Before we begin, a couple disclaimers:
1. This blog contains spoilers. If you have not seen the movie and hate spoilers, do not continue reading. If you are reading, we assume you know the backstory.
2. Our blogs are often wrote by either Brother OR Sista Dillo. This blog has both of our reviews. HOWever, we have not read each other’s reviews before posting. Some views may go against each other or we may repeat the same feelings.
Sista Dillo’s Review
I really enjoyed this movie and look forward to seeing it again. Wow! What a great review, right? Ha! I kid, let me continue.
I think Pixar nailed the “tugging of the heart strings” as they do in all of their movies. I’m not sure where I would rank this in my Pixar favs just yet. I think another viewing has to happen before that. I do know it’s definitely above Cars 2, Monsters University and Ratatouille for me.
Joy, Sadness, Fear, Anger and Disgust.
All the emotions grew up with Riley. Joy is her leader.
An example of the emotions growing with Riley: Disgust. Disgust starts off in Riley’s mind to keep her away from gross things that most kids don’t enjoy-like Broccoli. However, as Riley matured, so did Disgust. Instead of keeping Riley from things that would gross her out, she now provided Riley with her sarcastic side. The ‘snippy’ side that most 11 year olds develop (let alone an 11 year old that has moved from her home and friends), that’s Disgust.
I think it was interesting how PIxar matured the emotions, because it’s what happens to all of us. We all deal with emotions in different ways at different stages in our life.
There was a small peak into Mom and Dad’s minds as well – each having a different leader.
In the end, we see how a balance of all emotions are needed. Of course Joy wanted Riley to be happy all the time. But sometimes you have to go through sadness or any other emotion in order to return to Joy.
A good example of a spoiler. While Joy and Sadness are lost in the depths of Riley’s mind, Anger decides Riley is going to run away and return home to Minnesota in order to find her happiness again.
As she gets closer to running away, the Islands of her personality start to disappear, the console that her emotions control turns dark.
Decisions you make can wipe you of your emotions, who you are as a person and your memories. One decision can change everything.
Luckily, Riley returns home, lets her parents know how sad she is from missing home and is able to find Joy in her parents’ arms.
The World of Riley’s Mind and Imaginary Friends
I thought all of this was cool.
*Memories being stored into long term memories.
*Some memories that fade forever.
*What is working to store memories or create new ones vs what doesn’t while Riley sleeps.
*Your dreams being a complete movie studio where random characters are able to act out scenes in your dreams with a filter.
*A new place for your Imaginary Friend.
<sigh> Bing Bong. Bing Bong is Riley’s imaginary friend and what got me crying in this movie. Before he fades forever, he helps Joy get back on her journey to Headquarters. For those who have or have not had imaginary friends, the basic idea of them is the same. They are created from a child’s mind of their ideals. Someone a child can escape with into a land of imagination. And in the end, even when that Imaginary Friend is just a memory, they will never be selfish and always have your best interest at heart.
To Sum Up
Much like how Toy Story was able to tug at heart strings by exploring the world of a child, I feel this movie did the same. It tapped into childhood memories, emotions, and imaginations and how important it is to keep some forever.
I think the credits of the movie summed it up best:
“Dedicated to our children. Don’t grow up. Ever.”
P.S. I highly recommend reading the Trivia on IMDB regarding this movie. A lot fun facts and easter eggs there!
Brother Dillo’s Review
(The following review is marred by the irresponsible parent who refused to take their screaming toddler out of the theater for the final 25 minutes of this film)
*Please note: Sista Dillo was able to tune out screaming toddler and zone in on the movie.
To me, the execution of a concept is key. There are plenty of great ideas out there. Even in the things you hate, you may sometimes say “I know what they were going for, but…”
I found myself in this place with ‘Inside Out’, which is unfortunate because it’s still a superior movie to the abundance of mediocrity we see today. In the line of Pixar movies, I find it aligned with ‘Monsters Inc.’ & ‘Up’ in ranking – not quite breaking through what I consider the upper echelon: ‘WALL-E’, ‘Finding Nemo’, & anything with the words ‘Toy’ & ‘Story’ in the title.
The concept, as to be expected with every Pixar film, is brilliant. We all have Joy, Disgust, Fear, Anger, and Sadness within us, and to see that translated into the first crisis of a displaced eleven year old is fascinating. At first, I found such scenes as speaking in front of your class on your first day cliche (mainly because I’ve never experienced a new kid in any class doing that – ever), but it’s the best way to show off the Emotions/Characters. And while Joy & Sadness take the pilot & co-pilot seats in driving this story, I found myself wanting to see much more from Fear – and that’s because I see Fear as the driving force in so many people’s lives… ‘Inside Out’ wasn’t about all these people I know, this is about eleven year old Riley.
The highlights for me included the voice work. Amy Poehler & Bill Hader shine. That shouldn’t be a surprise – and you also shouldn’t be surprised if there’s Oscar buzz for Richard Kind’s work. If you have not yet seen the film, I will not post a spoiler.
‘Lava’ was an appropriate opening short. Whenever Pixar explores the basic needs of humans/animals/inanimate objects, the studio is at its best. At first I was hesitant at another Pixar hook presented in ‘Inside Out’, ‘the journey back home’, but this was the best way to explore the labyrinth of archives, the various islands of one’s most important qualities, the explorations of both dreams and imagination. As one who prides himself on memory recall, this examination, and sometimes textual regurgitation, was awesome.
Current (but not Official) Personal Pixar rankings:
1) Toy Story, 2) WALL-E, 3) Finding Nemo, 4) Toy Story 3, 5) Toy Story 2, 6) Monsters Inc., 7) Up, 8) Inside Out, 9) Ratatouille, 10) The Incredibles, 11) Monsters University, 12) Cars, 13) A Bug’s Life, 14) Cars 2
Brother and Sista Dillo