Prayer Focus
Click here to watch THE HOPE on-line!

Cars 3 also known as “Cars: Crossroad,” “Carros 3,” “Arabalar 3,” “Auta 3,” “Auti 3,” “Automobili 3,” “Autot 3,” “Bilar 3,” “Biler 3,” “Ratai 3,” “Verdák 3.,” “Αυτοκίνητα 3”

Reviewed by: Alexander Malsan

Better than Average
Moviemaking Quality:

Primary Audience:
Kids Family
Animation Comedy Adventure Kids Family Sequel
1 hr. 49 min.
Year of Release:
USA Release:
June 16, 2017 (3,900+ theaters)
DVD: November 7, 2017
Copyright, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures click photos to ENLARGE Copyright, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Relevant Issues
Copyright, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

FEAR, Anxiety and Worry—What does the Bible say? Answer


dealing with aging, slowing down

push through the negatives and become positive in your outlook

Copyright, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures


encouraging each other

Copyright, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

mentorship / mentoring

Kid Explorers™
Adventures in the rainforest! Learn about the Creator of the universe by exploring His marvelous creation. Fun for the whole family with games, activities, stories, answers to children’s questions, color pages, and more! One of the Web’s first and most popular Christian Web sites for children. Nonprofit, evangelical, nondenominational.
Copyright, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Copyright, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Copyright, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Copyright, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Copyright, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Copyright, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Featuring: Owen WilsonLightning McQueen (voice)
Chris CooperSmokey (voice)
Armie HammerJackson Storm (voice)
Tony ShalhoubLuigi (voice)
Kerry WashingtonNatalie Certain (voice)
Cristela Alonzo … Cruz Ramirez (voice)
Nathan Fillion … Sterling (voice)
Larry the Cable Guy … Mater (voice)
Ray Magliozzi … Dusty (voice)
Bonnie Hunt … Sally (voice)
Lea DeLaria … Miss Fritter (voice)
Bob Costas … Bob Cutlass (voice)
See all »
Director: Brian Fee
Producer: Kevin Reher
Pixar Animation Studios
Walt Disney Pictures
Distributor: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

“From this moment, everything will change.”

“I… am… speed.” These are the words uttered by one of the greatest racing legends, Lightning McQueen, every time he gears up for a race. He’s come a long way since his time as a rookie, but in that time he’s grown as both a racer and as a car, learning that life is not complete unless you have family and friends by your side, such as the friends he’s made in Radiator Springs.

Time also has a way of being cruel in some ways. Lightning McQueen has had a long racing career, sure, but that also means as he’s gotten older. He starts to wonder if his time to retire has come when he races newcomer Jackson Storm. Storm is swifter and, also, to an extent, craftier than Lighting McQueen. “Perhaps…” says Lightning’s new sponsor Sterling, “Perhaps it’s time to start developing your legacy (e.g., merchandising such as Lightning McQueen mudflaps, etc.) and bring your racing career to a close.”

However, Lightning isn’t quite ready to give up. So he makes a deal with Sterling. If Lightning McQueen cannot win against Jackson Storm in the big race in Florida in three days, Lightning will retire; if Lightning wins, however, he gets to decide when to quit.

“Cars 3” is a story about speed, determination, and carries a heart-warming message of believing in yourself and never letting anyone tell that you don’t matter.

Looking back at the first “Cars,” I remember the film having a lot of heart. The message was clear, well-developed, with occasional use of humor to remind even the adult that this was a film geared mainly toward children. Many of Disney/Pixar’s films, in the past, had also focused strongly on developing quality family-friendly films that carry positive, but well developed messages, such as the “Toy Story” franchise, “A Bug’s Life,” and, of course, to this day, one of my favorite films, “Inside Out.” These messages, along with a rich, beautiful use of computer animation, are the reason that Pixar is considered the standard to which other animation studios aspire.

“Cars 3” returns to its roots by providing a strong, well-thought out plot with some excellent performances and a timely message. Some critics have mentioned that “Cars 3” carries a more serious tone that its predecessors. While it is more serious than “Cars 2,” it caries the same tone as the first “Cars” film, and I feel that this only enhanced the movie-going experience for me. Filmmakers often try to sell their movie to children through use of toilet humor or through other cautionary means (yes, “Cars 2” fell into this category, as there is quite a bit of suggestive and sometimes toilet humor). “Cars 3,” however, proves that you don’t need to lower filmmaking standards to create a solid family-friendly film that will still cater to the primary audience (kids), while also reassuring trust in children’s films with parents.

Objectionable Material

Violence: Violence is limited to a couple car crashes (one is a more extensive crash scene involving Lightning McQueen, one is a flashback of a crash involving McQueen’s mentor, the Hudson Hornet, and one is a scene where McQueen crashes into a TV screen while using virtual training).

Language: Pretty much non-existent, with the exception of some insults thrown at McQueen about his age and McQueen saying the phrase, as he’s training at a beach, “Life’s a BEACH” (possible innuendo for a curse word).


One of the central themes of “Cars 3” is encouragement. When McQueen feels like throwing in the towel (or perhaps hanging up his racing stripes), his friends, and even his trainer, encourage him to keep going, to push through, and to not back down just because someone tells you to.

Likewise, as Christians, it’s easy to give up, to accept defeat when we are presented with trials and temptations. In our minds, we sometimes feel that we just don’t have the energy to make it through. But just as McQueen relies on his friends to help, so must we rely on God to get us through. We are reminded that…

“we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us” —Phillipians 4:13)

Isaiah 41:10 also contains a message regarding encouragement and strength…

Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” NKJV

One of the greatest books of the Bible to turn to in times of hardship and doubt is the book of Psalms.

