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Posted to Movies at 06:45 PM on Jun 15, 2006

2006. Walt Disney Pictures/Pixar Animation Studios. Directed by John Lasseter and Joe Ranft. Starring the voices of Owen Wilson, Bonnie Hunt, Larry the Cable Guy and Paul Newman.

Is there a cooler cat than Paul Newman? Seriously, he's the coolest movie star ever. He's so cool, you don't even see his face in Cars, but he still manages to steal the show. His voice is so full of heartache and dignity that it leaves everyone else in the dust (so to speak).

I didn't have high hopes for Cars, but I loved it. It's not Finding Nemo, and it sure isn't Monsters Inc., but it's good. The casting is not what I'd call inspired and I hoped they'd go further with the animation. But still, it was a perfectly good use of ninety minutes.

That said: Owen Wilson is a funny guy, but his voice is not easy to listen to. It takes on a shrill, nasaly quality on occasion. My mom would say he was born to be a silent movie actor. After an hour of Wilson's voice, I wanted the movie to hurry up and end or at least for Paul Newman's character to do something really interesting.

I've been a big fan of Tony Shalhoub since Big Night, so I was glad to see him working in Monk's off-season. He plays Luigi, a car that seels tires, and in typical Tony fashion, he disappears into his role.

I guess the barometer of a Disney film is how long one's kids continue to talk about it after it's over. Mine already want to go and see it again.


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