Parent Movie Review – Pixar’s Inside Out

Posted by Paul Murray on Tuesday Mar 1, 2016 Under Parent Movie Reviews


Joy, fear, disgust, anger, and sadness are some of the emotions that control the mind of an 11-year-old girl named Riley. She was born in Minnesota and considered a bundle of joy by her loving parents. Growing up as a typical girl, she develops a liking for ice hockey and a loving relationship with her close friend. While everything seems ordinary on the outside, many other things are taking place inside her mind.

Not a day passes by without her emotions guiding her every step of the way. Joy, the leading emotion, tries to maintain optimism as she operates in the control center of Riley’s brain. Fear helps to prevent danger while Disgust keeps her from physical and social poisons. Anger makes sure everything is done in a fair way and Sadness functions just the opposite of Joy. They are doing everything they can do to maintain balance in Riley’s thoughts so the outcome on the outside will all be positive.

Rileys memories from childhood are mostly happy, and they form marble-like figures which will eventually progress to long-term memory storage. The most important events from her core memories become islands of personality that makes her who she is. Among these islands are goofball, friendship, honesty, and family island. Thanks to her emotions who guided her in forming these treasured personalities.

When her father’s business requires the family to move to a new house and community in San Francisco, her balanced life cripples from the inside out. As she copes at school as a newcomer while her restless parents are troubled with financial burden, her emotions are working hard to make the necessary adjustments for dealing with these changes. Riley just cannot let go of the life she used to have; including her old house, best friend, and school. With Joy’s leadership inside the headquarters in Riley’s brain, every single thing gradually falls into its right place.

Along with these unexpected turn of events in Riley’s life comes an unusual habit for Sadness to touch everything. She starts to take the place of Joy in operating Riley from the inside which causes Riley to cry in school when introducing herself. On top of it, she also cannot help but touch the marble-like memories which produce a shade of blue. This stain color represents memories full of sadness, and it needs to be prevented from reaching the core memory bank; otherwise the happy and outgoing Riley will exist no more.

Joy will not let Sadness discolor all the memories, so she hold on to the core memories and tries her best to keep them from Sadness. By doing so, both characters are accidentally absorbed in the tube inside the control tower and thrown outside of the main control area. Without the core memories that define Riley’s values in life, she is now completely lost. The emotions left to navigate her are Fear, Disgust, and Anger.

Violence Content

Riley imagines that she is jumping in lava during her childhood days. When Joy and Sadness try to wake Riley up, they dress up in a dog costume. Suddenly, their costume splits into two pieces. As Joy, Sadness, and Bingbing try to cross a room, their bodies become deformed. Angry, one of Riley’s emotions, harshly criticizes others when he gets mad. Riley steals a credit card from her mother to buy a ticket so she can run away from the new changes in her life. A huge scary clown is one of Riley’s fears that is personified in this film. Some of the characters also fall into a black hole under the ground.

Sexual Content


Drug and Alcohol Content



Inside Out is a creative, brilliant, and heartwarming animated kids movie originally created by Pixar. The film is rated PG for mild thematic elements and some actions. The cast includes Amy Poehler, Phyllis Smith, Lewis Black, Mindy Kaling, Bill Hader, Kaitlyn Dias, Diane Lane, Kyle MacLachlan, and Richard Kind.

The film director Pete Docter shows a picture of what is going on inside the head of an emotionally unstable teen as she goes on the complicated journey of growing up. Complicated as it may seem, the artistic director simplified the story in ways that teens and adults can relate to. To make the accounts factual, he even consulted some psychologists. These factors combined with more interesting particulars make this movie an ambitious one.

Today’s generation is desperately searching for happiness everywhere. Even if it is costly, people should go for it. They know that life is not worth living without this biggest emotion being on top of the list when it comes to their sensations. For some, the ultimate goal in life is to be happy.

This film shows the importance of the emotional balance when dealing with things in life. In the beginning, Joy looks unconvinced about why Sadness is included in the control room of Riley’s brain. She wonders what exactly will the function of Sadness be. Towards the end, it shows that Sadness has a critical role to play since she will be the key for Riley to get rid of all the worries and fears of her life.

Qualities like fear, disgust, anger, and sadness are not ideal emotions. However, when they are used in a positive light, they will aid in coherent decision-making; especially when it comes to handling different situations in life. Fear keeps us safe while disgust helps us make the best decision as we weigh things out. Anger teaches us to be fair, and sadness gives healing for internal wounds. Emotions are good companions, and they can save the day when they work together.

Indeed, the secret to being happy is to be content in any and every situation as stated in Philippians 4:11. Bad situations, not just the good ones, will surely come along the way. However, learning to be content from within will become evident on the outside. For what is on the inside will eventually come out.


All Rights Reserved
Southern Outdoor Cinema

Southern Outdoor Cinema of Atlanta, creates extraordinary outdoor movie events that captures
all the senses of their client’s audience while recreating the nostalgic feeling of a close-knit
community gathering.  For a free event consultation contact Southern Outdoor Cinema at




Comments are closed.