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'Cars 2' Has Horsepower to Be Big at Box Office

This week's dinner and a movie features the latest Dixie/Pixar installment.

This week's movie: Cars 2

Those crazy cars with human-like features go 3-D and go global. Ladies and Gentlemen, start your engines, Cars 2 is coming to a theater near you!

Your favorite cast of car parts has left Radiator Springs for an international race that takes them all over the world in the Disney/Pixar animation Cars 2. Owen Wilson is the voice of "Lightning McQueen" and Larry the Cable Guy is the inspiration behind "Mater." The car and truck duo span several countries in a quest to win the multi-car race challenge. Lightning faces off against a world class Italian car, voiced by John Turturro, and Michael Cane is the voice of the British James Bond-like car "Fin McMissle."

The movie starts with a bang with the spy espionage set up but then slowly sputters to a finish line that is all too predictable. The animation backdrops in the different countries are fantastic with the storyline being the only thing out of focus in my opinion. Most animations these days come with some sort of emotional element and little nuggets of wisdom. Cars 2 does not. Sure the eco-friendly alternative fuel angle is a plus, but it is not the big picture. Cars 2 is simply a loud, colorful, lively diversion that is fun to look at, but really nothing more.

This is not a bad film, its just ok, much like the first film in 2006. What made "Lightning McQueen" and "Mater" so endearing in the first film continues on to an extent in this one. Now that they are out of Radiator Springs, more of the story is about their environment and less about them. The set scenes, the 3D, and the colors are truly a feast for the eyes, but the lack of character content may just leave you hungry.

The flick-o-meter has tallied up the score and gives Cars 2 a decent three out of five. The film zips by, it will at times make you laugh and there are a few small tugs at the heart strings. I will steer clear of calling this car movie a lemon but, in all honesty, it is a "Mater" movie. The simple-minded backwoods, country boy tow truck is the best thing about the film. Who knows, "Mater" may have his own film someday. So now you know before you go. Please check out my exclusive Patch video review on this page, comment on it, and tell a friend!

Dinner: Sonic

What better place to grab a bite before or after "Cars 2" then the very car-friendly ? The restaurant stays open late serving up hamburgers, coneys and other sandwiches. You can also satisfy your sweet tooth with variety of malts, sundaes, milkshakes, blasts and slushies.

Showtimes: Great Escape 14

Ready to see "Cars 2"? Head to , 2160 Hamilton Creek Parkway. For more theater information and links to showtimes and pricing, or call 678-482-0624.

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