There have been a lot of stories that explore the inner workings of the human body, be it physical, emotional, or something else. Inside Out is an example, and a great one at that. Now I haven’t followed a lot of the recent Disney/Pixar movies. In fact, the last one I fully watched was either Up or Toy Story 3. The others that came after those I didn’t really see or didn’t care to see. Some people have said Pixar has taken a step down in quality in recent years, I don’t know. But this movie is definitely an indication that they still got it and bring out some feels. Trust me, there are some feels here (yes I know Honest Trailers nicknamed this movie The Feels).
Now yes, the movie’s been out for months, and it has been a while since I saw it in theaters, but I’m trying to get through my 2015 reviews here, ok?
Basically, what this movie is about is a girl and her family move from Minnesota to San Francisco, California, and the personified emotions that are inside her that help her guide through life and its trials and tribulations, which is essential for her since moving is a rough stage in life. This movie did have some consultation work from psychologists, and it certainly shows throughout the movie. I’m no psychology expert here, but it does seem like the movie has an idea what it’s doing with the subject matter.
While there are human characters in this movie, that being Riley, her parents and their inner emotions, and any other random human characters and their inner emotions, they aren’t exactly the ones spotlighted here. Rather, it’s the emotions inside of Riley, which are Joy, Sadness, Fear, Disgust, and Anger (put any of those in any random order, and you got the five stages of relationships there lol). And let’s not forget [sniffle] Bing Bong. Godammit, don’t you EVER forget Bing Bong, or ANY of your imaginary friends from childhood [sob].Anyway, with Riley moving, this causes, well, emotional conflict within her. I mean, literally. Joy, being the obviously happy one since her name is Joy and personifies happiness, tries to keep everyone in line, especially Sadness. But this causes the two of them to get stranded in Riley’s mind that isn’t their headquarters of which they have to get back to in order to prevent Riley from getting emotionally worse with Fear, Disgust, and Anger in charge.
The voice acting and animation compliment each other very well. I couldn’t imagine anyone else voicing Joy, Sadness, Fear, Disgust, and Anger who was really hilarious, not to mention Bing Bong (must resist feeling sad, I know Disney has had movie characters died before but dammit) other than Amy Poehler, Phyllis Smith, Bill Hader, Mindy Kaling, Lewis Black, and Richard Kind, and even the voices of the human characters, Diane Lane, Kyle MacLachlan, and the voice of Riley herself, Kaitlyn Dias, after watching this. In fact, I can’t imagine anyone else voicing any of the other characters at all other than the ones that played them. With good directing and writing, beautiful animation, and perfect comedic timing, there is no one else that could bring these characters, and this story, to life.
What I like most about this movie is not just how it tries to show the inner workings of the human mind, but the overall positivity and energy that this movie gives. Sure, there are sad moments, but that’s what happens when it’s time to grow up, or at least let go of childhood and move on to the next stage. And maybe this movie will be used in psychology classes regardless of whether it’s high school or college, who knows. All I do know is that this was a fun movie, a great resurgence for Pixar, and I can’t wait for what’s next from them, but hopefully no more Cars movies. PLEASE.