2005 mazda3 Oil filter tool

Dealer wants $500 for 30,000 mile serrvice. Even the local lof shop wants 25 extra for synthetic oil, and 6 extra because it's a cannister
filter. Time to start getting my hands dirty.
The owners manual says I need a special tool to change out the oil filter. I haven't crawled under the car yet. Is one really necessary. Also it looks like a PITA to remove the plastic under the engine. Must this come out to get to the rediator drain?
2005 Mazda3 2.3
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