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Cars (2006)



Average Rating: 6.9/10
Reviews Counted: 196
Fresh: 145
Rotten: 51

Critics Consensus: While the story may not reach the high standards of Toy Story and The Incredibles, viewers of all ages will marvel at the technical brilliance of the animation and come away satisfied.

Average Rating: 6.9/10
Reviews Counted: 47
Fresh: 36
Rotten: 11

Critics Consensus: While the story may not reach the high standards of Toy Story and The Incredibles, viewers of all ages will marvel at the technical brilliance of the animation and come away satisfied.


Average Rating: 3.7/5
User Ratings: 872,937


Movie Info

Lightning McQueen, a hotshot rookie race car driven to succeed, discovers that life is about the journey, not the finish line, when he finds himself unexpectedly detoured in the sleepy Route 66 town of Radiator Springs. On route across the country to the big Piston Cup Championship in California to compete against two seasoned pros, McQueen gets to know the town's offbeat characters--including Sally, a snazzy 2002 Porsche, Doc Hudson, a 1951 Hudson Hornet with a mysterious past, and Mater, a … More

Action & Adventure , Animation , Kids & Family , Comedy
Directed By:
Written By:
Kiel Murray , John Lasseter , Phil Lorin , Dan Fogelman
In Theaters:
Nov 7, 2006
Box Office:
Buena Vista - Official Site


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Critic Reviews for Cars

All Critics (200) | Top Critics (47) | Fresh (145) | Rotten (51) | DVD (35)

Rips off Doc Hollywood, almost note for note.

December 14, 2006
Denver Rocky Mountain News
Top Critic

Along came the interstate, apparently, and ruined everything. Just like that darned Internet, I guess, or that superhighway stuff, or those dumb movies they make with computers nowadays.

June 12, 2006
New Yorker
Top Critic

Cars might get us into car world as a gimmick, but it doesn't get us into car world as a state of mind. Thus, the animation, rather than seeming like an expression of the movie's deeper truth, becomes an impediment to it.

Full Review… | June 9, 2006
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic

Though the central idea of nostalgia for a quieter, small-town life may well be lost on this movie's young audience -- Cars finds a pleasant and often sparkling groove.

Full Review… | June 9, 2006
Seattle Times
Top Critic

Cars made me want to hop in my jalopy and to head out to Route 66, bypassing the boring interstate highways that made the Mother Road redundant.

Full Review… | June 9, 2006
Toronto Star
Top Critic

It's beautiful to look at. The talking cars feel more alive than talking cars should.

Full Review… | June 9, 2006
Orlando Sentinel
Top Critic

'Cars' has energy and heart-two things that 'Robots' lacked.

Full Review… | October 23, 2013
Movie Metropolis

Cars is a nice homily to small town life and remembering the past - which definitely has its charms - and call for remembering our roots, but it's been done better elsewhere.

Full Review… | March 10, 2011

Unlike other Pixar releases, Cars does not cross over to adults as well as Finding Nemo or The Incredibles. But kids will love it, and isn't that what this type of animation is all about?

Full Review… | July 7, 2010
Matt's Movie Reviews

Pixar's latest visual stunner with a heart of gold honors our obsession with the automobile. Although it will make many nostalgic for the open road, especially the historic Route 66, the kids might get a little bored with this one.

Full Review… | September 8, 2009

Pixar's grown so metallic that having automobiles for animated characters becomes disturbingly apt

Full Review… | August 30, 2009

Although the plot coasts along a predictable path, the verbal jokes and sight gags rev things up along the way, making the film enjoyable almost from start to finish.

Full Review… | June 6, 2009

I've never seen a Pixar film so void of magic, and originality before...

Full Review… | April 29, 2009
Cinema Crazed

Owen Wilson's infectious good-natured energy permeates Pixar's light-hearted animated movie about "Lightning McQueen" a rookie competition race car that discovers there's more to life than winning races.

Full Review… | April 23, 2009

This noisy animated paean to NASCAR and Route 66 gets mired in the middle laps on a grippy track.

Full Review… | April 23, 2009
Boston Phoenix

Cars is Pixar's most improbable success to date, a film that could easily have misfired, but somehow does not.

Full Review… | October 29, 2008
Decent Films Guide

Here it is, another masterpiece from director John Lasseter and his fellow geniuses at Pixar Animation Studios, once again raising the bar out of reach of everyone but themselves.

Full Review… | August 7, 2008
Sacramento News & Review

Despite its technical accomplishments, Cars feels less Formula One than Ford Fiesta.

Full Review… | June 23, 2008

One of these days, the magicians at Pixar will make a bad movie%u2013or even a mediocre one%u2013but it hasn't happened yet.

Full Review… | February 28, 2008

The rote melancholy song by Randy Newman evokes more laughter than compassion.

Full Review… | July 14, 2007
Big Picture Big Sound

It's never a good sign when the funniest, most entertaining part of a movie are the closing credits.

Full Review… | April 8, 2007

There's a lot of heart and soul--complemented by some of the most eye-popping visuals the computer-animation pioneer has ever devised.

