INSIDE OUT

 Posted by on June 10, 2015  Film/TV, Pencil-Jockey, Reviews
Jun 102015
 

INSIDE OUT is an unusual film for a big studio to make; it is very ambitious and abstract. I worked on the story team from 2010 to late 2012, and everyone was excited about the idea, but dramatising that idea was at times quite challenging. I finally saw the film at a crew Wrap Party screening last month, and I'm very pleased to say that it has come out wonderfully well.

Inside_Out

While enjoying the screening of INSIDE OUT, many conflicting and complicated feelings bubbled to the surface for me. Not long after wrestling with the challenges of dramatising the inner workings of the human mind, as part of the INSIDE OUT story team, a blood vessel burst in my head, and I was trapped inside my own mind for quite some time, as my body dealt with the effects of a swollen and ruptured brain. I've had a very rocky few years, and seeing the film reminded me of my own struggles; locked inside my own mind and struggling like crazy to get out.

So understandably, this film will always have personal significance for me, and perhaps I'm unable to be unbiased when I watch it. Even under less dramatic circumstances, working on these things means that it's hard to know how other people will respond. Sometimes the general public likes a film more than me, sometimes less. Will my own feelings about this film be typical?

An early INSIDE OUT Story Crew lunch in 2011.

But for whatever my biased (and emotionally charged) opinion is worth, I feel that this is one of the great Pixar movies, and Pete Docter and his team have once again made a film to make people sit up and take notice. It is deep, and heartfelt, but funny and imaginative, and takes you to places that only an animated film can go. It's a real return to form for the studio.

I hope with all my heart that this isn't my last film as a pro story artist (I'm currently pushing hard on physical therapy and left-handed drawing practise to get back in the game) but if it is to be my career epitaph, at least I'll be ending on a very high note and a movie to be proud of.

Inside_Out_WrapParty

The entire story team at the recent wrap party.

INSIDE OUT opens across the USA next week, on June 19th. Please go see it. I think you'll like it.

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  53 Responses to “INSIDE OUT”

  1. Many of my colleagues are looking forward to taking their families to see this….

  2. I brought a 10-year old girl with me to see it. We both loved it.

  3. Seen it twice. Great, great work, Baker.

  4. Great to hear you were involved with it – we were only discussing the add last night. All 3 x kids keen to see, will update you when viewing complete.

  5. Listened to an interview with Peter Docter on NPR today. From what I heard, it must be a teriffic movie.

  6. You are the best Jamie! Truly one of the good guys. Keep pushing. Health and Happiness. Go see Inside Out everyone!
    Respect and Love
    A.J.

  7. My kid is so pumped he is keeping track of the days until it is coming out….the 19th of this month…we are going to Disney land through the eighteenth so he considers us lucky for being home in time not to miss the release on the nineteenth. .lol

  8. This picture looks like a real winner James, something to be proud of indeed.
    I'll keep an eye out for it,not sure when it'll be released in the antipodes though.
    Keep swinging that southpaw kid, it ain't over yet.

    • Hey Arthur! It's not really like anything I've seen before (despite internet lamebrains claiming that it's a ripoff of 'Herman's Head').

  9. I'm looking forward to seeing this James… Because of you :0)

  10. Yes i shall! my nephew Matt Silas worked on it super excited

  11. OMG! Best kids movie in years! Thx JB – incredibly enjoyable.

    • Glad that the Lawlor clan liked it!

    • Not everyone likes it though. Here is one of the 2% of BAD reviews on Rotten Tomatoes:
      http://www.newyorker.com/culture/richard-brody/the-curse-of-the-pixar-universe

    • Haha…well, he's writing for the New Yorker so he has to hate children's movies

    • Huh. The only comparison I can see between the two movies is when watching Tree Of Life I imagined Malik laughing AT all of us and when watching Inside Out, I imagined you guys laughing WITH all of us. 😝

    • I quite liked Tree Of Life, and the way it evoked a certain mood of a certain age. But I was surprised that a film critic would seriously propose it as a template for a Disney movie.

    • Being a huge fan of Terrence Malik I loved Tree of Life. However, it's not a movie made for wide audiences or necessarily for kids. It's entirely different in that it has a self conscious reflection of life as a child that is depicted with realism whereas Inside Out is poetic in its metaphor and humor. The communication style in Pixar movies is meant to charm and enthrall where Malik seems to be striving for meditation. I don't think a movie Ike Tree of Life would work as well animated and I am sure it's audience would be supremely disappointed.

    • I thoroughly enjoyed other Malik movies; that was my least fave. It was an interesting choice for the critic to choose, wasn't it.

    • He seems like a bit of an Ebenezer Scrooge contrarian, and tips his hand in the first paragraph:

      "I emerged from the theatre feeling like W. C. Fields, hating children, all children, even my children"

  12. Brilliant James!!! Congrats on making me cry 3 times.

  13. loved it. Saw your name at the top.

  14. It has easily become my favorite movie from Pixar. It made me cry quite embarrassing times to embarrassing extent, being touched with multiple colorful hands at once so that sometimes I did not even know why I am crying.
    F**k this is a great film!

    • Hey Pat! I'm so glad that you liked INSIDE OUT. It was one of the more difficult movies I've ever worked on, just from a creative point of view. At times, it seemed so abstract that the concern was that audiences, and especially kids, may not connect. It is a real tribute to Pete Docter, and to all his crew, that they kept working at it and brought it all to life.

    • I saw a little girl in the same row who was probably around 7 yrs at the theater. She was pretty moody to her parents and younger brother before the show, asking a bunch of miscellaneous requests like switching seats, demanding different soda and stuff. During the movie, however, she happened to be dead quiet. After the lights turned on, still astonished in awe. She eventually left with her family, absolutely with no word while others were exchanging their impressions passionately.
      I thought perhaps she was busy checking the status of her inner "Honesty Land" or "Family Land". I blame you guys for traumatizing a lot of sensitive kids like that 😉

  15. That story team had real challenges visualizing those story beats! But it was handled so well it made 90 minutes feel like 20. Great stuff.

  16. i took my niece (8) to see Inside Out last week and both thoroughly enjoyed it. It was fantastic to continue talking about how we felt by relating to the characters. What a truly clever film.

  17. Chris, Felix, Venus (second viewing, first with friends), Elia (19 yr old cousin) and I, went to see Inside Out today…….great great GREAT film!!! It has changed how we look at our kids….seriously especially teenage girls…yikes. Teenage consoles are multilevel for sure. big love the haugesxxxx

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