Inside Out—Growing in Emotional Complexity

Inside Out movie poster
Inside Out

Inside out is a computer animated kid’s movie about the lives of the primary emotions living inside the mind of an eleven-year-old girl named Riley as she moves from Minnesota to San Francisco.

1—Things Go Wrong

Things start going wrong when Sadness starts inadvertently effecting emotions, causing them to turn from happy to sad. This culminates in a sad core memory forming and Joy freaking out and taking it out of the system. The fight over this in turn causes all the core memories to get lost into longterm memory, along with Joy and Sadness.

Once in the depths of Riley’s mind, things continue to go wrong, including running into Riley’s childhood imaginary friend, a shortcut through abstract thought, and being imprisoned in the subconscious. Meanwhile, Riley’s other emotions—Anger, Fear, and Disgust—try to run things but then Riley’s ability to feel starts shutting down.

Needless to say, Joy and Sadness eventually find their way home with the core memories, with Joy learning Sadness actually has a point, an important job, one of which is empathy.


Everything about this movie is cute, even the giant monster clown of Riley’s fears, and I hate clowns. There’s the little blob people that live in the rest of Riley’s mind, the parts apart from the command center. The animation works well for both the simpler look of the emotions and for the outside world, the ‘real’ world.


I enjoyed Inside Out. It was fun, even in its dark parts. It was a good story.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s