#REVIEW: “INSIDE OUT”
Review by Justin Waldman for Mr. Will Wong
From Director and Writer Pete Docter comes a new unique Film about the emotions living inside of our head as we learn how our emotions affect us and change the way we interact with the world in any given situation. We love Pixar Classics like Up and Monsters, Inc. (which happen to be directed by Docter) but his latest, INSIDE OUT instantly ranks right up there along those greats. Sit back and enjoy this emotionally charged roller coaster ride, which perhaps is the Studio’s answer to Hollywood’s originality problem of late.
The Movie starts-off being told through Riley’s (Kaitlyn Dias) eyes from birth as Joy (Amy Poehler) appears and gives the Audience an introduction to herself and Riley. Although shortly after Joy’s arrival, Sadness (Phyllis Smith) comes in and changes Riley’s emotions. We also meet Fear (Bill Hader), Anger (Lewis Black), and Disgust (Mindy Kaling). These are the core emotions which Riley and we are comprised, corresponding with memories. Every time a memory is created, a memory sphere appears inside Riley’s mind, reflecting the colour of the memory, however core memories are bright vibrant versions of that colour and create core memories, personality traits and ‘islands’ in her head.
The Story takes a sharp turn when Riley is told by her Parents (Diane Lane and Kyle McLachlan) that they have to move to San Francisco. This is not the biggest issue however, as Riley tries to be optimistic about the relocation. Their moving truck gets lost, and therefore leaves Riley in an even more sour mood than she was prior. Upon her first day of school, Fear’s biggest fear becomes a reality when Riley is forced to introduce herself. Joy tries to project her good memories, but unfortunately Sadness touches the memory, thereby making it sad and causing a sad core memory, something Joy is not about to let happen. After a slight altercation with the sad core memory, Sadness and Joy get sucked into long term memory, with all of Riley’s core memories as they have to make it back to headquarters before Riley stops being Riley.
The performances here are what truly make the Movie exceptional. Poehler as Joy executes the role with pure conviction that the Character rises far above any expectation and she commands our attention in undivided fashion. If there was any doubt that she were a true Movie Star, let this be the answer. Phyliss Smith (of The Office fame) plays the affecting Sadness so well that the Audience with ease can sink right into her. Hader is a mastermind by taking all anxieties and exploiting them in his performance with persuasion and hilarity, making Fear one of the most joyous Characters in the Film. Kaling, who unfortunately does not have enough screen time as Disgust, is fabulous as she portrays that invincibility that comes with youth as a 13-year-old girl. Lastly, Black is the best choice for Anger with his trademark angry-comedy and he nails it here.
Everything about Inside Out, is just incredible and we’ll go out on a limb to say it is perhaps the best Pixar Film made ever. It conveys and redefines what made children and adults (old and young) fall in love with the Brand and the Animated Feature phenomenon in the first place.
Lava like other Pixar Features, is a Short Film which accompanies the Feature. It is one of the most heartfelt Shorts the Studio has released in years, and also happens to be a Musical that surely will have you doing a search on iTunes. It is about a Water Volcano that just wants another Volcano to love, singing a beautiful song. His prayers go unanswered for the longest time, until something magical happens.
Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Canada release INSIDE OUT on Friday, June 19, 2015.