Pixar has been creating animated movies for the entire family for nearly 25 years. They have entertained, captured hearts, and made us think with each new film. Disney Pixar’s Soul is the next film to grace our screens and it will debut in November of 2020.
It follows the story of Joe Gardner (Jamie Foxx), a middle school band teacher based in New York who expected something a bit different from his life. In the middle of a life-changing day, Joe gets into an accident. Upon entering the “Great Before,” Joe meets one of the new souls, 22 (Tina Fey), who is prepping to start her earthly life. They must team up so that he can return his soul to Earth before his body dies. Every good Pixar movie starts with an unexpected pair who teach each other a little about life along the way. This hilarious duo will surely be no different.
The man behind the magic, Pete Doctor, the writer/director for this film, also played a role in creating Pixar’s Inside Out. The similarities between the two films are both visual and emotional. The animation is beautiful and the colors are breathtakingly vibrant, as usual for the company. The jazz music heard throughout the soundtrack will be toe-tappingly sweet. And that all too familiar fuzzy feeling you get from watching a movie like this, can definitely be felt.
Dana Murray, the producer of the film, explains the inspiration behind the story in an interview with Imagine Games Network: “It really started when Pete’s son was born and seconds after he was in the world he looked at him and he was already there…like who he was and his personality and so I think that was the ultimate question of, how does that happen?”
Genre: Action & Adventure, Animation, Kids & Family
Pixar specializes in keeping the colors bright and the pictures moving to engage their vast audience. Soul will be a movie for the whole family to enjoy. Just from the trailer, we see its potential to make just about everybody who has got a funny bone giggle. Similarly to Pixar‘s Onward, this film will be taking a bit of a thoughtful tone as it discusses life’s bigger questions while managing to keep the story light and approachable for kids.
What we learned:
Pixar’s animating skills get more and more impressive with each new film. The trailer showcased some of its beautiful animation work and its undeniable addition to the storytelling. They have spectacularly created a depiction of the ethereal cosmic realm. Similar to Pixar’s Inside Out, a film adored for its vibrantly crafted animation, multiple stylized animating styles exist throughout the movie. As Joe’s soul falls down to the “Great Before”, his look changes through different stylized animations to show his progression and journey into a different world.
In the trailer, Joe’s soul watches the story of his life unfold. The New York Times so poignantly states that Pete Doctor has a way of making “emotionally mature” Pixar content with an “It’s a Wonderful Life” feel. After viewing the trailer, we could not agree more. It is a battle between optimism and cynicism when it comes to the movie’s two main characters.
What we loved:
The soundtrack for this film is going to be ridiculously good. Joe Gardner’s love for jazz will likely fill this movie to the brim with smooth jazz tunes. Since Soul is based around Joe’s passion or at times lack thereof for this style of music, Pixar brought in the best of the best to create the soundtrack. According to Consequence of Sound, band members of the industrial rock band “Nine Inch Nails” Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross have collaborated to create the score for the film. Additionally, famous artist Jon Batiste wrote some original jazz pieces for the film.
The sound editing for every Pixar movie is incredibly impressive. Creating the perfect sound for an action that does not exist in the real world is Pixar’s specialty and they show off in this trailer.
Classic physical comedy is a must-have of the children’s movie genre, and Pixar‘s Soul does not disappoint. When Joe discovers that there are no physical senses in the “Great Before” he realizes his inability to smell or eat pizza. When he puts the pizza in his mouth it pops straight out of his bottom with the perfectly hilarious “pop” sound. 22 goes even further to prove his inability to feel by slapping Joe in the face over and over. The giggles have already begun over this story.
Characters and who plays them:
From just over 2 minutes of content, we can see that the voice casting for this film is perfect.
Joe Gardner is the jazz-loving band teacher whom we already love. It takes a special kind of person to be a middle school teacher and he deserves some recognition. Joe’s soul, the lovable little blue guy, takes the audience through this epic tale while Jamie Foxx brings the character to life. Foxx spoke out on his Instagram about what the role meant to him. In an interview with IGN, Pete Doctor described the character as buoyant. He complimented Foxx’s ability to embody this character well.
22, the new infant soul in training, a small floating blue blob with way less style than Joe, is voiced by comedian Tina Fey. 22 must find her passion before beginning her life as a human and Joe intends to help her. She will be his spunky sidekick who teaches him the rules of the cosmic world. Her combination of quick wit and physical humor will definitely keep audiences laughing.
If you listen carefully, audiences will also hear the recognizable voices of stars like Phylicia Rashad as Joe’s mother, Daveed Diggs and Quest Love from The Roots. This star-studded cast will undoubtedly create a new Pixar favorite.
Some of the most important themes of the movie are questions that Tina Fey’s, 22, asks. Due to her disinterest in being a human, the cute little character poses some pretty big existential questions for a children’s movie. In the trailer she asks Joe, “Is all this living really worth dying for?” We sure hope there is restoration in Joe’s zeal for life after convincing 22 about the goodness of life. Joe questions 22, “What do you want to be remembered for?” to which she has a silly reply. This film, in true Pixar style, will be both uplifting and thought-provoking.
After watching the trailer, here’s what we are wondering: Will Joe make it back to the human world to live out his dream? Will 22 decide she wants to make the trek from the “Great Before” to the human realm? And, of course, as we must ask before each Disney film, how much are we going to cry?
The movie rating has not been announced yet, due to the release date being pushed from June to November. To find out more of what fans and critics are saying as the movie gets closer, check out the movie’s Rotten Tomatoes page. However, it is likely to follow suit with other Pixar films like it. The creators of Soul are responsible for the creation of Coco, Up and Inside Out, which means it will likely share the same PG rating. We are sure to find plenty of humor for the entire family from these larger-than-life characters.
The film’s original release date was June of 2020, but Pixar shifted the premiere date to November 20th, 2020. As CinemaBlend so kindly points out, the premiere weekend is significant to Pixar history. The original Toy Story celebrates its 25th birthday in November of this year and Pete Doctor, Soul’s director, played a huge role in the creation of Buzz and Woody’s story too.
This has been the scoop on Pixar’s new trailer for their upcoming film, Soul. Watch the trailer and eagerly anticipate the premiere of this new animated masterpiece along with us. Don’t forget to get the scoop on these things too:
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