Tonight I saw Inside Out, starring the voices of Amy Poehler and Phyllis Smith.
Pixar has done it again. They've gone and created a visually stunning, colorful, magical film that not only pleases the aural senses, but pulls your heart out and presents it to you on a platter.
Riley (Katilyn Dias) is a happy-go-lucky 11-year-old girl living a cozy life with her parents in Minnesota until one day everything changes: the family moves to San Francisco for her dad's job.
She keeps a brave face and tries not to get too upset when the house they arrive to is nothing like the one they left, and the moving van with all their stuff is delayed. The emotions inside of her are fighting the good fight to keep her safe and content, but Sadness (Smith) keeps grabbing her memories and forcing them to change shape. In an effort to keep Riley from getting dismal, Joy (Poehler) tries to rescue those memories and in the process gets catapulted out of "headquarters," leaving only Fear (Bill Hader), Anger (Lewis Black) and Disgust (Mindy Kaling) to rule her feelings.
Soon Riley is miserable at her new school, mad at her parents and ready to run back to the Midwest where she can again find happiness. Joy and Sadness have to do whatever it takes to get back inside headquarters to prevent her from going too far down the dark path.
What an amazing metaphor for an adolescent brain!
Didn't we all feel like a crazy train wreck of emotions during those years? Or was it just me because my parents put me through a move when I was the same age as Riley's character? I'm bargaining that most young people—male and female—feel so much uncertainty as their mind and body matures that they're often overwhelmed.
The voice actors here are well-known, but thankfully it's not distracting, because they're so perfectly suited to their assigned emotion (especially Smith, who everyone will remember from the American version of The Office).
I laughed, I cried, I mused, I remembered, I reflected, I hurt, I healed... I loved this film.