Movie Review: Soul


Credit: Disney Media

Soul features Joe, a music teacher and aspiring professional jazz musician.

What is the meaning of life? What is your purpose? The answers to these deep questions depend on you, and your values. The movie “Soul” provides its viewers with one universal, enlightened answer: Gratitude for life itself!
The recently released Disney Pixar animation “Soul” gets a laugh out of younger kids, yet has been surprisingly enjoyed even more by teenagers and adults. Although the movie is a PG-rated cartoon, its dialogue and animations provide a profound and sophisticated perspective on life. “Soul” uplifts spirits during the stress and difficulty of the pandemic, as it has created a sense of gratitude for many, giving them the realization to just be happy for simply being alive.
In the movie “Soul,” protagonist Joe Gardner’s dream is to present his love and talent—playing the piano—to the world. Joe is discontent with his current job as a middle school band teacher. Surprisingly, however, an opportunity to reach that dream eventually opens up, but Joe cannot seize it in time, and in consequence, ends up unconscious. As his body is unconscious, Joe’s soul escapes and roams around in a rich and lively dimension. Joe’s soul takes the audience through an extraordinary journey, as he meets other souls and encounters supernatural obstacles that he must overcome in order to get back to living.
The movie “Soul” has spread its positivity in many different ways. Personally, this movie has not only touched but has actually transformed my perspective on life. Before seeing the movie, I grew up having one single approach towards life. I was taught that my “purpose” was supposed to be chasing my dreams and interests, and prioritizing them over everything else. My main goal was to achieve that purpose. My old school, my friends and my surrounding environment encouraged and emphasized this idea, and therefore I blindly followed it.
A few weeks ago, a friend told me that this new PG cartoon animation transformed his perspective on life and that knowing me, it would change my outlook as well. Even though I didn’t believe that a children’s animated film could have such an impact, I still watched it. To my surprise, my friend was right.
The film used its powerful dialogue and visuals to re-shape my opinion on the true values of life. Life’s true purpose isn’t just about goals and dreams, but truly about the journey, you take while living. In my opinion, having ambition in life is still very important and should not be disregarded. But I also believe that enjoying the path you take is the key to gratitude. It’s not just reaching your goal or dream that’s important, but the act of getting there.
The small perks that life offers – maybe the breeze that you feel when you step outside or the connections that you make with other people – is what is important. Life is fragile and should not be wasted. Its beauty is one of a kind and should be enjoyed and taken advantage of before it is too late.
“Soul” does a great job shedding light on what’s really important, and especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, there could not be a greater time to uplift your spirit! I highly recommend watching this movie, you will be surprised with the effects this cartoon can have on your mindset.