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This stands out as a rare gem among sequels – and is a welcome return to form for Pixar.

It offers a storyline that feels like a natural and seamless continuation of the original –

rather than a forced attempt to cash in on its success.

The film resumes with Riley (Kensington Tallman), now a teenager, navigating the turbulent waters of adolescence – a phase notorious for its emotional upheaval.

Joy (Amy Poehler), Sadness (Phyllis Smith), Anger (Lewis Black), Fear (Tony Hale) and Disgust (Liza Lapira) are back in Riley’s ‘mind headquarters’ – with their teamwork becoming finely-tuned over the years. However, their stability is disrupted by the arrival of new emotions, including Anxiety (Maya Hawke) and its companions.

What makes this follow-up remarkable is its authentic depiction of the complex emotive landscape of teenage years. The introduction of Anxiety is timely and essential, reflecting the real-life struggles faced by many adolescents today. I can only imagine how much pressure there is on them with things such as social media thrown into the mix. The film skilfully explores how these new and intense interactions impact Riley – adding depth to Pixar’s narrative that has been sorely missing from some of their recent efforts.

As someone with a teenager in my life dealing with their own emotional challenges, I found the movie both entertaining and profoundly poignant. It offers a relatable and insightful look into the emotional chaos that often accompanies adolescence.

The movie strikes a perfect balance between delivering a powerful message and maintaining Disney’s light-hearted, whimsical charm – referring to old-school Disney, of course.

Unlike a lot of their recent productions, this never comes across as ‘preachy’. At 96 minutes, the film’s runtime is ideal, helping to keep younger viewers engaged throughout. My five-year-old son, who usually struggles to sit through a whole movie, was captivated from start-to-finish – a testament to the film’s engaging quality. Inside Out 2 had us both laughing and shedding a few tears – rather fitting for a movie centred around mixed emotions.

For anyone navigating the rollercoaster of adolescence, or supporting someone who is, this film is a must-watch. Though saying that, there’s something here for literally anyone who enjoys classic Disney.

If you liked the first film, there’s absolutely no reason you wouldn’t enjoy this one too – because this is pretty much on par with that highly-acclaimed movie.

Arguably Pixar’s best sequel in more than a decade.


ESP Rating: 4/5


Mike Clarke

Showcase Cinema De Lux Peterborough, Out Now

Voice Cast: Amy Poehler, Maya Hawke, Kensington Tallman, Liza Lapira, Tony Hale, Lewis Black, Phyllis Smith, Diane Lane, Kyle Maclachlan & Paul Walter Hauser

Running Time: 1 Hr 36 Mins

Director: Kelsey Mann


Go to for all the latest film information & showtimes at Peterborough’s Showcase Cinema De Lux

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