Sandy Kenyon reviews 'Cars 3'

NEW YORK (WABC) -- It's been more than a decade since Disney and Pixar released "Cars" and introduced the world to Lightning McQueen and Mater.

Now, the stars are back for a third installment and ready for their next adventure.

The first two films grossed a billion dollars around the world, and sales of "Cars" merchandise amounts to an astonishing $10 billion. It's no wonder "Cars 3" will likely displace "Wonder Woman" from the top spot on the list of box officer winners.

The third movie finds Lightning McQueen challenged by younger and more sophisticated drivers, led by a Jackson Storm, voiced by Armie Hammer. Kerry Washington plays the aptly named Natalie Certain.

Front and center again, though, is Owen Wilson playing the hero car. But racing has gone high-tech, meaning Lightning needs his friends back in Radiator Springs more than ever.

Mater, the part played by Larry the Cable Guy, is not as big as in the sequel, but he's as funny as ever. It's also so good to hear the late Paul Newman as Doc Hudson again, thanks to outtakes from the first "Cars" movie that have been re-used.

What's coming is clear enough.

"This movie is about mentorship," Larry the Cable Guy said. "And so Owen is mentoring someone in this movie, and he was mentored by Paul Newman's character in the first one."

The earnest dialogue can make younger kids restless, but even with the slow place, it's tough not to recommend the film.

"Cars 3" is from Pixar, distributed by Walt Disney Studios, both owned by the same parent company as WABC-TV.
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