Quarantine has presented us all with the opportunity for self introspection, and Pixar provides some very good starting points. Being the leader of comfort films for the past few decades, the studio has built quite the portfolio to dive into.
These films have become ever important in today’s age, as channeling our emotions is a great way to stay sane and learn about ourselves.
Emotional impact is the name of the game for Pixar, and though their films are primarily made for children, it’s undeniable how much there is to unpack for the older generations.
Growing up with these movies can shape how a person acts — I’m sure everyone reading this has that film they watched as a child — and odds are, it’s made or influenced by Pixar.
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Not only is Pixar known for being pioneers of animation technology, they are also a front-runner in creating compelling stories for all ages. The “Toy Story” franchise taught us lessons about friendship, humanism and growing up.
“Monsters Inc.” showed how appearances can be deceiving and gave kids early impressions of a work environment, as well as showing the importance of doing the right thing.
“Wall-E” (my personal favorite) has themes of hope, technology’s ambiguity and warns of greed, monopolies and of course, climate change.
These films are timeless, and they’re only the tip of the iceberg. As the studio has grown, the films never dip in quality, and each has incredible life lessons for everyone, not just the younger generations.
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As children nowadays grow up in the insanity of the past few years, Pixar provides breaks from tough times and yields some very important wisdom for how to conduct one’s self, as well as how to treat others. Two Pixar films provided light in the grim year that was 2020 — “Onward,” and “Soul”.
“Onward” was released a week prior to the University of Wisconsin’s shutdown, and was swept under the rug because of this unfortunate timing.
Those who saw it, however, witnessed a fantastic joyride with amazing themes of family — specifically brotherhood — and self-confidence. These themes became profoundly topical as the year progressed, since family became an important piece of a lot of people’s lives.
“Soul,” however, received a massive spotlight, and for good reason. It’s about the death of Joe Gardner, a band teacher with much larger aspirations.
Throughout the film, Gardner discovered much about himself and how he impacts those around him. It’s a mature, beautiful film about life, death, depression and happiness.
It’s an ambitious film, and one that seems to be geared towards an older demographic, yet provides a deep look into the meaning of life like never before.