appreciating that even "rookies" can make important contributions.

Positive Messages

Promotes teamwork, family, empathy, perseverance, and human connection. Also encourages people to ask for help and value others' talents, even those of someone still new to a job or a mission.

Positive Role Models

Buzz is brave, thorough, determined, and loyal. He's committed to finishing his mission. Alisha is a courageous, caring, and encouraging commanding officer and friend. Izzy is eager to help and overcomes various obstacles to make a difference. Mo and Darby summon their courage and use their know-how to be part of Buzz's team.

Diverse Representations

Commander Alisha Hawthorne is Black and a lesbian; she's eventually shown with her Asian wife and their multicultural family. This is a milestone for Disney-Pixar, which has previously only hinted at this type of organic representation. Buzz's crew of helpers includes an older White woman, a culturally ambiguous man of color (voiced by Taika Waititi), and a young Black woman. Also body-type diversity.

Did we miss something on diversity? Suggest an update.

Violence & Scariness

The space rangers are attacked by sentient vines on an alien planet. The vines seem to swallow them. People build shields and use other tools/means to combat the hostile being on the planet. Zurg chases after Buzz and sends armed robots to capture him. Zurg personally wants to destroy Buzz. People fight robots with weapons, breaking the robots into pieces. Buzz fights with and outruns commanding officers who want to ground his mission.

Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Violence & Scariness in your kid's entertainment guide.

Sex, Romance & Nudity

A character announces her engagement and is later seen holding hands and kissing her wife at an anniversary celebration.

Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Sex, Romance & Nudity in your kid's entertainment guide.

"Shoot," as well as mild bathroom humor when friends misinterpret Buzz sticking his finger out to say "To infinity and beyond" as a "pull my finger" joke.

Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Language in your kid's entertainment guide.

Products & Purchases

Nothing on camera, but Disney-Pixar movies have tons of merchandise tie-ins including games, toys, apparel, and more.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Lightyear is a Pixar-animated origin film for the character who inspired the Buzz Lightyear action figure from Toy Story . In the movie, space ranger Buzz (voiced by Chris Evans ), his crew, and an entire spacecraft filled with people is marooned on an alien planet. Buzz's attempts to get everyone home end up transporting him far into the future, where evil robots controlled by Emperor Zurg ( James Brolin ) have taken over the planet. Sci-fi/action violence includes chases and weapons-based fights with robots, Zurg, and the planet's pesky vines. Positive diverse representation includes a Black lesbian supporting character who discusses her partner (and later wife) in a way that makes it clear that everyone supports her identity and relationship. This is a milestone for Disney-Pixar, which has only hinted at this type of representation in previous films like Finding Dory and Beauty and the Beast . Teamwork, perseverance, empathy, and courage are prominent themes, and the film encourages people to ask for help and value the talents that others bring to the table. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails .

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christian movie review for lightyear

Community Reviews

  • Parents say (40)
  • Kids say (37)

Based on 40 parent reviews

Not worth the time or money

What's the story.

LIGHTYEAR begins with a reminder that, in 1995, a boy named Andy was given a Buzz Lightyear action figure from his favorite movie -- and this is that movie. (In other words, this movie is not the origin story of Andy's beloved toy and Woody's best friend: This movie is positioned as the reason the toy existed in the first place.) The Buzz in this movie (voiced by Chris Evans ) is indeed a Space Ranger who takes his missions very seriously. While he's investigating an alien planet with his commanding officer/best friend, Commander Alisha Hawthorne ( Uzo Aduba ), and a rookie who has a lot to learn about being a space ranger, sentient vines start entangling them and their spacecraft, and all 1,200 passengers end up marooned there. Trying to fix the spacecraft, Buzz volunteers to undergo a series of test flights (with help from a brilliant therapy cat robot named Sox) to see whether they're capable of achieving hyperspace and getting off the planet. But Buzz discovers that each flight costs him time -- four years or more. In between test flights, he reconnects with Alisha and her growing family (wife, son, and eventually granddaughter). But once the lonely and singularly focused Buzz finally breaks the hyperspace code, he finds that an army of killer robots and their leader, Emperor Zurg ( James Brolin ), are terrorizing the planet. Buzz must work with a misfit group of three inexperienced space ranger cadets -- eager young Izzy ( Keke Palmer ), kind Mo ( Taika Waititi ), and jaded explosives specialist Darby Steel (Dale Soules) -- to help defeat Zurg.

Is It Any Good?

With its fabulous animation, honorable hero, and lovable sidekicks, this tribute to a host of space adventures is a story of perseverance, teamwork, and friendship. This version of Buzz Lightyear is ideally voiced by Evans, who already has that perfect Captain America halo of courage, loyalty, and hard work. For him, finishing a mission is paramount -- even above his own comfort or sense of belonging. His relationship with Alisha/Commander Hawthorne is a highlight, because they have complementary strengths and trust and respect each other. Aduba does a lovely job of expressing the commander's concern, love, and humor for her space ranger partner/bestie. Similarly, Palmer, Soules, and Waititi are hilarious as the ragtag trio who test Buzz's ability to rely on others, ask for help, and act as a patient and encouraging team leader. And Peter Sohn 's scene-stealing portrayal of Sox the brilliant and candid robo cat is sure to delight viewers of all ages.

