Movie Review: Inside Out 2 delivers heartwarming lessons for all ages

Movie Review: Inside Out 2 delivers heartwarming lessons for all ages

Back in 2015, one of my favorite modern Disney movies was released: Inside Out.

The story follows a character named Riley who just moved from Minnesota to San Francisco. Instead of following the journey of this pre-teen from an “outside” perspective, the movie focuses on five characters inside Riley’s head: Joy, Fear, Disgust, Anger, and Sadness.

At the end of the movie, we learn that our memories and experiences can be categorized by several emotions. Moreover, every single emotion we have matters—with a focus on how Sadness and Joy can co-exist.

In the middle of last month, Inside Out 2 hit the big screen and naturally, I had to watch. I went into the theater expecting to be entertained, but my hopes weren’t sky high as sequels in general are usually sub-par to the original. To my delight, Inside Out 2 was on par with the first one and perhaps even better. With a mixture of wit, imagination, and a lesson on the importance of balancing emotions, the movie has it all.

The sequel picks up on Riley as she hits puberty. The largest change is the addition of four new emotions: Anxiety, Embarrassment, Envy, and Ennui (boredom).

While I was in the theater, I had the privilege of observing the laughter and engagement of both the three-year-old sitting to the left of me and the grown father on my right. The movie did a wonderful job of exploring the complexities of anxiety and how we often become our own worst bullies.

Additionally, a new element to Riley’s brain was the “Sense of Self” and the numerous core beliefs that shaped how Riley viewed herself and how she interacted with the world around her. Despite being set in the mind of a thirteen-year-old girl, Inside Out 2 delivers a heartwarming lesson on emotional intelligence.

If you haven’t had the pleasure of watching either movie or are looking for some feel good entertainment this summer, add them to your watch-list. If you’re ten, fifty, or beyond, there’s something in this movie for every age.


Elisabeth Dellit is an 12th Grader at Jesuit High School. She enjoys reading, writing creative stories, baking/cooking and participating in her school’s drama program.