“…I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come? My help comes from the LORD, who made heaven and earth. He will not let your foot be moved; he who keeps you will not slumber. Behold, he who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep. The LORD is your keeper; the LORD is your shade on your right hand…”

“I sought the LORD, and he answered me and delivered me from all my fears” —Psalms 34:4

“The LORD is my strength and my shield; in him my heart trusts, and I am helped; my heart exults, and with my song I give thanks to him.” –Psalm 28:7

“Cars 3” for me, serves as a reminder of what Disney and Pixar are hopefully returning to with their films… creating positive messages that can be shared for generations to come. I think “Cars 3” is most appropriate for viewers age 8 and up, as children younger than that may become bored. “Cars 3” is one of those rare recent family-films I highly recommend.

  • Violence: Mild
  • Profanity/Vulgarity: None
  • Sex/Nudity: Minor

See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.

Viewer CommentsSend your comments
Comments below:
Positive—I loved “Cars 3.” It was much better than “Cars 2” and more like the original. So many positive messages in it. Including mentorship, where Lightning takes on mentoring a young female wannabe racer named Cruz. The movie literally brought tears of happiness to my eyes at a few points. I highly recommend for children of all ages and for families.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Good / Moviemaking quality: 4
Adam D., age 24 (Canada)
Positive—This was a fantastic movie with a really good message about perseverance, acceptance of who you are, the value of mentorship and believing in others. Both girls and boys will enjoy this movie. I took a group of 8 to 11 year olds to see it, together with myself, my husband and my sister, and we all enjoyed the movie. Highly recommended.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Excellent! / Moviemaking quality: 5
Mandy, age 44 (South Africa)
Positive—We just took our 10 and 6 year old to this movie. We own Cars 1 and didn’t care for “Cars 2.” This movie picks up where Cars 1 leaves off. I found this movie even cleaner in terms of side jokes and comments than Cars 1. Sometimes the secular filmmakers still do a nice clean film.

The main theme is that younger slicker newcomers push out the aging “cars”. However, with that as the challenge, there was a lot of honor of the elderly and the legacy of those who have come before. I don’t think young kids would pick up on the placing of a female in direct competition with men (i.e. competing in racing on the same playing field) and for this fictional story it didn’t really seem to matter as it didn’t get on one soap box or the other about “female empowerment”—I am a female, and I don’t like when that is overemphasized.

There was a lot of genuine loyal friendship and support throughout the movie and some humorous parts too. The scenery and graphics are amazing. The places they go and drive are interesting. The roughest part is when they go to a backwoods car derby, but it still wasn’t that bad. We only see one movie or so out in the theater every few years, and this was a good one to pick.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Excellent! / Moviemaking quality: 5
—Marie, age 42 (USA)
Positive—This is a fantastic film for ending the “Cars” storyline! It’s very clean and completely family-friendly, with a resolution that will teach young and old an important lesson about life.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Excellent! / Moviemaking quality: 5
Jason H., age 45 (USA)
Negative—“Cars 3” goes all in for a girl power movie, as Disney demasculinizes another good film series, unfortunately. As a Christian Family, it’s hard to find good entertainment.

The story revolves around “Cruz” a female car trainer that never got her chance to be a race car, and McQueen is fading away as a washed up racer. Cars runs the table on out with the old characters in with new female characters, leaving old character favorites like Tow Matter with small insignificant parts, but chalked full of—New Female Car Racer, New Female Race Statistician Announcer, A New/OLD throw back female pioneer racer, New Female Demolition Queen, Even Bruce Springsteen is replaced with Female singer singing glory days at the Oil Bar, not to mention a new car owner without a back bone.

Disney continues with its push on culture agenda. We have three boys 15, 13 and 9 all gave thumbs down. Even my wife was surprised at the direction the series had taken and replied we won’t be buying that one… Very Disappointing.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 2½
LH, age 43 (USA)

PLEASE share your observations and insights to be posted here.

Movie Critics
…An exceedingly sweet and polished fable that unfolds with a kid-friendly, by-the-book emotional directness. …
Owen Gleiberman, Variety
…far more compelling, relevant, surprising, and visually stunning than either of its predessors… It also has a lot more to offer female viewers, particularly women of color and the Latinx community. …
Mark Hughes, Forbes
…“Cars 3” isn’t going to win any converts from those with an animus toward talking cars. But if you can roll with it, the movie is both breezy fun and a pain-free life lesson delivery vehicle. …
Glenn Kenny, The New York Times
…There are some compelling metaphors here about growing older, about welcoming those not like us and about the joy of mentoring. …fun and clean… [5/5]
Bob Hoose, Plugged In
…Not only does this film explore ideas of aging and mentorship with quiet grace, but it delivers plenty of laughs and gorgeous animation… issues a stern warning about letting pride get in the way of a rewarding life and legacy. …[4/5]
Ryan Duncan, Crosswalk
…fun, entertaining movie for the whole family with strong moral lessons reflecting biblical, redemptive truths. …[4/4]
Ted Baehr, Movieguide
…promotes the idea that girls can (and should! ) do anything they set out to accomplish and that there's something special about the mentor/protégé bond. …
Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media
…while visually dynamic, Lightning McQueen’s newest challenge still feels out of alignment with a languid end result that lacks sufficient forward momentum…
Michael Rechtshaffen, Los Angeles Times