Director Angus MacLane impresses with the technical excellence of the movie's animation: Textured hair, Sox's fur, and the aggressive vines are as amazingly detailed as the epic landscapes of space and the planet on which all the action takes place. Composer Michael Giacchino's score is spot-on for '90s blockbusters, and the script tips its hat to nearly all of the big space-based films, from 2001 to Star Wars and back again. And Disney takes a big step forward (for them) on the representation and inclusion front by featuring a Black lesbian character. There's no coming out necessary for Commander Hawthorne; Buzz knows that his best friend's partner would be a "her," just as she knew he would need Sox because he'd end up lonely after all the time jumps. Animated movies need more organic inclusion, and Lightyear handles it in a natural way. Ultimately, although Lightyear isn't at the top of Pixar's "heartwarming" (and heartrending) scale, it's far more than the cash cow some viewers expected.

Talk to Your Kids About ...

Families can talk about whether Lightyear brings the Toy Story franchise to a satisfying conclusion. Do you think the movies feel complete, or would you want more Lightyear sequels?

What positive diverse representation did you notice in the movie? Why are representation and inclusion important?

What did you think about the violence and peril in the movie? Is it age-appropriate? Why, or why not? How much and what kinds of violence are OK for younger audiences?

Movie Details

  • In theaters : June 17, 2022
  • On DVD or streaming : September 13, 2022
  • Cast : Chris Evans , Keke Palmer , Taika Waititi
  • Director : Angus MacLane
  • Inclusion Information : Female actors, Black actors, Indigenous actors, Polynesian/Pacific Islander actors
  • Studio : Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
  • Genre : Family and Kids
  • Topics : Adventures , Friendship , Robots , Space and Aliens
  • Character Strengths : Courage , Empathy , Perseverance , Teamwork
  • Run time : 100 minutes
  • MPAA rating : PG
  • MPAA explanation : action/peril
  • Award : Common Sense Selection
  • Last updated : February 17, 2023

Did we miss something on diversity?

Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.

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Should Christian parents allow their children to see “Lightyear”?

christian movie review for lightyear

Originally published on Denison Forum

Lightyear , the new animated PG film from Disney Pixar releasing in theaters this weekend, is the movie that inspired the Buzz Lightyear toy in the Toy Story movies. It’s effectively a movie within a movie.

The film looks stunning, but it’s making headlines for a different reason.

Lightyear will show one of the main characters, Alisha Hawthorne (Uzo Aduba), kissing another woman in greeting. The lesbian couple has a child. Buzz Lightyear (Chris Evans) spends much of the movie becoming friends with Alisha’s grandaughter through a time-distortion mishap. 

The first Toy Story released in 1995. Those who grew up with Woody and Buzz are now adults with their own children. And if those adults are also Christians, they’re likely all asking the same question: Should I take my kids to see Lightyear ?

Lightyear ’s gay-affirming scene

Hawthorne’s display of affection makes Buzz rethink his priorities, which makes the gay relationship relatively important to the plot . As Christians, we can see that this reflects the normality and acceptance of homosexuality. Disney planned to remove the kiss , but in response to protests from their employees and the disparagingly named “ Don’t Say Gay ” bill, Disney kept it in. We should expect nothing less from Hollywood and the world. Movies are often a pulse on the culture’s heartbeat.

So, in response, how should we act as Christians?

With love, the same way we would at any other time.

Even while we don’t love sin, we love people. So how do we become culture-changing Christians? We engage with people as image-bearers of God, and we become “cultural missionaries,” fighting the temptation to become “cultural warriors.”

When we become friends with someone living a gay lifestyle, we should let them know about our beliefs but only after establishing trust with them. If they are Christians, we should lovingly present the biblical truth to them in correction (2 Timothy 3:16). If you’re not sure how, start by reading Dr. Jim Denison’s resource, “ What does the Bible say about homosexuality? ”

We avoid judging anyone while still naming homosexuality as a sin, like we name premarital sex and adultery as sexual sins.

Teaching children about sex and LGBTQ sexuality

The acceptance of LGBTQ sexuality comes from the “ rise and triumph ” of the idea that we can invent ourselves. The emphasis on sex and individuality that our culture pushes should not corrupt Christians, who know that the Bible provides a beautiful, purposeful design for sex (Proverbs 5:18–19).

Is sex an important part of life? Certainly. We are “sexed” beings, male and female.

Is that fact the primary thing in life? Certainly not. God is.

As Christian parents, we should raise our children up to reject the cultural idea that we can invent ourselves into whoever and whatever we want. Instead, we must turn to find our identity in what is most secure: God’s design for us and his unending grace. 

With that said, we should also teach our children about sex. Even though it’s uncomfortable, it’s best coming from the Christian parent. Otherwise, other children, schools, or the culture-at-large will teach them. If you’re not sure when to start talking to your kids about sex, I highly encourage you to read “ When should I start talking to my kids about sex? ” Christian Parenting has guidelines for every age. Pure Hope also has a more extensive, free resource on how to talk to your kids about sex. Specifically though, we need to understand how to talk to kids about homosexuality. For that, I would recommend this episode of “Dear Mattsons.”

Should I take my kids to see Lightyear ?

