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DISNEY

MOVIE INFO

Director:
Pete Docter
Cast:
Amy Poehler, Phyllis Smith, Richard Kind, Lewis Black, Bill Hader, Mindy Kaling
Writing Credits:
Pete Docter, Meg LeFauve and Josh Cooley

Synopsis:
After young Riley is uprooted from her Midwest life and moved to San Francisco, her emotions - Joy, Fear, Anger, Disgust and Sadness - conflict on how best to navigate a new city, house, and school.

Box Office:
Budget
$175 million.
Opening Weekend
$90,440,272 on 3,946 Screens.
Domestic Gross
$354,363,926.

MPAA:
Rated PG

DISC DETAILS
Presentation:
Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
Audio:
English DTS-HD MA 7.1
English DTS-HD HR 5.1
English Descriptive Video Service 2.0
English Dolby Digital 2.0
French Dolby Digital 5.1
Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles:
English
French
Spanish
Closed-captioned
Supplements Subtitles:
English
Spanish
French
Castillian
Danish
Dutch
Finnish
Quebecois
German
Italian
Norwegian
Portuguese
Russian
Swedish

Runtime: 95 min.
Price: $39.99
Release Date: 11/3/2015

Bonus:
• Audio Commentary with Director Pete Docter and Co-Director Ronnie Del Carmen
• Two Animated Shorts
• “Paths to Pixar: The Women of Inside Out” Featurette
• “Mixed Emotions” Featurette
• “Story of the Story” Featurette
• “Mapping the Mind” Featurette
• “Our Dads, The Filmmakers” Featurette
• “Into the Unknown: The Sound of Inside Out” Featurette
• “The Misunderstood Art of Animation Film Editing” Featurette
• “Mind Candy” Featurette
• Five Deleted Scenes
• Three Trailers
• Sneak Peeks
• DVD Copy


PURCHASE @ AMAZON.COM

EQUIPMENT
Panasonic TC-P60VT60 60-Inch 1080p 600Hz 3D Smart Plasma HDTV; Sony STR-DG1200 7.1 Channel Receiver; Panasonic DMP-BD60K Blu-Ray Player using HDMI outputs; Michael Green Revolution Cinema 6i Speakers (all five); Kenwood 1050SW 150-watt Subwoofer.

RELATED REVIEWS


Inside Out [Blu-Ray] (2015)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (November 3, 2015)

For the studio’s first 15 years, Pixar enjoyed a tremendous ride, as virtually all of the films they produced earned excellent reviews and great box office receipts. Even the movie with the weakest critical reception – 2006’s Cars - still received pretty good notices, and it made a ton of money.

Then 2011’s Cars 2 hit and Pixar’s fortunes changed. Not only did Cars 2 get fairly poor reviews, but also it disappointed at the box office.

From there, Pixar struggled – in relative terms, at least. Their next two flicks – 2012’s Brave and 2013’s Monsters University - both earned good but not great reviews along with good but not great box office. Again, objectively these flicks did fine, but compared with Pixar’s stellar legacy, they fell short of prior glories.

After a two-year break, Pixar returned with a bang via 2015’s Inside Out. Not only did the film enjoy stellar reviews – a remarkable 98 percent on Rotten Tomatoes – but also it soared at the box office. With a US take of $355 million, it became Pixar’s third highest-grossing film ever after 2010’s Toy Story 3 and 2003’s Finding Nemo.

Does this mean we’ll enter a new Pixar renaissance? That remains to be seen, but at the very least, Inside Out reminds audiences what made the studio special.

The story introduces us to Riley (voiced by Kaitlyn Dias), an 11-year-old girl whose life gets uprooted when her family moves from Minnesota to San Francisco. We view her experiences through the literal perspective of her emotions, as we enter her mind to see how these machinations work.

This means we meet the forces that guide Riley’s day to day life: Joy (Amy Poehler) seems to dominate, but she shares time with Sadness (Phyllis Smith), Fear (Bill Hader), Anger (Lewis Black) and Disgust (Mindy Kaling). They work to keep Riley’s life in balance as she adapts to her new surroundings, a task that complicates when an accident damages Riley’s “core memories” and Joy and Sadness need to team up to restore them.

I can’t claim that the concept of Inside Out seems wholly original, as other films have attempted to view human experiences through similar “internal” perspectives. Heck, Disney even used to offer an EPCOT attraction called “Cranium Command” that featured a similar conceit.

That said, Inside Out manages to seem fresh, and I care more about execution than originality anyway. If poorly done, the most brilliant idea in the world will still flop, and a well-made exploration of tried and true topics can be a blast.

