A musician has an accident, wakes up as a wandering soul in the afterlife, and must find his way back with the help of a stubborn infant soul.
Directed by Pete Docter and Kemp Powers
Written by Pete Docter, Mike Jones, Kemp Powers
Starring Jamie Foxx, Tina Fey, Graham Norton, Alice Braga,
Richard Ayoade, Phylicia Rashad, Rachel House,
Questlove, Angela Bassett, Donnell Rawlings
Oscar Nominations - Best Animated Film, Best Sound,
Best Original Score (Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross, Jon Batiste)
Soul is one of the films that was supposed to come out in the summer, but got taken off the calendar due to the pandemic. When Disney made the decision to release it on Disney+ in December, fans rejoiced. It took me all month to finally watch it, and it's easily Pixar's most profound movie. It's difficult to introduce kids to concepts like death, the afterlife, or an unfulfilled life. If anyone could do it, it was the geniuses at Pixar. While I still consider Onward to be their superior 2020 movie, Soul is an enjoyable, heartwarming, funny adventure.
Joe Gardner (Foxx) is a middle school band teacher who never got to have his shot at being a professional musician. When he finally lands the gig of a lifetime, he has an accident on his way home and ends up in a coma. His soul heads to the afterlife, where he freaks out and falls into a void, ending up in the place where souls are created and personalities are instilled. It's a really complex film disguised as a family comedy. Joe is determined to get back in his body, and to help him, he teams up with reluctant infant soul 22 (Fey), who gets to experience life for the first time. Along the way, Joe learns a valuable lesson about what parts of life are worth living.
Soul is going to be a firm favorite of many longtime Pixar fans. It never feels like just a kids movie, and the animation is the cleanest, most lifelike work that Pixar has ever done. It's nice to have gotten two great Pixar films that weren't sequels this year. I hope to see more original content from them in the near future.