In my view, you certainly can if you’ve talked to your child about the nature of LGBTQ sexuality in a biblical context. Of course, if your child is sensitive to these issues, then you should listen to your gut and not allow them to see it. However, because gay relationships are already established as normal in day-to-day life, preparing them for that reality is better than trying to cover it up—but only when they’re ready. This decision should occasion a great deal of prayer.

In fact, this movie may be popular enough to force you to say yes or no to your child. If your answer is no, you must be prepared to explain why, because the movie will frequently come up in conversation, advertising, and toys. If the answer is yes, you can take time to prepare them for the scene. This movie is the first notable children’s movie that forces the issue of LGBTQ relationships in an unambiguous way. It is probably the first of many.

Again, preparing them at the right time is key. A child too young will only be confused, and it will make your work as a parent more difficult. But, if they are old enough and have had that talk, this movie could be a good occasion to discuss the issue.

Some might disagree with me. I humbly accept I may be wrong, but let’s think consistently on this issue, especially with teens in mind: Do you watch movies that include people having sex outside of the confines of marriage to one person? If we allow our teens to watch movies with those concepts, what are we communicating to them? I would argue we’re communicating that gay relationships are “bad,” but unmarried sex between a man and a woman isn’t bad (or not quite as bad). Both are sinful and outside of God’s measure for us.

My point is that we must prepare them for the world, not try to entirely remove them from it. The world will teach them to engage in casual sex , to idolize sex, and to allow their feelings to determine their sexuality, including their sexual preference and their gender (1 Thessalonians 4:4–8).

Should Christians boycott Disney?

Boycotting has been largely unsuccessful on issues that are already entrenched in the culture and that don’t directly harm anyone. On other issues, boycotting has had mixed success. For example, activism against pornography’s exploitation of minors, the sex trade, and sexual abuse led to many credit card companies no longer approving purchases on Pornhub . In the Civil Rights movement, boycotts were also successful. However, boycotting Chick-fil-A by LGBTQ activists did not work well. Neither did the SBC’s boycotting of Disney the first time. 

It is entirely justified to boycott a company if it affirms the killing of unborn children, sex trafficking, or some other directly harmful evil. However, boycotting movies with themes of homosexuality may unnecessarily hurt our witnesses. Even though we believe homosexuality isn’t biblical, a boycott seems unlikely to affect anything or change anyone’s mind. It also won’t take down the reputation of Disney, nor affect it economically in a noticeable way.

We should probably reserve boycotting for when something brings direct harm to folks, especially the most vulnerable. The culture already has the foundation for the homosexual lifestyle.

With that said, we can see why Disney hasn’t done this sooner. Fourteen mostly Islamic-majority countries have banned movies that overtly display LGBTQ affections. As predicted, Saudi Arabia banned the movie on Monday, as well as Indonesia and Malaysia . Lightyear might not air in China either.

While I’m not arguing that you should go see Lightyear , I don’t think you necessarily shouldn’t either. If your conscience speaks otherwise, listen to it—and the Spirit first and foremost.

Recommended books

Three books stand out in helping us understand God’s redeeming purpose for those with gay attractions. The authors are three scholarly students of the Bible and all have different experiences, but all affirm biblical morality on the issue.

  • Single, Gay, Christian by Gregory Coles. He relates his struggle with homosexuality and his life story. He reflects on how a loving pastor and church community helped him in his faith, including his journey to understand the biblical perspective.
  • Gay Girl, Good God by Jackie Hill Perry. Hill Perry is a spoken-word artist, poet, and theologian. She is also a mother. Her story is one of redemption from a lesbian, lost lifestyle, leading her to find the Lord (and, eventually, her husband).
  • Is God Anti-gay? by Sam Allberry. Allbery has written extensively on biblical sexuality and here briefly argues for the biblical perspective while sharing his personal struggle with same-sex attraction.

These will not only help readers understand the biblical perspective but also the experiences of redeemed Christians who have lived with same-sex attraction.

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christian movie review for lightyear

Mark Legg is an Associate Editor for Denison Forum. He graduated from Dallas Baptist University in 2021 with a degree in Philosophy and Biblical Studies. He wants to eventually get his PhD in philosophy so that he can teach and write as a professor. He loves craft coffee, traveling the world, taking walks, and yes, writing (even in his free time).

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"Pixar Goes Fully Woke"

christian movie review for lightyear

What You Need To Know:

Miscellaneous Immorality: Title character steals a small spaceship.

More Detail:

In LIGHTYEAR, Pixar goes fully woke in its new TOY STORY movie that’s supposed to be the movie that launched the Buzz Lightyear toy, where the movie features Buzz Lightyear as a Space Ranger who tries to fix an error he made that stranded he and his fellow Ranger buddies on an inhospitable planet. The real hero in LIGHTYEAR isn’t Buzz, but is actually his lesbian friend, Alisha, who becomes an inspiration for Buzz and for Buzz’s new friend, Alisha’s granddaughter, a plot that promotes the LGBT, anti-male, feminist ideology.

The movie opens with Buzz and his friend, Alisha Hawthorne, landing on a strange planet. Alisha forces Buzz to take along a rookie Space Ranger with them, even though Buzz hates working with rookies. Their spaceship is filled with Space Rangers who are in suspended animation.

On the planet, the three Rangers encounter a system of underground vines that grab any living thing walking on the planet’s surface. The planet also has hordes of attacking flesh-eating bugs.

