My family received tickets to a screening of Inside Out to facilitate this review. All opinions are my own.
Disney•Pixar’s Official Synopsis:
Based in Headquarters, the control center inside 11-year-old Riley’s mind, five Emotions are hard at work, led by lighthearted optimist Joy (voice of Amy Poehler), whose mission is to make sure Riley stays happy. Fear (voice of Bill Hader) heads up safety, Anger (voice of Lewis Black) ensures all is fair and Disgust (voice of Mindy Kaling) prevents Riley from getting poisoned—both physically and socially. Sadness (voice of Phyllis Smith) isn’t exactly sure what her role is, and frankly, neither is anyone else.
When Riley’s family relocates to a scary new city, the Emotions are on the job, eager to help guide her through the difficult transition. But when Joy and Sadness are inadvertently swept into the far reaches of Riley’s mind—taking some of her core memories with them—Fear, Anger and Disgust are left reluctantly in charge. Joy and Sadness must venture through unfamiliar places—Long Term Memory, Imagination Land, Abstract Thought and Dream Productions—in a desperate effort to get back to Headquarters, and Riley.
Got that? Yeah, I really didn’t either until we actually saw it. There seems to be so much going on. It’s somewhat complex and cerebral (pun intended,) and I frankly wondered if the kids would enjoy it. You’ve got Riley and her story of losing her home, friends and confidence, but also the literal inner story of her own Emotions Joy and Sadness getting lost and ultimately finding their way, not only for themselves but for Riley too.
It’s Disney•Pixar, so of course I figured it was worth seeing. Pixar ALWAYS is in my book. And truly, now that we’ve seen it, I can absolutely say it’s worth the price of admission for so many reasons, but wanted to share just a few of mine.
Our Top 3 Reason’s to Go See Inside Out:
#1 Ellie (5) says, “It’s the funniest movie I’ve ever seen.” Yes, that is a direct quote, and we watched it at 7pm on a school night when both she and Ronin may have been tired and grumpy after a full day of activity. The kids really enjoyed it. I’d say that the humor they picked up on was probably different from the humor John and I enjoyed. Like every good Pixar film, Inside Out infuses multiple levels of funny that appeal to varying age groups.
#2 It’s gotten the kids talking more about their own Emotions. I wrote about this phenomenon yesterday and it absolutely has been a huge benefit to seeing this film (and playing with the toys.) My kids are very visual beings. Bringing feelings to life with these funny colorful characters has given the kids an avenue to which they can personally relate for discussing their own Joy, Sadness, Anger, Fear and Disgust. Don’t forget to check out my printable feelings flash cards inspired by the film for a tangible way to bring your kids conversations to life.
#3 There’s an emotional payoff for grown-ups too. I do have to admit that the middle of the film was a bit slow for me, but the final build up at the end was truly emotional in a good way. John and I both cried. We seriously did. The kids both said they almost cried, but they didn’t seem upset about it. I don’t think the ending hit them quite as much as us because the final scenes were so touching to us AS PARENTS.
I don’t want to throw out any spoilers, but I so so love the message of this film. I talked a lot about it in my post yesterday but I really think the creators hit on something very special. I know my kids are still pretty young, but even at 5 and 7 I’m seeing their emotions develop and become more complex. Riley’s story of preteen angst is a theme that I think a lot of families will relate to, learn from and enjoy.
The Emotions and other characters inside Riley’s mind are very well done … cute, funny and entertaining. I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the giant clown seen for a brief scene about half way through. At this point, Ellie decided to sit on my lap, but it was over pretty quickly. He just walks around and doesn’t do anything bad, but we saw the film in 3D and he was pretty huge! So keep that in mind if you have kids afraid of clowns.
If you haven’t heard, Sadness is my absolute favorite. She may not understand her role in Riley’s life, but by the end, she’ll learn she’s very important. Joy can bound over hot lava, but Sadness is what brings us together.
Directed by Academy Award® winner Pete Docter (“Monsters, Inc.”, “Up”), produced by Jonas Rivera, p.g.a. (“Up”) and featuring an original score by Michael Giacchino (“The Incredibles,” “Ratatouille,” “Up”), Disney•Pixar’s Inside Out opens in theaters on June 19, 2015.
Opening Date: Friday, June 19th
Running Time: 106 Mins
Printable Inside Out Kids Activities!
How did you like Inside Out?!
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