Full Review… | February 22, 2007
Film Journal International

Cars is not Pixar at its very best but it's immaculately drawn, full of surprises and beautifully voiced. It also moves at an astonishing speed.

Full Review… | January 20, 2007
Observer [UK]

Beautifully animated, and the story is great.

Full Review… | November 30, 2006

In Cars Pixar has come up with a strong story, beautiful images, intriguing themes, and endearing characters.

Full Review… | November 7, 2006
Movie Metropolis

Audience Reviews for Cars


Cars is a fun, entertaining and exciting animated feature that boasts a well crafted story that is sure to entertain fans of Pixar. Although not the greatest effort from the studio, Cars is lots of fun from start to finish. The voice is terrific and the animation is very well done as usual. Even if this film isn't perfect, there are still plenty of good moments to be had with this film. Although the film doesn't break new ground, it's a worthy addition to the studios track record of fine animated features. I enjoyed the film, and felt it was a worthwhile viewing. The film may not the finest Pixar film, but it delivers memorable entertaining that is fun for anyone looking for an amusing film. Cars is entertaining for what it is, but is not a Pixar classic by any means either. The jokes are good, and the cast do a good job in their roles. The story has heart, and is lots of fun if you're in the right mood. The characters are great, and varied. Pixar may have made better movies, but this one is still worth seeing if you loved the other films in the filmography. This is yet another stunningly animated feature that delivers what you'd expect from Pixar. The film has a few flaws, but there are enough good moments to be had here to make it a pleasant viewing experience. Cars adds nothing new to the Pixar formula, but it does retain everything you've enjoyed from previous films that they have made. Entertaining, funny and memorable, what more can you expect from a film that brought you classics like Toy Story and Monsters Inc. Cars is not a classic, but it's nonetheless fun entertainment for what it tries to do.

Jeff "The Dude" Lebowski

Super Reviewer

Much different in delivery and impact for Pixar. Cars is a visual treat, as only Disney and Pixar could do, but the enigmatic script may be skeptical to its viewers. Nonetheless, the film is a CGI dream and is magnificently mapped out landscape-wise. 4/5

Eugene Bernabe
Eugene Bernabe

Super Reviewer

Cars is Pixar's least marketable film for their more mature adult audience by far. I mean, talking racecars? Sounds like something for you to fall asleep at while your children lap it up from start to finish. This is half the reason it has taken me this long to even see it. It didn't help that the critical reception (at the time) was Pixar's lowest by a fair margin (although still pretty positive). I am happy to report that lack of excitement for this movie caused me to be completely surprised by how well done it actually was. There's a lot more depth in the characters and story than I thought there would be, even if it doesn't quite reach one of their best works like "Up" or "Wall-E". To me, this can go right alongside Ratatouille, Monsters, Inc, and other strong efforts by Pixar that just don't quite reach the upper echelon of animation. This is not a negative statement in any way. You can't knock it out of the park every time, but a solid base hit gets things going sometimes. Cars has the laughs, heart, strong story, and absolutely gorgeous animation you expect from a Pixar production. Don't be dissuaded by the kiddie nature of the premise. This is a fine motion picture.

Josh Lewis

Super Reviewer

So many people trash this film just because the plot is familiar and formulaic. Following a formula is not bad within itself, it is what is done with it that matters. This movie does the "big city guy in a small town" concept very well, and the novelty of seeing a world ruled by cars is pretty fun. The characters are surprisingly endearing and the animation remains as brilliant as with any Pixar effort.

Christopher Heim
Christopher Heim

Super Reviewer

Cars Quotes

My name is Mater.
Lightning McQueen:
Yeah, like "Tuh-Mater", but without the "Tuh"! What's your name?
Lightning McQueen:
You, you don't know my name?
Oh, I know your name. Is your name Mater too?
Lightning McQueen:
– Submitted by Anna F (14 months ago)
Dusty Rust-eze:
Don't drive like my brother!
Rusty Rust-eze:
Oh, don't drive like my brother!
– Submitted by Alexandria P (17 months ago)
The King:
You have more talent in one lug nut than a lot of cars have in their whole body. But you're stupid.
– Submitted by Alexandria P (17 months ago)
Lightning McQueen:
I'm becoming one of them!
– Submitted by Bobby K (2 years ago)
Will you turn that disrespectful junk off?
Respect the classics man, it's Hendricks!
– Submitted by MarieBella C (2 years ago)
Lightning McQueen:
Hey thanks for coming, but we're all set. He's letting me go.
Sally Carrera:
He's letting you go?
Lightning McQueen:
Yeah, your job's pretty easy today. All you gotta do is stand there and let me look at ya. Let's just cut to the chase. You, me, dinner. Ka-chow!
Sally Carrera:
Lightning McQueen:
[revs engine] Oh, I'm sorry. Did I scare you?
Well, just a little bit, but I'll be alright!
– Submitted by Kitty K (2 years ago)

Discussion Forum

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