Inside Out opts for clever most of the time and gives us a witty – and often moving – take on its subject matter. My only minor complaint also could be viewed as a positive: the story’s ambition. The film tries so hard to account for so many aspects of personality/mental workings that internal logic becomes strained. Occasionally the inconsistencies turn into distractions, as I sometimes find myself a little too preoccupied with these areas than I should.

Still, those instances go quickly, and Inside Out seems so creative and inventive that I can’t hold its ambition against it. No egregious leaps of faith occur anyway, as most of the movie holds together in a reasonably consistent manner.

The casting of Poehler adds a lot to the experience. A perpetually happy character like Joy could quickly become annoying, so the film needed someone who’d bring some dimension to the role. Poehler does that – she never makes Joy overtly snarky, but she contributes a gentle undercurrent of edginess that helps the part.

Because Joy serves as the lead, the other actors don’t require quite so much range, but they do well nonetheless. In particular, Richard Kind’s performance as Bing Bong, Riley’s now-forgotten imaginary friend, adds real depth to the movie. Bing Bong could just be a goofy diversion, but Kind gives him heart and creates some of the film’s most indelible moments.

Should it surprise me that a movie about feelings becomes so moving? Perhaps not, but the emotional punch of Inside Out still becomes more powerful than anticipated.

The choice to make Riley 11 really pays off in that regard, as this age allows for more emotional range than otherwise might be the case. A younger Riley would be more silly/giddy, and an older Riley would likely be more settled.

A Riley on the cusp of puberty, though, comes with all the emotions inherent in that time of life, and the story’s decision to put her in the middle of geographical upheaval complicates those issues. This could become gratuitous, but it works – especially for an older viewer.

The strongest animated films succeed for adults as well as for kids, but Inside Out is one that I think probably serves the grown-ups best. Sporting a depth greater than most in the genre, Inside Out connects with a sense of melancholy that kids won’t get. Adults obviously view their pasts differently than kids do, so it’s easier for us to connect with the joy and sadness simultaneously inherent in many memories.

And the movie doesn’t resort to silly comedy to get there. Some other films of this sort don't trust themselves, so they throw out goofy sequences to leaven the more mature sentiments.

Some of that happens in Inside Out - we’re not in Pixar’s version of Bergman – but the lighter bits remain reasonably subdued, and they never undercut the emotion. The film doesn’t wallow in melancholy but it allows those moments to resonate.

Truthfully, I wasn’t wild about Inside Out when I saw it theatrically, perhaps due to expectations, as I think I anticipated more of a giddy comedy. Now that I’ve seen it again, though, I can better appreciate the film on its own terms, and I can see what a rich, memorable tale it tells. Inside Out provides an honest, moving and delightful story that really soars.


The Blu-ray Grades: Picture A/ Audio B+/ Bonus B

Inside Out appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.78:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. As expected, the movie delivered excellent visuals.

At all times, the film showed terrific delineation. No instances of softness arose, so the image remained tight and well-defined. I witnessed no jagged edges or shimmering, and edge haloes were absent. Of course, no print flaws popped up, probably because the transfer went straight from digital file to Blu-ray without an actual “print” involved.

Colors excelled. Given all the imaginative situations, the film boasted a broad, lively palette, and the hues came across with great vivacity. Blacks appeared dark and deep, and shadows seemed smooth and concise. Everything about the image satisfied.

I also felt pleased with the film’s DTS-HD MA 7.1 soundtrack. Much of the audio stayed with general sense of the various situations, as only a few action scenes resulted. The livelier sequences displayed nice range and involvement, and the rest of the material also managed to place us in the locations well. The track used the different channels to convey a lot of subtle but engaging information.

Audio quality satisfied. Speech remained natural and distinctive, while music appeared peppy and clear. Effects showed nice dynamics, with crisp highs and warm lows. I thought the soundtrack added zest to the proceedings.

As we move to extras, we open with an audio commentary from director Pete Docter and co-director Ronnie Del Carmen; director of photography Patrick Lin and actor Bill Hader also appear for short visits. Docter and Del Carmen sit together for this running, screen-specific look at story/character areas as well as editing and cinematography, cast and performances, and related domains.

As implied by my little synopsis, Docter and Del Carmen devote the majority of their chat to issues connected to the narrative and the characters. I like that emphasis, as it details a slew of interesting choices made in the film’s production. The other topics balance out the track and help make this a terrific commentary.

Two animated shorts appear here. Lava (7:12) accompanied theatrical screenings of Inside Out, whereas Riley’s First Date? (4:40) is new to the Blu-ray.

