1 The Mickey Mindset: Retro Review: Buzz Lightyear of Star Command

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Retro Review: Buzz Lightyear of Star Command

Mitchell Stein- Out of all the Disney direct-to-video films throughout the decades, I would have to say Buzz Lightyear of Star Command: The Adventure Begins is one of my favorites.

The film begins with Andy’s Toys, Woody, Buzz, Rex, Hamm, Jessie etc. waiting for their VHS copy of Buzz Lightyear of Star Command to arrive, being delivered by the green army men, as usual. Rex is too excited and nearly faints as the group continues to mess with him, such as the VHS is broken and the box not opening. Finally, once they pop it in and the film gets rolling is where our adventure begins.
The film transforms into the CGI 3D animation in Andy’s Room to the traditional hand-drawn 2D animation seen on screen. The entire screen becomes filled with the 2D animation and we are filled in with our first Star Command mission: Locate the three missing “Little Green Men” (the aliens from the Toy Story franchise). 

After a sad series of events, Buzz decides to never work with a partner again. Star Command disagrees and pulls out the Star Command regulations which clearly state that every Space Ranger must be teamed up with an assistant. He is first teamed up with Princess Mira Nova, a new cadet who seems to be just as self-centered as Buzz. She’s come a long way to her position and would do anything to get the respect she deserves, even if it means breaking the rules. 

Next, he’s teamed up with XR, a robot built by the Little Green Men to assist and learn from Buzz. After being destroyed, XR is rebuilt as a much smarter, quirkier robot, who easily steals the show and provides most of the film’s comedy relief. As well as that, there’s Booster, a big red creature (species unknown) who works on the Star Command janitorial staff and has always wanted to be a Space Ranger like Buzz.

Evil Emperor Zurg (voiced by Wayne Knight, strangely enough) is a perfect villain. His self-centered evil plans are so diabolical and he’s willing to crush anyone in his way and provide some hilarious moments while arguing with his moronic staff. He places his trust in “Agent Z” to exterminate Buzz Lightyear, as Zurg moves onto the Little Green Men planet to steal the UniMind, which is ultimately a way for the L.G.M to communicate with one another through mind powers. Zurg plans to use this for his own benefit and to control everyone’s minds, in true super-villain fashion. 

Actor Tim Allen, well known for his work as the voice of Buzz in all three Toy Story films returns to voice Buzz in this exciting story, along with Nicole Sullivan (Meet the Robinsons) as Mira Nova, Larry Miller as XR, Adam Corolla as Commander Nebula and Stephen Furst as Booster. The voice actors are great and they all give life to every character, and really add to each scene. It’s also good to see Allen back as Buzz, as things are always better with the original voice actors, even though they usually cost a lot of money.

Overall, I love this film, especially as a fan of the Toy Story franchise, and it puzzles me why Disney hasn’t re-released this movie on DVD and Blu-Ray. The Toy Story franchise has proven to be a big money-maker for Disney and Pixar, and I can only see money signs coming out of this re-release. If they’re going to release it, I hope they do it soon. I would love to own this on high-definition. It would definitely look a lot better than my current copy on VHS.  


  1. There is a DVD release of it but it came out the same day as the VHS.I think it would look good on Blu-Ray. Wondering why they never re-released this when "Toy Story 3" came out

    1. I wasn't aware of that DVD release! Thanks for the update. Regardless, I think it should get another re-release, most preferably on Blu-Ray. The Toy Story franchise is so popular and so valuable, I can't understand why they haven't released this yet.

    2. As a big fan of the show I've always wanted to see the entire series on DVD. I guess the next time a chance for that comes up will be next year, when Toy Story turns 20.

    3. I'm not so sure. I have the feeling that Pixar was not happy with the series as they were not really involved. Remember, this was done when the studio was still a seperate company and just had a contract with Disney.

  2. This movie is my favorite! I'm so happy you reviewed this!!!! :D