Throughout the years, Pixar has given us many surprises, but "soul" must be one of the biggest surprises yet to come. The topic of life and death isn't something normal people would like to tackle, but with" Soul" things took a different twist.
Our story starts with Joe Garderner(voiced by Jamie Fox ) falling into a drinage pipe and his spirit entering the great before( a place where souls gain their personality before leaving for earth), in order to get back to his still living body, he become the mentor of 22( an extremely senior soul who hasn't been able to leave the great before for centuries), together the duo set out to search their missing spark, discovering what it means to "live" in the process.
To be honest, “Soul" isn't that " not-kid suited" as most audience describes it. Although it's definitely not as easy going as Peter Dector's previous work " Inside out", but this is where Pixar’s magic kicks in. They use a simple, but direct approach on a topic no grown-up would ever talk to their children under normal circumstances” What gives your life meaning?" a problem that many people stress over nowadays. Sounds very abstract I know, but that’s what gives this movie its depth.
Our two lead characters, Joe and 22, represents the two opposites perspective of life, the first over enthusiastic (fixated on Jazz, seeing it as his only purpose in life) and the ladder extremely pessimistic (lost interest in life). It's through the constant t bickering and body switch between the two that they started to come to a balance, and this is where we get the most important sentence of the film:
"A spark isn’t a soul's purpose"
The whole point of Joe's adventure as a spirit (or "cat" later) is to find 22's missing spark, but, there’s really no need to look for it directly, the so called "Spark" already resides in us, just waiting for the right moment to wake up. For some of us, it may be a contest you never participated before,
Not to say pursuing your "Spark" is bad, but when you are indulged in it so much that you started to ignore the more important things around you, it may end up confining you instead. In the film's case, you become a "lost soul", destine to wander the spirit desert, obsessed with something that disconnects them from life until you fade to nothing. Kind of like "the fields of Asphodel" we see in ancient Greek mythology but with your memories and obsessions intact.
(I know that some of you may start to think if I'm speaking in Martian now, so let's put it in a simpler way.)
If you talk about your interests to your friends every day, eventually they would get bored and you will miss the chance to know who or what they really are. I suffered from a very similar problem during my first few years as a teenager, and let me tell you, it's not something I want to experience again. Since you can't blend in with the majority (or more direct, you neglect it on your own free will), your connection with the world around you fades as time flows. We can this during 22's conversation with Joe's barber, sometimes, all it takes is a" how's your life going" to help you anchor down in life.
"Live every moment of your life"
The world is full of possibilities, all we need to do is to look for them, by" living every moment" you don't necessarily need to understand everything in the world, you can still pick and choose the ones you want to spend time on and the ones you don't. but at least, learn about their existence. Take a rest on the road trip of life and look at the scenery around, you may your " soul" elevated to different world all together