Film Review — Inside Out 2

Pixar’s second outing inside Riley’s head imaginatively deploys puberty-induced new emotions, but lacks the poignancy of the original

Simon Dillon
Simon Dillon Cinema

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Credit: Pixar/Disney

Inside Out (2015) was a blip of brilliance in the decidedly inconsistent years following Pixar’s golden era of back-to-back masterpieces. Pete Docter and Ronaldo Del Carmen’s tale of an eleven-year-old girl called Riley and her emotional crisis, personified by various feelings in her brain, struck a chord with audiences worldwide. As far as I’m concerned, it’s a perfectly formed gem that should have won Best Picture, and I’m unashamed to admit I was moved to tears by it.

Now we get the sequel, doubtless demanded from up on high by Disney’s corporate bigwigs. Inside Out didn’t need a sequel, but as it stands, Inside Out 2 could have been much, much worse. It certainly isn’t up to the standard of the original, but it was never going to be. Instead, new director Kelsey Mann takes over from Pete Docter (who stays on as executive producer), overseeing the animation to Pixar’s usual high standard, with a screenplay by Meg LeFauve and Dave Holstein that tackles Riley two years later, having had her thirteenth birthday, just entering puberty.

With Riley looking forward to going to camp where she tries out for a high school ice hockey…

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Simon Dillon
Simon Dillon Cinema

Novelist and Short Story-ist. Film and Book Lover. If you cut me, I bleed celluloid and paper pulp. Blog: www.simondillonbooks.wordpress.com