The new Toy Story 4 trailer is here, but what song plays over the footage? After getting a marketing campaign started with a few teasers and a Super Bowl spot (which focused on introducing the new characters), Pixar is finally ready to peel back the curtain on the larger, overarching narrative of their latest movie. Today, they unveiled the next theatrical preview, which sheds some light on the story. As implied by the trailer, the main plot sees Woody try to help new toy Forky overcome an existential crisis by teaching him how wonderful it is to be a toy, but Woody's perspective on life is challenged when he's reunited with Bo Peep. After being offscreen for 20 years, Bo's dramatically changed and wants Woody to wake up to the world around him.
Like most Pixar films, Toy Story 4 has the potential to be a humorous and heartfelt adventure that puts audiences through the proverbial emotional wringer. Indeed, the advertising has played into this somewhat; the original teaser released last fall was set to Judy Collins' rendition of "Both Sides Now," a reflective tune about life's ups and downs and how it's all hard to understand. This latest trailer follows suit with another selection that may render viewers to tears.
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The official Toy Story 4 trailer is set to the Beach Boy's iconic track "God Only Knows," which originally appeared on the band's 1966 album Pet Sounds. The song's been featured in numerous television shows and movies over the years, including Boogie Nights and Love Actually.
UPDATE: The film's recently-released final trailer makes use of "Livin' Thing" by Electric Light Orchestra
Similar to the use of "Both Sides Now," the lyrics of "God Only Knows" should give people a vague idea of what Pixar is going for here. The song is about an individual contemplating life without the person they love, admitting that "life would still go on" but "the world could show nothing to me." That's pretty heavy stuff for a family film advertisement, suggesting Toy Story 4 will be exploring some poignant themes about loss and moving on. All his life, Woody's known he needs to be there to take care of his kid, but his journey with Bo could open up other possibilities. And God only knows what Woody would do if he didn't have one, single person to watch over. Dialogue in the trailer hints he's going to have a very hard time making sense of it all. Things aren't as easy as they seemed.
Of course, "God Only Knows" can also be applied to Bonnie's side of the story. Much like Andy before her, Bonnie loves her toys and they're the world to her. Forky in particular holds a special place in her heart, seeing that he was an art project she made herself in school. One sequence in the trailer shows Bonnie frantically searching for her lost toys and then being consoled by her parents, so she'll be going through some trying times in Toy Story 4 as well. All in all, the preview laid the foundation for a compelling and fascinating story, and hopefully it lives up to its on-paper potential.
- Toy Story 4 (2019) release date: Jun 21, 2019