- RatedPG /GenreAdventure, Animation
Joy, sadness, fear, disgust, anger.
So regular and common are these emotions that we would hardly consider them a source of entertainment.
Yet Pixar’s 15th animated feature manages to convert them into the stars of an adventure that radiates with amusement and inspiration.
What ‘Inside Out’ does so well is that it captures the most human of emotions and experiences, and repackages them into something that is both wonderfully new and endearingly familiar.
The result is a breath of fresh air that invigorates and uplifts, and also surprises with its intelligence.
Needless to say, ‘Inside Out’ is a testament to the creative prowess huddled up at the magical storytelling factory that is Pixar.
AN INNOVATIVE EXPERIENCE
In a world where emotions are personified as little humanoids running a control centre in the human brain, 11-year-old Riley Andersen’s (Kaitlyn Dias) head is the home of Joy (Amy Poehler), Sadness (Phyllis Smith), Fear (Bill Hader), Disgust (Mindy Kaling) and Anger (Lewis Black).
The five colourful characters operate as a somewhat functional team under Joy’s leadership, but they find themselves in a chaotic situation as Riley struggles with her family’s move to San Francisco. As the displaced Joy and Sadness navigate through Riley’s mind to return to “headquarters”, they learn how emotions truly work.
If ‘Inside Out’ is lacking in any aspect, it is in its straightforward and somewhat cliched plot. The movie loses some of its spark once Joy and Sadness embark on their predictable escapade, forfeiting some of the promise that opens the film.
But ‘Inside Out’ more than compensates for this shortcoming by serving up a different source of originality; the setting of the film.
At the hands of its masterful creators, ‘Inside Out’ translates universal emotions and thoughts into an incredibly innovative world, and the results are both fascinating and hilarious.
‘Inside Out’ also radiates a sense of liveliness and emotionally stimulates for its entirety. Concepts that consistently strike a chord with viewers are elevated with ingenuity and presentation. Whether it be humour or sentimentality, the audience is very conscious of the fact that they are touched or having fun while watching the movie.
Because ‘Inside Out’ manages to inject this self-awareness into its viewers with its superb execution, the movie is transformed from a colourful story into a poignant emotional experience.
INCREDIBLY SMART AND SINCERE
For all its comedy and entertainment, ‘Inside Out’ truly impresses with its sheer intelligence.
The film proudly demonstrates a sincere awareness of the human condition, particularly its emotional and psychological responses. And this is highly evident in their creative onscreen representations.
The movie enhances its smart messages and sentimental undertones with beautiful animation, effective storytelling and noteworthy voice performances by the very talented cast. As a final product, viewers are able to revisit their own emotional journeys from a perspective that is both deeply insightful and moving.
Because ‘Inside Out’ heavily revolves around emotional experience, it is also the rare Pixar movie that is more enjoyable for an older audience.
Indeed, children will delight at the adorable characters and colourful world. But more mature and self-aware viewers will be the ones who nod appreciatively at the screen and agree that the movie has captured their life experiences.
As with the greatest Pixar releases, the thoughtful script requires a certain level of maturity to be truly appreciated.
‘Inside Out’ might not be the best film in Pixar’s critically acclaimed collection, and it is certainly not perfect. But when a movie is so thoroughly enjoyable to watch and surprisingly affective, it cannot be called anything less than what it really is, which is, that it is one of the smartest and most relatable films in recent times.
'Inside Out' opens 27 Aug 2015