Inside Out, a true rollercoaster of emotions.

Hello on a gloriously rainy Sunday! As soon as the school holidays officially start, it stops being 33 degrees and starts being 13. I have many MANY summery outfits I want to be wearing, but alas I would look ridiculous if I wore them. Instead, I’m wearing rollnecks, jeans and jackets in a last-ditch attempt to stay stylish and warm. But, let’s stay positive, it’s the school holidays (although I’m a university student, I’ve been on my summer break for a month).

So, what to do in the school holidays? With reports estimating that parents spend on average £600 per child in order to keep their children entertained, it’s not economically viable to go out every day and do things. However, my little sister Phoebe and I went to see a smash-hit Pixar film on its British release date at our local cinema and it was WONDERFUL. Inside Out is one of those rare films that truly appeals to all ages. Before I discuss some of the film, if you’ve not seen it I urge you to. It tackles the joining of emotions in order to truly comprehend something. Plus, I nearly cried in the cinema which is tragic, but then I cried (albeit with laughter) at Pitch Perfect 2 in Vue so what’s more embarrassing really?

Pixar address Inside Out as this (guess which word I changed to the British spelling, because Americans change spelling variants that really don’t need changing, leave a comment if you know which word):

“Growing up can be a bumpy road, and it’s no exception for Riley, who is uprooted from her Midwest life when her father starts a new job in San Francisco. Like all of us, Riley is guided by her emotions – Joy, Fear, Anger, Disgust and Sadness. The emotions live in Headquarters, the control centre inside Riley’s mind, where they help advise her through everyday life. As Riley and her emotions struggle to adjust to a new life in San Francisco, turmoil ensues in Headquarters. Although Joy, Riley’s main and most important emotion, tries to keep things positive, the emotions conflict on how best to navigate a new city, house and school”.

At the start of the film, we are introduced to the five emotions that lay inside Riley’s head, and these are pivotal to fully understanding the story. This is the first film that I have ever seen that does not focus on the people, but the thought processes behind the people. Immediately, I knew this was going to be a hit with me as it showed the cinema industry doing something different and breaking out against the stereotypical ‘boy-meets-girl’ cliché stories. The five emotions are Joy, Fear, Anger, Disgust and Sadness. When watching the film, I couldn’t help but think how emotions prevail our decisions that we make. It made me realise how we attach emotions towards events that have happened, and whether we want a situation to arise again (such as the glorious feeling of standing on stage and performing alongside your best friends) or to never happen again for as long as I live. However, with Inside Out being mainly targeted as a child’s film, Joy took the lead from the offset, with Riley’s core memories being golden and glorious.

Joy’s first memories including playing hockey and scoring her first goal, and being a monkey with her dad. My first memories include falling off a scooter in Reception and grazing the whole of my lip so I couldn’t speak properly. Boo.

Back to the film, and it’s clear that Riley is living a happy-go-lucky life, yet when she is told by her parents that they’re all moving to San Francisco, Riley cannot believe her ears. Anger, fear and sadness all set in. The characterisation of each emotion came into its own from this point, and I wanted them to stay in Minnesota forever so Riley could stay happy. But, that would make for a dull film and Pixar don’t want that. On the move to San Francisco, we see sadness edging slowly towards a core memory, turning it into a sad memory instead of the jolly times that that memory was associated with. Joy (Amy Poehler) expresses her strong concerns with this, and rallies up the emotions to stay strong and be happy!

I don’t really want to give too much about this film away, because it is just so wonderful. The whole film discusses the importance of allowing sadness into our lives, as it is a vital response. We can’t be truly happy all the time, we have to let negativity into our lives to really make sense of and appreciate the high points. The film shows to children the importance of understanding emotions in order to grow up. It displays our ‘imaginary friends’ (of which I’m sure everyone had one, I know I did) vanishing into the distance as we begin to enter a working, real world instead of a childhood utopia. The film shows an animated way in how we store our memories, and how we have trigger memories such as adverts that are real earworms.

One of my favourite parts of the film was the ‘shortcut’ that Joy and Sadness take on their quest to get back to Riley’s brain or ‘Headquarters’ instead of the fearful sub consciousness, trapping memories into the past forevermore. Whilst with Riley’s imaginary friend, they take a shortcut in order to lead them back to the train. In this scene, they discuss the four features of abstract memories, however Pixar chose to elevate the meaning behind this by taking the characters out of a 3D display and into 2D. I thought this was just remarkable, and unlike anything I had ever seen in a Pixar movie. My jaw dropped, and during the film I whispered ‘that was great’. I say whispered, I could have spoken, there were 8 people in the screening including myself and my sister. On release date. During the school holidays. Madness.

On the whole, the film was truly magnificent, capturing my attention and imagination for its full duration. I would give it five stars and I can’t wait to see a sequel (if one comes out, I’m sure it will, the potential franchise is too good to just have one film with its characters). I see big things for its future storyline. However, before this, there was a short film played called Lava that truly got me weeping. Go and see the film, you’ll see the short story. Here’s the song they play, just to get you in the mood for Lava and what I see will win many awards, Inside Out.


Sophie x


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