Owing from Pixar Studios’ absence last year – and it’s recent over-reliance on prequels and sequels – their latest project titled Inside Out happens to be the most hilarious and emotionally-driven movie ever shown. Not since their last films, Up and Toy Story 3, has there ever been a Pixar movie that will make you laugh and even move you by the time it has reached its climactic end.
The story centers on an eleven year-old girl named Riley and the emotions – Joy, Anger, Fear, Disgust, and Sadness – that run around inside her head. When Riley’s family decides to move from Minnesota to San Fransisco, with a new home, new school, and new friends, Riley’s emotions conflict with each other on how Riley should feel about the situation. That’s all you need to know going into this film, because knowing as little as possible about the film made my experience all the more memorable.
Inside Out builds a world and a system that is full of all the fantastical elements you would expect from an animated experience like this, but it is executed so well and the way thoughts and feelings are represented hits so close to home that after the movie you’ll find yourself imagining what your little feeling characters are like in your own head. You’ll find yourself thinking about what your own core memories are and what islands of personality they power. Inside Out represents growing up in a way we’ve never seen done before. It is a perfect way of making sense of all the different emotions we experience as we grow up and learn more about the world. I promise that you’ve never seen a coming of age story like this. I honestly don’t know if I’ve ever experienced an animated film of this caliber that, while so fantastical and so extravagant, also feels so real.
The human brain is nothing more than billions and trillions of electrical synapses, but sometimes those synapses can create something beautiful, like this incredible personification of the mind that is adorable, funny, sentimental, and powerfully touching. I’m so thankful for the synapses working in the minds of those geniuses over at Pixar, because it has given us one of the most heartwarming films in a long, long time that is so universally relate-able I don’t know how anybody couldn’t enjoy it.
As with all other Pixar films, the animation is smooth and the production design is beautiful. This film meets all the technical expectations that all other Pixar films meet, and that shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone. All the acting in this film is fantastic; Amy Poehler (Joy), Bill Hader (Fear), Lewis Black (Anger), Mindy Kaling (Disgust), and Phyllis Smith (Sadness) all do exceptional work. I especially like Lewis Black as Anger, just perfect casting choice.
In addition to having a wonderful story about moving on and accepting change, Inside Out contains some of the coolest Easter eggs and references any Pixar film has to offer. Who thought we would get a Chinatown reference in a kids movie? Or hidden Hitchcock posters in ‘Dream Studios’, which is also equally as funny as it is a nod to how impeccably true it is of Hollywood. Now veteran Pixar composer Michael Giacchino, gave us yet another beautifully emotional score. Inside Out is one of the most fun summer films and quite possibly best of the year so far. It’s near a lock to win best animated feature and a likely candidate for best picture come February. I was beyond impressed by Inside Out.
Inside Out gets a 9.0/10.