Lava tells the tale of a lonely volcano. Frankly, it plays like a parody of a Pixar short. Other cartoons have allowed inanimate objects to come to life in satisfying stories, but Lava just seems stupid. It’s arguably the studio’s weakest short and is too cutesy for its own good.

As for Date, it re-introduces us to Jordan, the boy Riley bumps into at the rink toward the movie’s end. We see how various parties react to Riley’s possible first date. It brings back all the original actors and offers an amusing and fun coda.

A slew of featurettes ensue. Paths to Pixar: The Women of Inside Out goes for 11 minutes, 22 seconds and offers details from production manager Dana Murray, director of photography Kim White, writer Meg LeFauve, story artist Domee Shi, editorial manager Becky Neiman-Cobb, director’s assistant Victoria Manley Thompson, story manager Samantha Wilson, lighting lead Angelique Reisch, animator Belen Gil-Palacios, directing Jaime Roe, sets manager Deirdre Warin, and actors Amy Poehler, Phyllis Smith and Mindy Kaling. They tell us about how they got into their jobs and they reflect on aspects of the movie. Parts of this feel like gratuitous attempts at empowerment, but we find some interesting reflections along the way.

In the seven-minute, 17-second b>Mixed Emotions, we hear from Docter, Del Carmen, White, Poehler, art coordinators May Iosotaluno and Pauline Chu, producer Jonas Rivera, production designer Ralph Eggleston, character art director Albert Lozano, character artist Chris Sasaki, and supervising animator Victor Navone. The featurette offers a quick overview of character design for the movie’s main emotions. Despite is brevity, the clip gives us a solid overview.

Next we find Story of the Story. This 10-minute, 30-second piece offers info from Docter, Del Carmen, Rivera, LeFauve, Poehler, story supervisor Josh Cooley and actor Bill Hader. We hear about the roots and development of the movie’s narrative and characters. We get some of this info during the commentary but “Story” still expands on the subject matter in a satisfying manner.

With Mapping the Mind, we locate an eight-minute, 24-second program with notes from Eggleston, Rivera, Docter, Del Carmen, Cooley, White, sets art director Daniel Holland, psychology professor Dr. Dacher Keltner, previs artist Philip Metschan, and character artist Chris Sasaki. “Mapping” covers set design for Riley’s mind. It becomes another rich and informative piece.

Our Dads, The Filmmakers fills seven minutes, 25 seconds with info from director’s daughter Elie Docter and composer’s daughter Gracie Giacchino. They create their own short documentary about what their dads do for a living. This offers an unusual perspective and works better than expected.

After this we get Into the Unknown: The Sound of Inside Out. In this seven-minute, nine-second reel, we locate comments from Rivera, Docter, sound designer Ren Klyce and supervising sound editor Shannon Mills. As expected, “Unknown” looks at the audio found in the film. Like its predecessors, “Unknown” delivers a tight, useful piece.

During the four-minute, 43-second The Misunderstood Art of Animation Film Editing, we hear from Docter, Cooley and film editor Kevin Nolting. Like the title says, “Art” examines aspects of editing for animated movies. Expect another enjoyable show.

Finally, Mind Candy lasts 14 minutes, 26 seconds and offers a series of quick snippets. We see the movie’s emotions as they go through a slew of brief comedic bits for the first six minutes or so. After that, we “meet” the emotions and see how they impact Riley’s behavior. This is a cute and amusing collection.

Four Deleted Scenes occupy a total of 16 minutes, 53 seconds. We find “Riley Grows Up” (4:45), “Joy’s Decline” (3:42), “Misdirection” (4:12) and “Construction” (3:17). These offer some story points that go down unusual paths, so they’re fun to see.

Note that the time totals include introductions from Docter. He tells us background for the sequences and lets us know why they didn’t make the film. Docter reviews the material in a satisfying manner that adds to the compilation of scenes.

The disc opens with ads for The Good Dinosaur, Toy Story That Time Forgot and Tomorrowland. Sneak Peeks adds clips for Disney Infinity 3.0 and Disney resorts. We also get three trailers for Inside Out, including an odd Japanese promo that makes the movie look rather different than it actually is.

A second disc presents a DVD copy of Inside Out. It features the Lava short and the commentary but lacks all the other extras.

Pixar’s best effort in years, Inside Out offers a terrific experience. The movie packs comedy, drama and adventure to provide a lively, enjoyable and unusual tale. The Blu-ray boasts excellent picture and good audio as well as a nice set of supplements. Inside Out dazzles.

Viewer Film Ratings: 4.6363 Stars Number of Votes: 11
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Review Archive:  # | A-C | D-F | G-I | J-L | M-O | P-R | S-U | V-Z | Viewer Ratings | Main