Inside Out Review

It has been a while since Pixar has made a film that I truly loved. Ever since Toy Story 3, I feel as though the company went a little downhill. They reached rock bottom with Cars 2, and both Brave and Monster’s University (while good) were not among their best films. However, I am so happy to report that Inside Out is among their finest accomplishments. Not only was it frequently funny, but it had some genuine emotion, revolving around a fantastic premise.
I’m Joy, This Is Sadness, That’s Anger, This Is Disgust.
For the sake of the film, I am going to do my best to avoid any spoilers, but you should know that this is a conceptually complex film. As I left the theater I realized this film will go over most children’s heads. It deals with themes that adults will be more familiar with, but the beauty of the film is that it will also appeal to children. While they may not understand it completely, there is enough in the film that will entertain them. Plus as they get older, they will surely reflect on the film and understand it a bit better. The plot of this film is serviceable, but the main draw for me was the premise. What I truly love about the plot though is that it is crafted in a way that allows the audience to learn about how these emotions work to operate the main character (Riley). Speaking of the emotions, the main emotions of the film are: Joy, Sadness, Anger, Fear, and Disgust. All of them are brilliantly brought to life by top notch voice acting. For me, the standout was Anger. Lewis Black’s voice just perfectly fit Anger’s personality. The emotions interact in very interesting and unusual ways, but when you think about it, it makes perfect sense. I will not spoil exactly how they interact, but in some respects I found it very heartbreaking. There is another major character in the film that has not been revealed in the trailers or promotional material. This is by far my favorite character. He was responsible for most of the laughs in the film. Now, a film about emotions needs to evoke emotions, and this film certainly does that. I often found myself laughing and just feeling happy, but on one specific occasion the film gutted me in the heart. Yes, this film made me cry. I haven’t felt this sad during a film since a certain someone’s death in Amazing Spider-Man 2. The difference here though is that this was much more impactful because I could relate to it. Again, no spoilers here, but you will know what I am talking about when you see the film.
C’mon! Think Positive!
Some other strong points of the film are the beginning and ending. I absolutely love the way this film starts. It just kind of thrusts you into the plot in a very creative way. However, the ending is arguably even more satisfying. It ends with a hint of finality, but even leaves room for a sequel if Pixar wants to produce one. For once, I would not mind a sequel. The film primarily takes place while Riley is 11 years old. Imagine the possibilities with an aging girl. I believe there could be a sequel that really works. On the other hand, if there is not a sequel, the film does a good job wrapping up the film. Along with a great premise, engaging plot, and top notch voice acting, the animation and the music are both breathtaking. The animation is simply gorgeous to look at, and also extremely creative. The music is, in a word: beautiful. When used properly, music can enhance the emotions a film is trying to convey, and that is precisely what the music in this film does. Michael Giacchino is the one who scored the film, and he has been one of my favorite composers for quite some time. All I can say is keep up the fantastic work. At this point, it may seem like I am reviewing a perfect film, but it does have several flaws. The biggest (in my opinion) is that there is a bit of inconsistency with the emotions in people’s heads. The film not only depicts emotions in our protagonist, but in several supporting characters as well. It is not a big part of the film, but I would have liked to know why certain aspects of those emotions are different from the main one’s in Riley’s head. Other than that, I really do not have any other major complaints. I would also like to mention that there is a short that appear before the actual film. It is not one of Pixar’s best, but it is still pretty adorable.
Closing Remarks
There is not much left to say, other than go and see this film. I do not care how old you are, because this film can be enjoyed by people of all ages. This is a film that does not take the easy route. It takes a complicated premise, and conveys it in a way that makes perfect sense. I have a feeling Jurassic World may win the box office once more this weekend, but I hope Inside Out comes out on top. That would give me nothing but Joy.


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