By Kat King
Los Angeles, CA (The Hollywood Times) 5/25/20 – Refreshing, heartfelt and touching. Everything from the score to the foley of this long-needed short simply delights, “OUT” gives us the heart-warming vision of acceptance and love we all really need right now. There’s also the pacing, which maintains a punchy, upbeat pace throughout to keep you feeling light and drops back at just the right moment to let you really breathe. And I have to talk about the art style of the animation itself for a minute. WOW. Talk about beautiful, the saturated pastels really pop. You feel really good, right? and you should. That’s the whole point.
But let’s get down to the real beauty of this: its honesty. It’s hard to come out if you’re just not sure they’ll accept you. It’s not easy. I never came out, per se. My mom discovered the journal I kept with the first girlfriend I had my freshman year (Ashley).
Character-building a short story is really challenging. I have ADHD, so short-form storytelling has always appealed to me most. It was really fun to be able to get to know Greg’s mom, that they gave us a snapshot of her character, that she’s likeable. But she’s also honest. And she shows us how to show acceptance, even when we’re also feeling hurt in some way. For Greg’s mom, it was really about him moving away in the end, and not about whether he’s gay. And that helps me to respect Pixar that. Much. more.
I really wish something like this had been around when I was younger, so that parents who didn’t know really how to respond could have some kind of blueprint for communication. If only there had been more representation, more acceptance before. But here we are, and Pixar created something we can pass on.
And now, for the star of the show, Jim. The loyal pupper doggo we always knew was going to do whatever he could to protect his person, Jim. He reminds us of the love and loyalty of our furbaby. I love how elated he is toward the end.
It was an especially nice touch seeing Greg’s dad hug Manuel. I’m not the first one to bang the gong against toxic masculinity, so I won’t beat a dead horse any deader. But it was necessary. There has always been a need to see fathers accept and embrace their gay sons without prejudice. I can’t remember the last scene from a movie or series (especially not from the mainstream) that actually showed this, so when I say it’s refreshing, I mean it’s literally a breath of fresh air.
The message is clear: there’s never been a more poignant time for messages of love in media and entertainment right now. Pixar understands the need for authentic representation of LGBTQIA+ stories. People need to understand the fear of coming out that that still very much exists. It hasn’t gone away. We haven’t come that far. If we had, we wouldn’t still be hearing about hate crimes against our brothers and sisters. Our family.
I’ve got to be honest. Part of me watched this and cried because I remembered what I went through with my family, and with my mother especially. I wish it had gone this way. But it didn’t. It just didn’t. Am I bitter? No. All I want is for every gay boy and girl to find the same unconditional love and acceptance from their parents that Greg does in his. Suffice it to say, Pixar’s “OUT” gives us the heart-warming vision of acceptance & love we all really need right now.