With the rookie in tow, Buzz and Alisha rush to their spaceship. With Buzz at the helm, the spaceship starts to speed away. However, a steep mountain gets in the way, and Buzz fails to clear the peak completely, and the spaceship crash lands.

Regrettably, during the crash, the spaceship’s hyperspace crystal was destroyed, so the large ship is stuck on the planet. The Space Rangers make do and eventually construct an experimental ship and a new crystal. Despite his mistake, Buzz is the best pilot, so he’s assigned to take the ship into space to achieve 100% hyperspace power.

However, Buzz fails to achieve 100% power. He returns to the planet only to find that, because he was flying at nearly the speed of light, everyone, including Alisha, has aged four years. Alisha greets Buzz on his return and informs him she’s gotten engaged. Buzz immediately asks Alisha who’s the lucky woman, and Alysha tells him her name. Later, when he enters his room, he finds that Alisha has given him a robot cat companion named Sox.

Buzz and Sox keep trying to fly ships into space to achieve 100% hyperspace power. And, they keep returning to the planet to find the people are much older until Alisha finally dies, leaving behind a granddaughter named Izzy.

However, 62 years later, Sox discovers the right formula to reach full hyperspace power. When the new commander tells Buzz they’ve decided not to try any more test, Buzz steals a ship and finally achieves full hyperspace power. However, Buzz and Sox return to find that the planet has been invaded by an army of ruthless robots controlled by Zurg, who’s trying to steal the hyperspace crystal.

LIGHTYEAR constantly places obstacles in Buzz’s way. Some of the obstacles are of Buzz’s own making, such as his aversion to rookies and the guilt that haunts him because he made the mistake that stranded the Space Rangers. The obstacles make for an exciting story.

However, unlike the other redemptive movies in Pixar’s TOY STORY franchise, inspiring entertainment is not the sole goal in LIGHTYEAR. Instead, the whole movie is held captive by a contentious agenda of politically correct politics. To whit, the whole movie is centered on an LGBT, radical feminist, anti-male ideology. In fact, Buzz Lightyear isn’t really the hero in the movie. The movie’s real hero is Buzz’s female friend, a lesbian, who marries another woman and becomes pregnant, presumably by artificial insemination. Together, the two women raise a son, who marries a woman and has a daughter. During this whole story, there’s no mention of a grandfather. Instead, Izzy, the granddaughter, mentions at one point that she has two grandmothers. To top it off, there are no references to Izzy’s father, including no scenes of her interacting with her father. Thus, the movie’s whole story seems to be a politically correct validation of LGBT ideology, including an attack on masculinity and the traditional nuclear family.

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christian movie review for lightyear

MOVIE REVIEW: ‘Lightyear’

christian movie review for lightyear

NEW YORK (CNS) — “Lightyear” (Disney) blasts off in cinemas with controversy in its wake.

In what is becoming a bad habit for the Mouse House (witness the “pro-choice” theme in “Turning Red,” or the heroine with two moms in “Dr. Strange in the Multiverse of Madness”), Disney injects the objectionable into what would otherwise be wholesome fare for the entire family.

In the case of “Lightyear,” a “Toy Story” origin story, same-sex marriage is the issue. A prominent female character, Alisha Hawthorne (voice of Uzo Aduba), gets engaged to a woman, shares a kiss, marries and raises a family.

The endorsement, unnecessary and regrettable, is, sadly, the only takeaway from “Lightyear,” a gloomy and decidedly unfunny tale of the fan-favorite space ranger, Buzz Lightyear (voice of Chris Evans).

Alas, there’s no buzz in this Buzz. The delightful self-absorbed goofball of four “Toy Story” films is melancholy, uncertain and in need of a good therapist. He finds one in a robotic cat called Sox (voice of Peter Sohn).

The story, by Jason Headley and director Angus MacLane, also lacks pizzazz. With a crew led by his ranger sidekick Alisha (together they coin the catch-phrase, “To infinity and beyond”), Buzz pilots a spaceship to an uncharted planet named Tikana Prime.

Encountering hostile life forms, the crew evacuates in haste, but the ship crashes. Lost in space, the castaways establish a colony while awaiting a rescue.

One year passes, and Buzz volunteers to test a new fuel source which could hold the key to escape. The test has an unexpected side effect: For every minute he spends in the air, four years pass down on the planet.

Headstrong and determined, Buzz perseveres, and 62 years pass by. Alisha is now a grandmother, and her granddaughter, Izzy (voice of Keke Palmer), seeks to follow in her ranger footsteps.

Meanwhile, things are not going well down on Tikana Prime: robots commanded by Emperor Zurg (voice of James Brolin) have invaded the planet.

Buzz rises to the occasion, assembling a motley crew to attack Zurg’s ship, including Izzy, Mo Morrison (voice of Taika Waititi) and Darby Steel (voice of Dale Soules). Throw in Sox and you have the usual merchandizer’s dream.

Missing from “Lightyear” is the joy, wonder and humor of the Disney-Pixar space classic “Wall-E.” Instead there are echoes of classic sci-fi TV and films, from “Star Trek” and “Star Wars” to “Alien.”

Buzz, it turns out we hardly knew you -– and after “Lightyear,” maybe wish we didn’t.

