Welcome back Pixar!
After three less than stellar films with “Cars 2”, “Brave”, and “Monster’s University” it looked as though Pixar was on the decline and may have already peaked.
Well, they haven’t. “Inside Out” is a new classic for the studio. A brightly colored, lively film that touches on all of our emotions.
“Inside Out” throws us literally into the mind of a young 11 year old girl named Riley. There we meet Joy (Amy Poehler), Sadness (Phyllis Smith), Fear (Bill Hader), Anger (Lewis Black), and Disgust (Mindy Kaling) and together, they are responsible for everything and anything that Riley feels and thinks about.
Everything is going great with Riley. She’s a happy, hockey playing, fun-loving girl who has a great family and great friends. This is until she and her family move from Minnesota to San Francisco, where Riley’s emotions are conflicted about how to adjust to her new life in a new city with new people.
This cast is truly incredible. Poehler, Smith, Hader, Black, and Kaling are all magnificent. It is truly one of the best ensembles of the year, animated or not. This also might be the best ensemble ever for a Pixar film. We meet a number of other characters, like Riley’s former imaginary friend Bing Bong (Richard Kind), who are also great. But it is the main five that really shine here.
This is another technical marvel from Pixar. The world of Riley’s mind is a meticulously constructed, gorgeous maze. The sound design and editing also stood out, adding more emotion and intensity to the story. The film is aesthetically perfect in every way.
Where Pixar came up with the idea for this movie solidifies their genius. This is the most original and inventive idea they have had in years. “Inside Out” takes themes that they have tackled before, like friendship, growing up, and the loss of loved ones, to new levels. The script has numerous laugh out loud moments, especially from Lewis Black as Anger. But with every laugh, there is a heart string pulled and “Inside Out” has no shortage of those. We feel for Riley and everything she is going through, but we also feel for the emotions and characters in her mind.
“Inside Out” is vintage Pixar. It is a funny, sad, moving movie that is perfect for adults and kids. It touches the human emotion as well as any Pixar film has before. In a summer filled with big sequels, explosions, and dinosaurs, it is a huge breath of fresh air to get a film that is so ambitious, original, and brilliant. “Inside Out” is one of Pixar’s finest films and one of the best films of the year.
MY RATING – 4/4
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Image courtesy of YouTube via MovieClips Trailers.