Soul is the latest feature from Pixar Animation Studios. Originally planned to have a wide theatrical release, it is readily available for everyone to watch on Disney+. Soul focuses on a middle-school band teacher named Joe Gardner (Jamie Foxx), who loves jazz music more than anything else in the world. One day, his soul gets separated from his human body and lands in a place called The Great Beyond. He now has to find a way to get back to Earth while learning the true meaning of life as the movie goes on. Once again, this is another fantastic title by Pete Docter, who is best recognized for his other critically acclaimed films such asMonsters, Inc.,Up, and Inside Out.
What is it that makes you...YOU?First of all, Foxx adds a lot of depth to his character. You connect with Joe — the reason why he's so passionate about jazz is a compelling one. Joe is a very likable person with a relatable struggle. Soul also makes sure to embrace African-American culture and community — the filmmakers portray the people authentically living in New York. You can see that they have gone about their research mindfully to represent ethnic diversity on-screen.
Another triumph for Pixar. I think Pete Docter is one of the main reasons Pixar continues to shine in the movie industry. He’s a visionary filmmaker who comes up with brilliant storytelling and interesting characters. In Soul, the animation is top-notch and aesthetically stunning. Some scenes are visually spectacular, and the world is incredibly unique. The narrative touches on some mature themes such as purpose and passion, which are crucial aspects that people will naturally gravitate towards. Not necessarily a flaw, but Soul could be one of those Pixar titles that'll appeal more to adults than kids. Young moviegoers can still enjoy it, but older audiences will probably connect to the deeper message in the film. Warning: after you watch the movie, it will likely make you ask yourself some important questions about life fulfillment.
Without a doubt, Soul is one of the most ambitious and profound features by Pixar Studios. Pete Docter should be commended for always taking risks as both a filmmaker and storyteller. Animation has always been a terrific genre of cinema, and it continues to thrive to this day. Easily one of the best films of 2020.