The film contains cartoonish action sequences, a same-sex kiss and a benign view of same-sex marriage. The Catholic News Service classification is A-III — adults. The Motion Picture Association rating is PG — parental guidance suggested. Some material may not be suitable for children.

McAleer is a guest reviewer for Catholic News Service.

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Going To Infinity and Beyond – Has Lightyear Gone too Far?

Who doesn’t love the Toy Story franchise? Woody and Buzz are staples in many homes with kids (and adults). In fact, Woody is currently sprawled out on my kitchen table and I fully expect him to move when nobody is in the room. So it would make sense to see Lightyear as soon as it hit theaters. However, I have learned to preview every movie that is released. In the latest Disney Pixar movie, we are treated to Andy’s favorite movie and the reason why he fell in love with Buzz. This Pixar Lightyear Christian Movie Review will give you the info you need before viewing this movie with your children.

Lightyear is a prequel to the Toy Story franchise and stars the voice of Chris Evans as Buzz Lightyear. In the movie, Alisha Hawthorne plays the part of Buzz’s friend, space ranger, and eventually the commander. She is a lesbian. The film has brief scenes that depict her relationship and includes a same-sex kiss. 

My husband and I paid for our own tickets to preview this movie for the purposes of this review. This was done in an effort to bring an unbiased review to you. For details on how I conduct reviews, read HERE!

Disney Pixar Lightyear Christian Movie Review

Disney Pixar Lightyear Christian Movie Review Synopsis: 

Movie studio synopsis: From Disney and Pixar comes an animated sci-fi action-adventure — the definitive origin story of Buzz Lightyear (voice of Chris Evans), the hero who inspired the toy. “Lightyear” follows the legendary space ranger on an intergalactic adventure alongside ambitious recruits, Izzy, Mo, and Darby, and his robot companion Sox. As this motley crew embark on their toughest mission yet, they must learn to work as a team to escape the evil Zurg and his dutiful robot army who are never far behind.”

Buzz Lightyear with his kitten Sox

In the year 1995, Andy watches a movie about Lightyear and becomes obsessed. He wants a Buzz Lightyear toy. And what young boy (or girl) doesn’t want a cool Buzz Lightyear action figure modeled after a real space ranger. But in this movie, Buzz is not a solitary space ranger. There is an entire crew of space rangers. 

Actually, Buzz is a test pilot/astronaut/space ranger. 4.2 million miles from Star Command, Buzz and Alisha Hawthorne detect life on an uninhabited planet and go down to explore taking a rookie space ranger with them. The planet erupts with aggressive plants and flying giant insects attacking the rookie. Buzz fights off the aggressive planetary species on his own. In fact, he is determined to do everything on his own. The trio eventually makes it back to the spaceship and attempt to leave the planet. However, Buzz ends up crash landing “the turnip” (Buzz’s nickname for the ship) back on the planet. 

Buzz Lightyear with fuel cell crystals

Can Lightyear successfully complete his mission and get the entire crew back to Star Command? Will they be able to reproduce a fuel cell on an uncharted planet? And will Buzz learn the ultimate lesson that no man can work alone?

Disney Pixar Lightyear Christian Movie Review – What Parents May Want to Know

Positive elements:.

Lightyear’s fellow space ranger, Alisha, gives a robotic personal companion cat to him named Sox. Sox is cute and a highlight in the movie.

Additionally, Lightyear is determined to complete the mission and not give up until he has succeeded. His determination is inspiring. 

What You May Need to Know:

While there is no foul language in this film, there are a few instances of “adult jokes” that were not funny and will definitely go over most kids’ heads. 

There are numerous scenes with lasers, blasters, shooting, and fights with robots. Additionally, there are scenes with plants that grab humans and pull them underground and monstrous flying attack insects. 

The majority of the fighting scenes include humans and robots.  Evil Emperor Zurg is huge and may be scary for some children.

In a few scenes, there are Star Wars type fighting. Also, a couple of scenes are reminiscent of the Omnidroid from The Incredibles. (While we are talking about other movies, at times it did have a Star Trek vibe and reminded me of a few episodes with Captain Kirk fighting strange creatures on uncharted planets.)

Sexual Content & Other Content:

Several months ago, Disney announced that they had reinserted a scene supporting the LGBTQIA+ audience. Lightyear attempts multiple test flights, and with each flight, he returns 4+ years in the future. Buzz has a brief interaction with Alisha after each return trip. We see Alisha engaged, married, with a small child, and then with an adult child. 

The scenes that show the relationship between Alisha and her wife are depicted in the following manner: Alisha says she is engaged and Buzz says, “What’s her name?” Alisha responds, “Kiko.” The viewer sees through a series of scenes, Alisha and Kiko in various stages of their relationship including pregnancy, with a small child, celebrating their child’s graduation, celebrating their anniversary, and the same-sex kiss. There is limited dialogue through these scenes.

There is also a scene where Izzy Hawthorne (who is the granddaughter of Alisha and Kiko) refers to her two grandmas. 

Also, there are visual references to rainbow colors giving a nod to all things PRIDE such as a rainbow crystal and rainbow confetti.

There is a death of a main character, however, some children may not even pick up on the death. It is done with great sensitivity.

