This review originally was published from Cannes in May. Pixar may have taken off a rare year with no feature film releases in 2014, but the animation studio is back with a vengeance this year with two new films including the November The Good Dinosaur and, coming up on June 19, Inside Out, which is having its World Premiere today in an out-of-competition slot at the Cannes Film Festival. From director Pete Docter, who opened this festival with Up in 2009 and went on to win an Oscar for Best Animated Feature, Inside Out is, as I say in my video review above, a wildly original and inventive toon that, quite frankly, is unlike any other animated movie I have seen. In fact, it might be the most creative and visually dazzling animated feature to come through since Disney’s Fantasia 75 years ago. Expect it to take Cannes by storm and put Docter right back in the thick of the Oscar race for this, yes, mind-blowing experience.
Eleven-year-old Riley is upset because her family had to up and leave her Midwest roots and move to San Francisco. This puts her emotions into overdrive, trying to deal with her ever-changing moods. That’s right these emotions are the stars of the film and seen in the form of characters named Joy (Amy Poehler), Fear (Bill Hader), Anger (Lewis Black), Disgust (Mindy Kaling) and Sadness (Kaling’s The Office colleague Phyllis Smith). They operate from a control panel at the “headquarters” inside her head. And of course, they all disagree on how to deal with these life-changing events, eventually sending Joy and Sadness out of headquarters and into their weird adventures that are among the most visually creative seen in a Pixar film.
This film could be, pardon the pun, over the head of the youngest viewers with this abstract concept, but even so the visuals onscreen will keep them rapt all the way. And adults will not be bored one minute. It’s a family treat for everyone. It is sure to be a front-runner for Best Animated Film but, like Up, could well find itself in the Best Picture race too. Docter, Josh Cooley and Meg Lefauve wrote the clever script. Ronaldo Del Carmen is the co-director. Diane Lane, Kyle MacLachlan, Richard Kind and Kaitlyn Dias round out the key voice cast. Producer is Jonas Rivera.
Do you plan to see Inside Out? Let us know what you think.