DISNEY PIXAR SOUL FILM REVIEW

The animated film Soul made by Disney Pixar in 2020. Actually it differs from other Pixar films in some points. In this film, deeper thoughts about life, topics such as the purpose of life, death, is there a passion brought from birth are processed with an emotional narrative. At this point, I believe that this film stands out from the stereotype perception that Disney movies are made for children, it also appeals quite a lot to adults, and they will find a lot of themselves in the film.

Apr 22, 2024 - 22:45
Apr 23, 2024 - 13:56
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DISNEY PIXAR SOUL FILM REVIEW
DISNEY PIXAR SOUL FILM REVIEW

Our film starts in a middle school music class. Our main character, music teacher Joe, realizes that a student is getting involved in music while practicing with an uninterested music class, but when the class who sees this makes fun of this student, the girl is embarrassed and withdraws herself. Joe saying that it is very important and that this is what he really wants. And he tells the story of his own introduction to music: at the age of 11, he locks himself in with the pianist at a jazz club where he went to with his father and decides that he was born to play at that moment.

Just then, the principal comes in from the classroom and tells Joe that he can  teach full-time and work in this position permanently. But Joe, whose only dream all his life has been to get on the stage, is not happy with this offer at all. We see that when he told his mother about this offer, his mother was very pleased with this offer. Joe's mother's idea about this offer is ‘so after all these years, all my prayers have been came true, finally a full-time job!’ we are all very familiar with the conflict between our parents' wishes and our decrees. In this sense, we are watching a very real scene.

Uncertain between his teaching job and his dream job, Joe receives a call from a former student. They invite him to play in a famous jazz band. Hearing this, Joe becomes the happiest person in the world. Finally, the day he has been waiting for all his life has come. According to him, after he goes on stage, his life will no longer be the same. While experiencing the joy of this big news, he does not notice that the manhole cover on the road is open, falls into the sewer hole and dies. The real story of our film begins with the irony of the end of his life after the moment he was most waiting for in life arrived.

Opening his eyes in another form, Joe sees that he is going to the other world. But today is the most important day of his life and he should not die today, he finds a way to escape from there, but things do not go as he wants and he finds himself in the "previous world". The previous world is the place where souls are prepared for the world, where personalities are formed, and from there they are sent out into the world. I have to say that I really liked the portrayal of this scene. Both in terms of the subject (the role of determinism or free will in the formation of personality) and visually, the colors used (we see that blue and its tones are very dominant, this adds a deep but light effect to the atmosphere to be created, just like the soul) and the two-dimensional drawings resembling Picasso were quite impressive.

There's a scene I want to touch on here, where Joe takes 22 to a place where moments from his own life are shown to help him find something to inspire him with. Joe, who sees all Among the conditions for being sent to the world is the filling of badges given to spirits. The hardest part to complete in these badges is the "spark" part. Spark represents the spark within us, the work we are passionate about doing. In order for the souls to find their own spark, they are assigned guides who have lived life before and have been successful. Joe is mistaken for one of these guides, and he is enlisted with a troublemaker named 22 to inspire. 22 is a soul that has been there for thousands of years and has not found the spark of its passion in life, not wanting to go to earth. Seeing this, Joe decides to team up with 22. He will help 22 find his spark, and once the badge is complete, he will go to the world with that badge. While the plan sounds good, it's hard to execute because there's nothing left that 22 hasn't tried in his trial room (where they try things in the world) and nothing has convinced him to go out into the world. There's a scene I want to touch on here, where Joe takes 22 to a place where moments from his own life are shown to help him find something to inspire him with. Joe, who sees all the moments of failure here, says "my life is meaningless" and we will come back here.

When they realize that 22 can't find his spark by looking for it, they take an alternate path. 22 takes Joe into the gap between spiritual and physical perception (the moment when people feel like they're in another place where they're really immersed in something) like athletes, musicians, actors coming here when they're concentrating. In addition to these, there are also lost souls, lost souls who have become prisoners of their own anxieties and obsessions. And in fact, as Moonwind says, there is not much difference between lost souls and souls left in the moment. It is enjoyable to stay in the moment while doing what you are passionate about, but when this pleasure becomes obsessive, it brings you to the point of detachment from life.

Joe accidentally brings to 22 as he enters the portal that returns to his body in the hospital with the help of Moonwind (a traveler whose body is on earth and whose soul is astral traveling). Not only that, but then there's the 22 in the Joe's body, and Joe in the cat's body. After escaping from the hospital, the two try to find Moonwind again to fix this mess. In these scenes, we watch 22 discover life in Joe's body. 22 thinks that, contrary to what he thinks, the world is not so boring. He enjoys the experiences of eating and walking. There are two important scenes here, the first of which is that Joe’s student who we see at the very beginning of the movie, wants to give the trombone back to Joe (because he has 22 in his body). The girl tells 22 how music is actually a waste of time at school and that she doesn't want to do it anymore. 22 agrees with him because he already thinks the same about his education in the previous world. However, after the girl wants to play the trombone one last time, she sees how much she actually likes to play, which leads to a change in the girl's decision. 22 is confused, it surprises him that the girl who came here to quit and hates everything gives up quitting because she likes to play.

