Posted on Monday, May 18th, 2015 by Peter Sciretta
The embargo has finally broken for Pixar’s Inside Out and Brad Bird’s Tomorrowland, and you can read the buzz reports compiling the early critical reactions at the links above. I’ve seen both films and have decided to write up my thoughts in a virtually spoiler-free reaction. Hit the jump for my thoughts.
Inside Out Review/Reaction
Pixar is back and this new film will register as a return to form for fans of the Emeryville animation studio who have been disappointed with the company’s reliance on sequels as of late.
I remember when Brave was released, it was pushed as the first Pixar film with a strong female character in the starring role.
Inside Out is a much better film in that respect. Not only is there a relatable female character in the human world, but the emotions inside her head, with the two dominant emotions personified as female characters, also ring true. When I walked out of the film at CinemaCon in Las Vegas, I asked my colleague and friend Christina Warren if there was a better female-driven story not just in Pixar’s catalogue, but in Disney animation history. You could maybe argue for some of the recent Disney animation princess movies like Frozen, Tangled or The Princess and The Frog, but for my money there isn’t a stronger and more relatable female-focused Disney animated film than Inside Out.
And while the film takes place in the mind of a girl about to enter her teenage years, the story will definitely resonate with anyone with a heart, and a especially anyone who is a parent. CinemaCon is a convention for theater exhibitors who aren’t often emotionally sucked into the films screened by studios, but there wasn’t a dry eye in the house before the movie was over. (I also maybe shed some tears.)
I love the creativity that went into this concept and the ideas behind the world inside the mind of a young girl. That said, I was not impressed by the character and production design of that inside world, so it’s not a surprise that (it seems) Disney is having trouble marketing those colorful characters to the public thus far. But trust me and the others who have seen the film, it is one of the best films I’ve seen this year so far.
On the next page you’ll find my early Tomorrowland review/reaction.