Review on Disney Movie Soul

What happens before we are born and after we die? Where does everyone get their personalities? Do parents play a part or do they show up on their own? Disney’s brand new movie, “Soul”, sought out to answer these questions.

“Soul” begins with the death of its own main character, Joe Gardener, played by Jamie Foxx. He is a middle school music teacher with the dreams of becoming a famous jazz musician. After a successful audition with a jazz band, he steps out into the street without paying attention to the road in front of him, and falls to his death.

Though this is not the expected start to a kid’s movie, Joe’s death was the event that started the journey of this movie. This film shows the reality of us being mortal and not everything is a fairytale. It is a fun way to give people an idea of what life is like before and after life on earth.

Before he dies, Joe gets an opportunity to play with the jazz musician Dorothea Williams, played by Angela Bassett. Working for this his whole life, Joe and the audience, including myself, were not pleased with the plot twist of him suddenly dying.

We all know this is not how the story ends, though. Joe ends up in a black void on a conveyor belt that is leading to the “great beyond.” As most people would be, Joe is too sacred to die without his dreams being fulfilled. Taking action, he jumps off the conveyor belt, and lands in a new realm called the “great before,” an ethereal and cute world that has baby-like and happy souls being prepared to go to earth.

The concept of life-after-death can be overwhelming for some viewers. However, the team does a very great job of making the animations of the souls in the Great Before cute with big eyes and tiny, ghost-like bodies. These cute souls are creating their personalities before they go down to earth. With the help of mentors who previously died, the souls find their “spark” to be able to get a pass to earth.

Joe’s soul is mistakenly given the mentor job and is paired with a “soul-mate,” No. 22, who is played by Tina Fey. No. 22 is a misfit who can’t seem to understand the idea of wanting a life. She has been through countless mentors- not even Mother Teresa was able to help her. But when Joe explains his problems to 22, she helps him find a loophole that lands both of them on earth- but not in the way they had hoped.

22 is being dragged along in a world she obviously does not want to be in, and frankly is in a pretty selfish mission for Joe. While trying to fix their mess, 22 realizes that being alive isn’t as bad as she imagined. This conveys a message, not so much to kids, but towards adults who wished they’d “never been born” that life is precious and that it should be appreciated.

The sacrifices made by Joe later in the movie are inspiring. Without giving it away, Joe and 22 both get to live their desired life, whether they wanted it from the start or not.

“Soul” is an uplifting, feel-good movie about a cute idea of what the before and after life are like. This movie will leave both young and old audiences imagining what their own souls are made out of.