Thursday, July 22, 2010

Toy Story

Last weekend, we caught Toy Story 3 at Iluma. I think the whole Toy Story franchise is just fantastic - the concept is so innovative and something all kids can relate to. I'm sure many kids at some point feel that their toys are like real companions, to see them actually come alive on the screen is really a kick to the imagination.

Toy Story has a very special place in our hearts because my kids watched it growing up. Toy Story 3 is especially poignant, it deals with issues of growing up and the emotions faced by all the different parties - Andy, his mum and the toys - in its characteristically heart-warming and touching way.

By the time Andre was 2 years old, he was already very taken by Toy Story 1 and watched it repeatedly on LD (yes, the now defunct format).

That Christmas, I ordered a Woody toy from ebay for him. When he opened the wrapper, his expression was priceless. He didn't whoop with joy, he just stood there staring silently at Woody in wonder, like he couldn't quite believe his eyes. This pic on the right pretty much captures it (sorry for bad photo, all the old photos are scanned from prints). At that age, Andre still wasn't talking much so his face said everything.

The rest of the day, I caught Andre carefully placing Woody in various positions and just staring at him. That night, he went to sleep with Woody lying next to him in the cot bed.

Seeing how enamoured Andre was with Woody, I eventually bought him a Buzz Lightyear too, but Woody remained his favourite, much like with Andy in Toy Story. In fact, after many rotations, Woody still sleeps in Andre's bed today.

Spoiler alert!! Towards the end of the movie, Andy parted with Woody and the rest of his toys because he realised that toys are meant to be played with. I understood this logically but I felt a pang in my heart because if it were me, I would never give up my long-time cherished toy. Of course it helps that I know my toys don't really come alive and have emotions to boot, LOL.

I probably have to explain that my kids, especially Lesley-Anne, are soft toy hoarders. Throughout their growing up years, they've grown attachments to lots of them. When Lesley-Anne was younger, she used to bring a soft toy with her everywhere she went. As a result, some of them have great sentimental value.

During the week, Lesley-Anne started digging up her old toys. Here were some of her favourites growing up. Right: the orange bear that she received for her first Christmas (which I thought was a hippo). In fact, this toy triggered the first word she ever uttered - not "mama" or "papa" but "bear".

This one on the left is not technically a stuffed toy - it's a bear haversack given to her by her grandpa. She brought it on every single holiday and it doubled up as a cuddly reminder of home at night.

On the left below is a giant sized Elmo which she had lots of fun with because it was larger than she was! On the right are Po and Lala, her beloved toys when she was going through the Teletubbies phase. Lala was a gift all the way from London, before it was available in Singapore.

And here are the toys again, not looking much worse from sitting in the toy box, reunited with their owner.


kjj said...

teletubbies!!! (omg, it was a horror watching that with my nephew then. i mean, it's crap storyline and it repeats itself! argggggggh!) i thot teletubbies were bad until i encountered barney and his horribly annoying friends! and none of them are cuddly?!

oh, wait, am i coming across to angsty??? i guess i'm missing josie and the pussy cats, jetsons, scooby doo (BEFORE they revamped and made strange changes to them), flintstones, tom & jerry (before they could talk), pink panther (!), etc.

sigh! - kjj

monlim said...

KJJ: Haha, you hate Teletubbies cos you're seeing it with the cynical adult eye lah. But I realise for kids up to 2 years old, esp before they can talk, many of those cartoons are beyond their comprehension. Even Sesame Street requires the child to have a basic understanding of dialogue and concepts, that's why Teletubbies was such a hit. Of course when they're older, all the cartoons appeal. My kids love Scooby Doo, T&J, Pink Panther, etc. But I did find Barney very annoying cos all the kids were so theatrical :P

Anonymous said...

Sweeeet!! Teddy bear has a fond attachment to me too. I remember having a teddy bear until I was in my tweenies! My gosh by then the bear had already become a stitched bear. A very used bear with lots of patches here and there. Most important it also had a smell that only I like but will keep everyone far away from it.LOL!!

~ my

monlim said...

MY: I have an old bear too! It's missing an eye but it's still grouchy and cute. I'm keeping it for posterity :)

Anonymous said...

Hi Mon,

Wow,impressive! How did you manage to find the relevant old pics whenever you need them in your posts? I have so so, oh so many pics stored in different formats that it's unthinkable just how to do it.


monlim said...

SC: L-A has an elephant memory plus a sentimental heart so she was the one who remembered the photos she'd taken with her toys! I know what you mean lah, so many old photos, some of them yellowing and falling apart in old albums, but I don't have the energy to sort them out, groan...

Anonymous said...

L_A was only a little bigger than the orange bear in her baby photo and now the bear looks so small beside her.

Teletubbies!! I remembered during the time (1997-1998), when teletubbies was so hot, I happened to grap the last one in Toy'R'us, this family was following me all around the toy shop until I went to the cashier to make payment. I could see from the side of my eyes that the parents and their children were very disappointed. There was also news that people in Britian were crazy over the teletubbies toys and how these people dashed to get the toys during the launch.


monlim said...

Chris: I remember! All of Singapore was waiting eagerly for the arrival of those toys and then they were all snapped up, it was so crazy. And they had ridiculous price tags too!!

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