*Arkham Knight Update: Very close to the end! Review coming soon!*
Can Pixar make a comeback with one animated film? Yes, yes it can. This animated film was first released on June 19th, 2015, and opened up to rave reviews and $273.6 million at the box office. Although Pixar had seemed to have an over-reliance on sequels, this film brought back their reputation of original concepts and innovative storytelling. Inspired by a Walt Disney short from World War II, the plot revolves around the idea of emotions having control on a person’s mind and life. We follow Riley, an 11-year-old girl whose life changes quickly. Her mind, and every other person’s, contains five emotions: Anger, Disgust, Fear, Sadness, and Joy. These emotions are fleshed out through both fantastic writing and a pitch perfect voice cast. Lewis Black plays Anger, Bill Hader voiced Fear, Mindy Kaling is perfectly Disgusted, Phyllis Smith is particularly Sad as Sadness, and Amy Poehler stands out as the exuberant Joy. The five emotions have a fight when Riley and her parents move from Minnesota to California, losing their moving truck for some time. Joy tries her best to keep Riley optimistic in this scenario, and also shuts Sadness out of the picture. This leads them to get ejected from headquarters, and must work together to trek across Riley’s mind. There are plenty of Easter Eggs from Pixar’s past films, including a dead rat that references back to their underrated film, Ratatouille. And the script is consistently funny, delivering jokes that appeal to both adults and children, the only way Pixar would know how to craft. And thanks to excellent pacing and direction by veteran director Peter Docter, there’s never a dull moment to be had in Inside Out. The writing is superb, the cast is perfect, and the soundtrack by Michael Giacchino is imaginative as hell. I feel like it’s a crime against cinema, but I actually didn’t cry during this film, unlike some others I know who saw it. Still, it was a moving and insightful tale of how poignant our emotions can be, and how fragile they make our lives. Even just a few weeks after its release, Inside Out already stands as one of Pixar Studios best animated films to date. I have no problem watching it again.