Inside Out  is the latest film from Pixar and their first original feature since 2012’s disappointing Brave. Here we follow a young girl named Riley and the personified versions of her emotions, specifically Joy (Amy Poehler), Sadness (Phyllis Smith), Fear (Bill Hader), Disgust (Mindy Kaling), and Anger (Lewis Black). When Riley and her family move to San Francisco, her emotions must help her deal with the emotional toll this change has on her life.
The feels, man. A film about emotions better have some emotional resonance and Inside Out does not disappoint here. Not only are the characters charming and unique, the events in Riley’s life are very relatable. The kids in the audience may be a little uninterested in the deeper stuff, but adults and especially parents may have emotional breakdowns and leave the theater sobbed several times.
Emotional intelligence. What Pixar did with this film is kind of difficult to comprehend. They may have just changed the way we think about the way we think. It could be hard not to think of these characters running around your head when you are feeling certain ways. This is a film that could have a strong place in the zeitgeist for years to come for both kids and adults.
That good ole Pixar wit. In addition to bringing the tears, Inside Out brings the giggles, too. Containing everything from jokes seemingly making fun of Justin Bieber to references to Roman Polanski films, there is something in there for everyone. While the film never comes close to the wit and subtle innuendos of Pixar’s early work, it still handles the humor very well. The story gets a little repetitive in the middle and slows down with both the emotion and the humor, but it quickly picks back up again for a fantastic finale.
While it’s not Pixar’s magnum opus, it will certainly help bring them out of their recent slump.