Movie Review (Inside Out)


RELEASE DATE: June 19, 2015

STUDIO: Disney•Pixar

DIRECTORS: Pete Docter, Ronaldo Del Carmen

MPAA RATING: PG (for mild thematic elements and some action)

SCREENWRITERS: Pete Docter, Meg LeFauve, Josh Cooley

STARRING: Amy Poehler, Bill Hader, Lewis Black, Mindy Kaling, Phyllis Smith, Diane Lane, Kyle MacLachlan

GENRE: Animation


Disney and Pixar are two names synonymous with great (and occasionally not so great) animated films. From hits like Toy Story to flops like Cars 2, the two companies have been a force in the animation business for decades. With the newest in their line of collaborations releasing today, Inside Out is poised to be one for the win column.

The inner workings of the mind are a mystery. They always have been, until now. Welcome to the world inside the head of 11 year old Riley whom lives in Minnesota with her family, her friends and the love of her life, hockey. All of this is thrown out of whack when her father moves the family to San Francisco. Now, the literal little voices in her head are going crazy trying to guide her toward the right amount of fear, anger, joy, sadness, or disgust when it comes to the changes she’s going through.

The voice actors are very good in their roles as little Riley’s emotional compasses. Anger, played by Lewis Black is perfectly cast. The man has based his entire career on being the angriest guy on the planet. Bill Hader is Fear. He’s frantic and cowardly but he serves the purpose of keeping Riley safe and he’s extremely good at his job. Hader handles the character in a manic and overbearingly concerned way that it’s the most comical thing going in the film. Mindy Kaling is Disgust and she’s probably the weakest of the emotional characters. Sadness is probably the most complex of the characters as she is always left out of things by the other emotions that believe there is no need for her there. She’s trying to find her purpose among the others while being led astray by the ringleader Joy. Joy is played by Amy Poehler and is most likely to become the character with the most merchandise from this film. Joy as the first of Riley’s emotions is especially concerned by her benefactors new situation. Riley just isn’t as joyful as she once was and that is tearing her happy little world apart. A personal favorite of mine is Bing Bong. Riley’s almost forgotten imaginary friend is both a comedic and tragic figure in the movie. Richard Kind is his voice and a treat in the film.

Directors Pete Docter and Ronaldo Del Carmen have made a mindscape that is vibrant and alive. It is all encompassing and you can’t help but think maybe this is what goes on in your own head. The movie is a blast to watch and forget about the world for an hour and a half. It’s is, in my honest opinion, one of the team of Disney and Pixar’s finest outings ever.