Chris Evans plays Lightyear

Teachable Moments:

If you are ready to have discussions with your children about same-sex marriage, this film depicts the loving relationship between two women in a tasteful manner. 

This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Affiliate, I do earn a small commission from qualifying purchases.

My Review Recommendations:

My recommendation is two-part. Aside from the same-sex kiss, this is a movie that will entertain young Buzz fans, however, it is quite lackluster. When I was leaving the movie, I usually watch and listen to the overall audience’s reactions. There was one young boy who exclaimed, “I loved this movie.” However, the rest of the audience was pretty somber as if they had just watched a documentary. 

While walking out, I asked several adults their thoughts, and heard over and over, “It was okay,” or “It’s nice to be back in the theater.” There was no excitement  or, “This is a great movie.”

Furthermore, there are just major plot holes and things that will just make your scratch your head and wonder how they even came up with that idea. Obvious this is sci-fi, but the movie defies logic all while sprinkling words in like hyperspeed and other terms aimed at making you think it sounds intelligent.

So my recommendation based on the movie alone is wait until it comes out on Disney+ streaming or Blu/Ray, or DVD.

Regarding the same-sex kiss, the inclusion of this gives LGBTQIA+ families representation and is done in a tasteful manner. However, for many Bible-believing Christian families this is an area where they will not compromise, and they will not want to see this movie. Read More of my thoughts below.

Buzz Lightyear in his room with robot kitten Sox

Cast of Disney/Pixar Lightyear:

Chris Evans as Buzz Lightyear

Keke Palmer as Izzy Hawthorne

Peter Sohn as Sox

James Brolin as Evil Emperor Zurg

Tanka Waititi as Mo Morrison

Dale Soules as Darby Steel

Uzo Aduba as Alisha Hawthorne

Mary McDonald-Lewis as IVAN a voice-activated navigation system

Efren Ramirez as Airman Diaz

Isiah Whitlock, Jr. as Commander Burnside

Time Peake as Tim from Mission Control

Bill Hader as Featheringhamstan

Director: Angus MacLane

Executive Producer: Pete Doctor

Producer: Galyn Susman

Composer: Michael Giacchino

Screenplay by: Jason Headley

Angus MacLane

Story by: Angus MacLane

Matthew Aldrich

Jason Headley

MPAA Rating: PG for action/peril

Release Date: June 17, 2022

Run Time: 109 minutes

Frequently Asked Questions:

Are there any end credits scenes.

Yes, you should stay until the end – the very end. There is a scene in the middle of the credits and there is a scene at the very end. While your life will not be changed by these scenes, they should be watched.

When Will this movie be released on DVD or Blu-ray?

It is estimated to be released on September 23, 2022

Is this movie available for streaming?

Lightyear should be available for streaming on Disney+ in the future. Expect an August 2022 release date.

What countries are not playing Disney Pixar’s Lightyear?

Due to LGBTQ+ content, this movie will not be shown in 14 Middle Eastern and Asian countries and will most likely not open in China. The countries include United Arab Emirates, Malaysia, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Egypt, Indonesia, and Kuwait.

Additionally, in Singapore, it is being released with an NC16 rating due to “overt homosexual depictions.”

Homosexuality is criminal in many Middle Eastern countries.

Is there a same-sex kiss in Lightyear?

Yes, two women briefly kiss. 

Who has voiced Buzz Lightyear? And why isn’t Tim Allen voicing Buzz in the Lightyear movie?

In the original Toy Story Series and Buzz Lightyear of Star Command: The Adventure Begins, and Toy Story Racer, Tim Allen voiced Buzz Lightyear. However, Chris Evan’s voice is the one used in the new Lightyear movie. Additionally, Patrick Warburton (Kronk from The Emperor’s New Groove) played the voice of Buzz in the animated Buzz Lightyear of Star Command.

Javier Fernandez-Pena voiced the Spanish Buzz in Toy Story 3 and Hawaiin Vacation. Teddy Newton voiced Buzz in Small Fry. Pat Fraley voiced Buzz in Toy Story Treats and a few video games. Additionally Mike MacRae did the voice of Buzz for video games.

According to Disney, Allen played the voice of the toy while Chris “Evans voiced the actual Buzz Lightyear, bringing a ”Captain America” vide to the swashbuckling character.

Further thoughts Regarding Disney/Pixar’s Lightyear:

As Hollywood continues to become more and more progressive, they alienate the Christian audiences. Chris Evans has publicly stated that anyone who doesn’t believe as he does are idiots. If you oppose diversity and on-screen representations, you will eventually “die-off like dinosaurs.” Evans has said, “The real truth is those people are idiots.” He also said, “That the goal is that we can get to a point where it is the norm and that this doesn’t have to be some uncharted waters. That eventually this is just the way it is.”

Furthermore, there has been criticism aimed at Disney Pixar for not casting Tim Allen as the voice of Buzz Lightyear and instead choosing Chris Evans. I personally followed Chris Evans on Twitter for years. He is caustic and condescending towards those that don’t hold his beliefs. There is no civil discussion. I think Chris Evans portrayed Buzz in the same caustic fashion. I think Tim Allen would have added a lovable feature to Buzz that was lacking.

