It’s been a bit of a rocky road for Pixar’s Lightyear. The movie, designed to play as the big sci-fi blockbuster that inspired the Buzz Lightyear toys seen in the Toy Story movies, has only grossed about $115 million in U.S. theaters and $213 million worldwide, making it the second-lowest grossing movie in Pixar’s long history. (Only Onward earned less money — and that film was released just days before the Covid pandemic began shutting down movie theaters around the world, making it a slightly unfair comparison.) Along the way, Tim Allen, the voice of the original Buzz Lightyear from the Toy Story movies, publicly voiced his frustration with the film, saying it had “no relationship to Buzz.”

Obviously, this was not the return to theaters Pixar was hoping for after the pandemic. But you know what? Lightyear kind of got a bum rap. It was not the studio’s best movie, but it was far from the worst. In my own review I wrote, “the impetus to make this film might have been to find a new way to capitalize on people’s love of Toy Story, but it’s still an entertaining and sometimes surprisingly tender adventure movie. (It would probably stand fine on its own for someone who’s never heard of Toy Story.)” 


If you’ve been holding off on Lightyear because of the mixed reception, you’ll get a second chance when the film debuts on Disney+ next month. Pixar and Disney announced today the film will be available to stream there on August 3.

The movie stars Chris Evans as the voice of Buzz, a hotshot Space Ranger who accidentally crashes his ship on a remote planet and then must figure out a way to get his crew back home. Doing so begins to take him to infinity and beyond in an extremely literal way, leading to a surprising series of plot twists and an appearance by Zurg, the bad guy toy featured in Toy Story 2 and the Buzz Lightyear of Star Command cartoon movie from decades ago — which has a surprising among in common with Lightyear.

If you can’t wait until next month, Lightyear is still playing in movie theaters around the country.

Sign up for Disney+ here.

Every Pixar Movie, Ranked From Worst to Best

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