Pixar’s Soul Review

Credit: Pixar/Disney

Disney has experimented with the live-action Mulan, releasing it as premium content under Disney+. With the upcoming Pixar film, Soul, it will forgo any extra fees and will be heading straight to Disney+ on Christmas 2020. Pixar films are known to convey thoughtful messages in unique ways, and Soul is no different. The story touches on life and death, heavy subject matter for a family film, and it’s an emotional adventure that will inspire many to stop and smell the roses.

Jamie Foxx voices Joe Gardner, a middle-school band teacher who dreams of performing at the best jazz club in town. His life starts to turn around for the better, but that ends when he falls down a sewer to his doom. As a soul, he’ll do whatever it takes to get back to his former life, but he’ll face plenty of obstacles, including trying to help out a soul named 22 (voiced by Tina Fey).

Souls head to the afterlife after their physical flesh perish on Earth, but where do the souls come from? The Great Before is the place that cultivates these souls, filling them with personalities and purpose. Joe will need to convince 22 about the wonders of the human experience in order to get back on Earth.

Pete Docter is back at the helm after Inside Out and Up, and he is joined by co-director Kemp Powers (One Night in Miami). With Soul, the directors and the Pixar team have crafted a tale that takes a deep dive into the meaning of life and what makes people happy. Is it eating food, playing sports or performing with an instrument? The age-old question is at play here, and the filmmakers have given us the ups and downs through the eyes of Joe and 22.

Credit: Pixar/Disney

Jamie Foxx and Tina Fey are at their elements here as they convey their comical and emotional side. It’s a very intimate film that still has moments to highlight other characters and the beautiful and detailed world of Soul, whether the characters are at The Great Before or on the streets of Manhattan.

With Earth, Pixar gets to play with more human characters, showing off how far the animation studio has come with textures, lighting and models. The Great Before and other abstract worlds allow the animators and artists to have fun with their imagination, and we see this through the many inhabitants in the Great Before.

Credit: Pixar/Disney

Jazz music is a focal point for Joe’s life, and the film captures the atmosphere well with stage lighting and moving music. However, the film isn’t limited to just jazz since it explores the many wonders of life as well as the relationships we have with each other.

Final Reaction

Pixar has elevated itself again with Soul, reaching the upper echelon of Pixar’s library. The message is poignant, especially during these times, and it asks you to appreciate the many delights our world has to offer.

Score: 4.5/5 Atoms

Pixar’s Soul will be available exclusively on Disney+ on December 25, 2020.

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John Nguyen
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