Obviously, Hollywood and Disney have spoken and they are at odds with Christian values. Keep in mind we are called to love everyone while proclaiming the good news of Jesus Christ. Prayerfully consider how God wants you and your family to respond to the ever-changing world around us.

If this review was helpful to you, please share. We make no money from the entertainment industry and are a family just like yours trying to live out our Christian faith.

Other Movie Reviews:

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Lightyear Christian Movie Review

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I don’t understand why talking to your kids about homosexuality is even required here. It’s a background plot and kids won’t notice, unless an adult is like “oh hey, did you see those two women over there raising a family.” I don’t understand, why does THAT warrant extra time and not the other sinful parts? Buzz is mean to others at the beginning. Buzz struggles with guilt, even after it’s clear that everyone else forgives him for crashing the ship. Also, there’s attempted murder several times! Surely the selfishness, self-flaggellation and attempted murder are more relevant sins than the lesbians who raise a good son and a wonderful granddaughter. I don’t understand how some people make anti-homosexuality their whole worldview. If watching old Buzz try to murder young Buzz doesn’t turn your kids into murderers, then why the fear about the well adjusted family? Frankly, they’re the best examples of love in the whole movie. They love Buzz even as he’s hurting himself and others. If heterosexuals do a thing, and homosexuals do the same thing, but you have a problem with the homosexuals, then how can one say with a straight face that they love their neighbor? If they can’t even watch their neighbors be represented on screen without anger, then it doesn’t seem like there’s much love there.

Thanks for the review, I hope parents and kids watch this movie and enjoy it.

From audience reaction; if you have Christian morals, viewing an immoral or depicted act from a character or person in real life cannot be forgotten. “Character” as we know it, holds fast and that person or character keeps that reputation. For a movie, it is the same. One single act cannot be forgotten.

I agree! We did not take our children to this movie. Since I do movie reviews as a ministry, I felt compelled to screen this one. I will continue to review movies until I am called to move in another direction.

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christian movie review for lightyear

While spending years attempting to return home, marooned Space Ranger Buzz Lightyear encounters an army of ruthless robots commanded by Zurg who are attempting to steal his fuel source.

Dove Review

This fast-paced, high-energy movie features a lot to like. The characters are memorable, and we learn about the origins of Buzz Lightyear (voiced by Chris Evans). The first  Toy Story  movie premiered in 1995, and Buzz Lightyear was a space ranger toy that Andy loved, based on a movie he had seen. Well, apparently,  this movie  is supposed to be the movie that Andy saw. Although Chris Evans does a good job voicing Buzz, it took me a while to adjust, considering Tim Allen had previously voiced Buzz for the four  Toy Story  installments. From what I understand, the director wanted a different actor for this movie as he wanted the character to be more serious and straight forward.

Buzz is partnered with a woman named Alisha Hawthorne (Uzo Aduba), and she is a loyal and capable assistant. She aids Buzz in his various quests, but Buzz makes a few trips to space on his own, and Alisha ages while Buzz only ages by seconds. I could hear a few kids exclaiming their excitement as Buzz uses a saber-like space rifle, runs from trouble, and meets various potential catastrophes head-on while in flight. One of the positive elements of the film is Buzz’s determination to finish each mission he begins.

Not that there aren’t a few concerns for families to be aware of. In the film Alisha becomes engaged to a same-sex partner, Kiko. After Buzz returns from some hyperspeed testing runs, when Alisha mentions her engagement, Buzz asks, “What’s  her  name?” He was obviously aware of her same-sex attraction.  And one partner becomes pregnant, although how that happened is not explained. In a later scene, we see time has passed and Alisha is celebrating her 40 th  anniversary with Kiko, and they briefly kiss. These scenes are brief, but will be a concern for conservative families and parents would probably wish to discuss the scenes with the kids.

There are, thankfully, some good moral lessons, such as needing help from others. Buzz tends to be independent, but he gets into a few jams which requires the help of his fellow agents. Previously, he was asked by a rookie if he was sure of a decision. “I’m Buzz Lightyear,” he replies. “I’m always sure!” Yet later, in one scene, he is working with new rookies, which includes Alisha’s granddaughter, Izzy (Keke Palmer) and Alisha and a few others wind up trapped in a red tube. Buzz is trapped by himself and hopes to push them toward a device that will free them. But Alisha convinces him that if he joins them in their tube, together they can extricate themselves from the trap, which they do. Another new-and fascinating character, is Sox, a mechanical cat, that has a lot of knowledge and helps Buzz out on occasion. He also provides comic relief. In one scene, Buzz is ready for sleep, and Sox provides “white noise” for him to sleep by and it’s a humorous moment. But Sox and his ability to help is not to be questioned, as he releases a few darts to Buzz’s enemies, putting them to sleep.

The gadgetry is interesting, including I.V.A.N. (Internal Voice Activated Navigator), which guides Buzz while on his missions. Buzz and company must also battle slug-like aliens which are quite revolting looking. Although I found the story to be, for the most part, interesting and ever moving, I did find one reveal about the evil Emperor Zurg, Buzz’s ultimate enemy, to be a clunker. It changes what we know about Zurg in the original  Toy Story  movies, and the revelation just didn’t really work for me. However, the comedic moments work well, such as when Sox joins rookie space rangers to help Buzz. After a frightening event, his response is, “That was utterly terrifying, and I regret having joined you!’

