December 5, 2015

How 'Inside Out' Helped Us All Understand Our Emotions a Little Better

The Pixar empire is built upon their impeccable ability to make everyone, even the most steely of us, feel all the feels.

Of course, film is a medium that inherently examines and attempts to elicit our emotions, and Pixar's Inside Out is certainly their most intentional, quasi-meta, examination to date. Evan Puschak, also known as Nerdwriter, takes a look at how director Pete Docter explores post-Freudian theories on psychology and emotion in Inside Out in this insightful video essay. Check it out below:

Docter has admitted that Inside Out was not intended to be therapeutic, nor a completely accurate explanation of Paul Ekman's psychological model of Emotional Theory. (In fact, the film leaves out two of the seven basic emotions from Ekman's theory, Surprise and Contempt.) Puschak even suggests that the film could be an allegory of our culture rather than an exploration into psychology, stating that if information and data are tantamount to truth in our data-driven society, then the acquisition and loss of it affects us in ways we may not even realize.

Regardless of what was intended by the filmmakers, there's no doubt that audiences, especially the younger ones, will take something away from Inside Out that might teach them a little something about how they work as emotional beings, as well open their eyes to what it's like to be members of a society with endless amounts of information available right at their fingertips.      

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