Soul: A Heartwarming and Stirring Story

Soul strives to help us remember that life itself is a blessing, even when it doesn’t go as we planned.


Joe Gardner (voiced by Jamie Foxx) is a jazz teacher who is asked to obey his mother in taking a more stable job than his current one. Before he makes his mind, he’s offered a gig opposite a renowned jazz musician Dorothea Williams (voiced by Angela Bassett). Before he gets there, he dies, but his soul refuses to leave his body and move to ‘the great beyond’.


Hence he’s sent to ‘the great before’ where he gets to mentor 22 (voiced by Tina Fey). The job of a mentor is to prepare the souls to get to their body for the first time on the earth. 22 just doesn’t want to go to earth, and even a mentor like Muhammad Ali has failed to make her do so. She has even made Mother Teresa cry. The story is all about how Joe and 22 understand the purpose of their existence by getting to know each other.


Joe’s motives finally come full circle by the end of the movie, with him realizing that the best part of living isn’t chasing ambition or catching hold of a fleeting dream — it’s just living. With his renewed sense of self and the second chance he received, he states that “I’m Going To Live Every Minute Of It.”


Don’t let the flowery language above fool you to believe that this film is as perfect as many Disney-Pixar collabs I’ve seen before, because it’s not. There are flaws. Not all characters are treated as soulfully as Joe and 22. There could have been so much around Esther Chae’s character who considers herself a failure despite being a good bassist. Joe’s relationship with his mom deserved better treatment. These things leave a few loose ends which could’ve been avoided.


Jamie Foxx is a perfect match for Joe Gardner. It’s like even if this had been a live-action movie, Jamie would’ve made an ideal Joe. His voice gives the required texture to an already strikingly-written character. Tina Fey gets into 22’s soul with her whimsically sounding voice. She compliments the charm of her character. Angela Bassett provides the required thump to her character Dorothea Williams. The way she speaks highlights a lot about the aura her character carries around herself. Graham Norton as Moonwind is fun but deserved some great one-liners which were missing.


All said and done, Soul has got its soul at the right place! Christmas serves as the best season to watch films such as these. So I’d request you to get into your comfortable clothes, get a mason jar filled with the drink of your choice, snuggle in a soft-to-touch blanket and get lost in the world designed by Disney and Pixar.


⭐⭐⭐⭐☆ (4 Stars)