Inside Out on Creativity!

The animation movie “Inside Out”, Disney Pixar, was sheer genius, Ideation on the working of the mind of a little girl Riley! The characters in the film are not the girl or her friends, but her five emotions: Joy (the heroine), Sadness (the villainous turning heroine), Anger, Fear and Disgust. These emotions fight it out within her mind while the girl’s mental state is determined by the winning emotion. 

Joy dominates in the early years of the child Riley, keeping Sadness away from the remote control panel. Anything Sadness touches turns sad, like the Midas touch turned things to gold!!! The new memories are stored at the end of each day. But the ‘core’ memories play a crucial role in the development of personality. Some of these core memories that develop personality are ‘family’, ‘friendship’ and ‘honesty’. 

The genius of the film, the use of Sadness to evoke love, hope, family to rejuvenate oneself, was mind blowing! Sadness or ‘ग़म’ (उर्दू-Urdu) is an emotion that I have not appreciated in life! Always spent time making a joke of my husband (a poet by inclination!) and his penchant for ‘ग़म’! Have heard that ‘ग़म ‘ inspires creativity, literary writing, especially poetry in उर्दू-Urdu !! Wow! OOOhh! But to think ‘ग़म’ Sadness from the past brings memories of when your family and friends comforted you! That ‘ग़म’ could pull you back from the brink and bring back Joy, was sheer genius and a revelation!

The film graphically depicts how every dark emotion like Anger, Fear and disgust, characters in the film, could end up destroying the ‘core’ memories and ‘core’ values such as friendship and family. Yes, Anger can destroy friendship! As you grow up the collapse of the ‘family’ due to Sadness, leads to loss of imagination and imaginary friends of your childhood. ‘Disgust’ is an useful emotion that makes you cautious and can save you from disaster.

It was an emotionally draining film, but inspired creativity or at least respect for creativity! Though I do not fully buy into the idea that ‘ग़म’ is essential for creativity! The film was, however, low on entertainment, visuals and sheer fun especially for the kids, who were in hoards in the theater! Frankly, at half time, we were absolutely stunned and taken aback. But the ‘intellectual’ is us prevailed and we loved it! Food for thought! Would recommend all of you reading this post to watch Inside Out and of course comment on my blog (OOOhh)! Incidentally this last is a substitute for the emotion ‘Wink’ as I do not see emoticons on this blogspot! 

5 thoughts on “Inside Out on Creativity!

  1. 🙂 🙂 Sadness is only one of the emotions that can inspire creative outpourings. Joy, anger and even disgust can lead to creative outputs. I am not too sure about fear though. Those who wrote against certain aspects of society may be disgust as well as the fear that if one does not resist, those aspects would persist and grow. Anyway, its difficult to figure out what kicks-in creativity. Many people have spoken about the so-called 'muse'! 🙂 Is muse always a physical entity or it can take the form of a mix of emotions that the movie talks about.For me the most interesting part of the story was that all emotions co-exist not always peacefully though. What triggers or curtails the change in the composition is the most critical thing to figure out!


  2. Nice summary Jeemol. Inspires me to watch the movie!In addition to human emotions (internal factors), the environment (external factor) also plays a role in sparking creativity. Further, complex/very difficult or resource crunch situations are also likely to ignite creativity in humans.


  3. Glad you liked the film, I was going to recommend it to you guys. I liked how sadness ultimately played a part in her growth but I don't know why they had to made the Sad emotion chubby and unattractive. People have written many blogposts for and against that too!


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