Buzz has his humorous moments too. In one scene, he wants to touch fingers with a fellow ranger, and say, “To infinity-and beyond!” But the rookie, not understanding, asks, “Are you trying to get me to pull your finger?” In addition, the movie shows the audience a possible future. Sandwiches in the future have two pieces of meat on the outside, and one piece of bread in the middle, so as to cut down on the bread. And, as one ranger says, “You’re able to lick the juice off the meat!”

The movie is not Dove approved. There may be some parents who may be fine with their children watching the movie, but due to Disney’s stance on same sex relationships, parents with a strong biblical worldview will want to pass on seeing this film with their children.

The Dove Take

Despite the concerns raised, this movie does a good job in showing the need for the help of friends, and in completing what one begins.

Dove Rating Details

New rangers do their best to help Buzz; Buzz is determined to finish each mission; characters save lives.

A same sex couple become engaged, and years later we see the women briefly kiss as they celebrate their 40 th  anniversary.

Some space violence with slug-like mechanical enemies; laser rifles shoot at characters; Zurg attacks good guys; ships are blasted; close calls in characters fleeing from the bad guys.

More Information

Film information, dove content.

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Becoming Christians

Every christian's journey toward eternity…, should christians watch the lightyear movie.

Lightyear, the latest movie from Disney Pixar, is making headlines today. Not because of how great the movie is, but what it features during the movie.

If you are familiar with the well-loved classic movie, Toy Story, you would easily recognize the main character, Buzz. However, it is far from its conservative stance decades ago.

In the movie, Alisha, one of the main characters, is seen to be kissing another woman in greeting. She and the other woman are actually a lesbian couple and they have a child.

christian movie review for lightyear

That’s where the backlash is coming from, especially from Christians. Not only that but some countries, especially Muslim countries, have banned the movie.

Thus, as an individual Christian, should you watch Lightyear knowing that it promotes same-sex relationships? Or, should you just steer away from the movie, boycott it like what others have done, and discourage other people from watching it?

[If you want to watch films with great spiritual lessons, I highly recommend you read, “ Top 10 Christian Movies of All Time You Should Watch Tonight .”]

To watch or not to watch Lightyear?

If you ask me, personally, I don’t want to watch the movie and I don’t like my son to watch it as well.

This world is bent on shoving into our throats the immorality they are promoting. As true believers of God and followers of Jesus (Yahshua), we shouldn’t support sexual immorality or any lifestyle that promotes homosexuality.

christian movie review for lightyear

It seems to me, that Disney Pixar has an open idea to normalizing homosexuality. The greatest problem I see here is that they are incorporating these things into their movies. Movies that are primarily targeted at young children.

Children are still innocent. In their young minds, what’s morally wrong can be right in their eyes. Without the proper guidance of parents, they can easily believe that same-sex relationships are normal and should be accepted.

There’s a great and real danger we see around us and even children’s animated movies, which we think are harmless, can be used by Satan to promote immorality.

Lightyear will not be the last

We are living in a world that’s increasingly becoming secular day by day. The moral decay of our society will get worse and worse as we approach the Second Coming of our Messiah.

Thus, Lightyear’s lesbian kiss will not be the last. There will be more of them that will come up, especially in children’s movies.

Netflix movies homepage

This will make it more and more difficult to avoid.

As for me, I won’t let my kid watch it. However, if the time comes that he is old enough to understand, the movie can be used as a teaching moment. 

It’s an opportunity to explain to your child or anyone else the biblical design of marriage and relationship. 

You can explain what God expects from us, why He doesn’t approve of homosexuality, and what should be the right way to get married.

Of course, to watch this movie and not say anything to explain biblical teachings should never be an option.

Called to a higher standard

It’s easy to quickly make a stand against films or movies that promote immoral lifestyles. However, we must remember that if we are making a stand against Lightyear, we must also do the same with other movies that promote other sins.

Think about it for a second: a lot of movies today normalize premarital sex, adultery, violence, witchcraft, and so much more. There are even protagonists who commit criminal acts and yet, they are glamorized by movies.

That’s why it’s never easy to be a true follower of Yahshua. You would need to go against this world. The Bible says that we are in the world but not of the world.

We are called to a higher standard. While the world spirals down into moral decay, we should and must make a stand.

It’s not enough to simply say not to movies with homosexual or immoral themes. It’s not enough to simply not watch Lightyear. It’s not enough to simply avoid them.

You have to make the right choices in everything you watch, listen to, and even subscribe to.

We are called to do the right things, not the easy things.

As the Bible clearly tells us:

8 Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things. Philippians 4:8

We are commanded to fill our minds with the things that are true, noble, just, pure, lovely, of good report, virtue, and praiseworthy.

Now, if you consider this, it’s really tough to constantly do these things.

Yet, we are called to a higher standard. 

We are called to do the right thing and not the easy thing.

Thankfully, with God’s help, we can do our best and He’ll do the rest.

Our Christian calling does not end in just avoiding movies like Lightyear, but it should be our lifestyle. Our Christianity should reflect in everything we think, say, and do.

Recommended Movies

If you wish to watch films that will actually benefit you spiritually, then you have to watch these Top 10 Christian Movies of All Time . I’m confident you’ll love the movies I have included in the list.

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    christian movie review for lightyear

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