Second, the barbershop scene. Wanting to get Joe to attend his concert in the evening, the duo takes him to Joe's barbershop. But instead of Joe, who normally doesn't talk about anything other than jazz, the people there get along with 22 perfectly. In fact, at one point, the barber says to 22, "I'm happy to be able to talk to you about something other than jazz, man", so here we see how focused and committed to a single purpose Joe lives and throws everything else around him into the background. 22 asks the barber if he wants to be a barber or if he came to life to be a barber. Barber says he used to want to be a veterinarian, but after his daughter fell ill, he started cutting hair to make ends meet. 22 says it's a horrible thing, that he's stuck in the barbershop and he's unhappy. When Barber states that this is not true and that he is very happy and satisfied with his current life, 22 becomes confused in terms of what he knows about life.

Eventually, the two found Moonwind. But 22 had a change of heart: "I always thought it was a stupid thing. But look what I found, to be honest, I always thought there was a problem, maybe I'm not good enough to live, but you taught me to have a passion for life. Watching the sky can be my spark or walking. I am pretty good at walking." Not wanting to turn back when he is so close to finding his own spark, 22 escapes. Joe, who comes after 22, finds him, but it is too late because Terry (the treasurer of the other world) has found Joe and 22 and taken them to the previous world. There's only one change: the spark part of 22's badge, which hasn't been completed for thousands of years, has been filled and has received its ticket to go to the world. 22 is very surprised because he still doesn't know what his spark was. Joe gets angry with her and says it's because of his body, they argue and 22 throws the badge at Joe and disappears. Joe returns to the world in his own body with 22's badge. He arrives at the stage in the evening, regains his piano and has a magnificent show experience. His dream that he wanted the most has now come true.

At the end of the performance, when Joe asked the conducter what was next, she said: "We will come back tomorrow night and play again." Joe's face falls and he thinks, today is the day I've been waiting for all my life, but I thought I'd feel different. The woman then tells the striking story: "A young fish asked an old fish that he was trying to find the ocean. The old fish:’’ Is it the ocean, you are swimming in it right now.’’ The young fish replied: "Is this the ocean?" But that's water. What I want is the ocean."

In life, we all set limits for ourselves like Joe. When I accomplish this, my life will be perfect. We think that our lives will have meaning when we start university, when we graduate, when we start a job, when we get a promotion, but we may be wrong. Because Joe's life before he went on stage was not as meaningless as he thought. Perhaps being able to be happy or feel satisfied only when certain conditions are met is what throws us into the middle of meaninglessness and makes us think about what to do next.

Joe realizes that he is missing out on other things in life, and indeed life itself, because he is stuck in a single dream, and he thinks about 22. He decides that he must return there and give her the right to live. He finds her through Moonwind, but there's a problem. 22 is now a lost soul. Since he was unable to stay in the world and find his own purpose, he felt inadequate and worried. Joe finds him and heals him: "Are you ready? Come and live," Joe asks. 22: "I'm scared, Joe, I'm not good enough, and I didn't find my spark." Joe replied, "No, you found it, your spark is not your purpose, that last apartment will fill up when you are ready to come to live. If you ask me, You are pretty good at walking."

Realizing that life is more of a goal than a single goal, Joe sends 22 off to the world and is now ready to die. But Jerry (the spiritual being there) gives Joe a second chance as he took 22 to earth, who hasn't wanted to go to earth for thousands of years. On the way back to Earth, he asks Joe, "Well, how are you going to spend your life?" Joe responds, "I'm not sure what I want to do in life, but I know I'm going to enjoy every moment of my life."

As I mentioned at the beginning, it was a movie out of Disney's line. While the most important thing mentioned in other Disney movies is to follow the passions of their desires, in this movie, our spark, our desires, our dreams are the things that make us love life, yes, but apart from that, there is a life that we have with all the details big and small, with the moments we have achieved, failed, tried, given up or just walked just like that. The film shows us that each of these moments is precious, that we should enjoy it, and that it is meaningless to keep life waiting. It opens another window into the search for meaning in life. If you've never watched it, you might want to give it a shot.

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Melahat Kaya Karatay üniversitesi 1. sınıf psikoloji öğrencisiyim. Psikolojinin perspektifiyle okuduklarımı, izlediklerimi anlamlandırmayı seviyorum. İlgi alanlarım arasında sinema, edebiyat ve felsefe var. Bu konular üzerinde araştırma yapmaktan ve bunları paylaşmaktan çok keyif alıyorum