As a studio Pixar have had an interesting journey into Hollywood. In the early days they couldn’t put a foot wrong – films like Toy Story, Cars, Finding Nemo and Monsters Inc became instant fan favourites while Wall-E and Up were described by critics as the kind of movies that would change animation forever.

However, things for changed for Pixar over the years – fans have been a little disappointed in films like Monsters University and Finding Dory while Lightyear and Elemental haven’t exactly set the box office alight.

Fans and critics alike have been waiting for Pixar to turn the tide and deliver something truly special and they may have just done with that with the truly beautiful and heart-warming Inside Out 2. This not only sees Pixar return to their past brilliance but is a must-see film for teenagers and parents alike.

Directed by Kelsey Mann (Party Central) Inside Out 2 is set a few years after the original film and finds young Riley (voiced by Kensington Tallman – Home Sweet Rome!) now a teenager. Along for the ride are also her original emotions – Joy (Amy Poehler – Parks And Recreation), Fear (Tony Hale – Toy Story 4), Anger (Lewis Black – Man Of The Year), Disgust (Liza Lapira – Fast & Furious) and Sadness (Phyllis Smith – The Office) who feel like they have everything under control.

However, that all ends when Riley wins a place to an exclusive ice hockey camp. As she prepares for the camp she realises that is the perfect opportunity to land on her dream team The Fire Hawks and feels that in order to do that she must impress the team’s star player Val (Lilimar – Hubie Halloween). She then feels even more pressure when her best friends tell her that they won’t be going to same High School as her.

With all this going on suddenly her emotions find themselves under stress when the ‘Puberty’ alarm goes off and suddenly all of Riley’s emotions seem to be intensified. And then to throw another spanner in the works new emotions, led by Anxiety (Maya Hawke – Stranger Things), arrive and simply take over.

There have been a lot of really good coming of age movies made over the years – films like Almost Famous and The Perks of Being A Wallflower spring to mind straight away – but very few of those films have ever used metaphors about puberty in the way that Inside Out 2 does. The screenplay here, written by Meg LaFauve (Captain Marvel) and Dave Holstein (Weeds), is absolutely phenomenal.

So why does this screenplay work so well? To be brutally honest it is because it doesn’t sugar-coat what a teenager is about to go through with their emotions and even points out that there is nothing wrong with somebody if they are suddenly going through an anxious state. This is perhaps one of the best films ever made that shows that anxiety is something that every person experiences – what matters is the way that the person leans to handle and control what they are going through.

The fact that LaFauve and Holstein have done this while creating this amazing ‘world’ inside Riley’s mind is amazing – the fact that they have been able capture all of that as well as a valuable life lesson inside a movie that is also entertaining just goes to show why this may well be one of the most important films ever made.

Not only is this the kind of movie that the whole family can go along to and watch on a fun night out this is also a film that will educates parents on what it is like being a teenager while also equipping kids and teenagers with some life skills that may well end up being very important for them during their High School years.

A lot of people comment these days that it feels like Hollywood has forgotten how to make memorable movies or even movies that will truly matter to people. Inside Out 2 is a reminder to everyone that there are still important movies being made and shows that Pixar have once again managed to create something truly magical and beautiful.

4.5/5 Stars