Search This Blog

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Inside In

So I went to see a kids movie. I thought, since it was a matinee in the middle of the week, I’d have the theater to myself or nearly so. Nope, apparently the munchkins finished school on the 24th of this month.

The joint was jammed with small fry zooming around like packs of jet propelled ecstatic sharks. Joy. Successfully dodging the kid-mines, I found my seat and yes, in this packed house I was surrounded by popcorn and jujube snarfing energy machines. More joy.

Here’s the thing though, this was the Braintree theater where every seat is the size of the Lazboy Cooper Power-time recliner. Also too, I’m deaf. The brats can make all the noise they want—their gleeful agitato won’t distract me from enjoying the moviola. Though hemmed in on all sides by percolating, jiggly kiddles, I was safe in my giant, cushioned, quiet island of a chair.

And then, then the commercials began. Swear ta Bast there was 20 minutes worth of ads flogging mondo SUVs. Clearly the auto marketeers knew they’d have a captive, suffering parental audience at an animated feature. BOOM, time to sell them outsized, gas guzzling monsters that’ll float the promise of quiet rides even if the back’s loaded with Sweetie’s entire, excited soccer team.

I considered walking out. I didn’t pay eight bucks to see endless (seemingly) slick, high end squibs for Nissan, Ford and VW. But then the movie began. It started with some musical story about a lonely volcano, singing for a mate. He nearly goes extinct but then a lady volcano springs up outta the ocean, brings him back to life and they live happily ever after. The End.


 Seriously, ‘the fuck was that all about? It had nothing to do with the story of the interior emotional workings of a tween, unhappy over her family’s move from Minnesota to San Francisco (N.B., the town in Minnesota is never named. It’s just some blissful pastoral ideal.)

The basic (wickedly so) story is that we, the audience, has a view inside Riley, the kid’s head. We see her emotions—she gets five. Joy, Sadness, Anger, Disgust and Fear. They’re located at emotion HQ in Riley’s head and help her cope with her world.

 COOL idea!

Somehow Joy and Sadness are pushed out of HQ—Anger, Disgust and Fear are left running the show. Yeah, cue the ominous music. The movie mostly focuses on Joy and Sadness’ struggle to preserve Riley’s good memories and return to the Control Center in order to guide her through this hard
transition—the big fat move.

Long Term Memory Stacks
My fav parts of the flick were when Bing Bong, Riley’s nearly forgotten imaginary friend, leads Joy and Sadness through Imagination Land and Abstract Thought. I’d see the movie again just for those fantastically inventive scenes.

Given that this is a Disney offering, there’s a neat, tidy happy ending. No, the family doesn’t pick up and move back to the rural Midwest of her happy memories BUT Riley’s parents discuss how hard the move, the change is. They empathize with her. They help her get through the big-ass hard transition. Wow. I was all wistful and jealous. In the eight moves that my family made together, my folks never once rocked that Disney idyllic parenthood thing. Gee. Rilly!? Muti and Vati Maderer were real versus romanticized bits of fluffy fiction? Shocking!


There’s more to the story of course. Rachel Simon’s got a fab post over at Bustle:
Is 'Inside Out' About Depression? The Pixar Film Isn't Afraid To Put Sadness In The Spotlight.

Check it out.

No comments:

Post a Comment