This is our quick review of “Inside Out Emotional Whirlwind” ride in Disney’s California Adventure Park. We’ll go over the history of the ride, the ride experience, eligibility for riders, location, and our personal take of the ride.
Location: This colorful attraction resides in the Inside Out Headquarters section of Pixar Pier, embodying the vibrant world of the Disney-Pixar film “Inside Out.”
Average Wait Times: Generally, the wait times are quite reasonable, ranging from 5 to 20 minutes. Even during peak seasons and weekends the wait doesn’t get very long.
Height Requirements: There are no specific height requirements, making it a family-friendly attraction.
Single Rider: Since the wait times are typically low, there’s no Single Rider option available.
Genie+ and Lightning Lane: This ride does not have Genie+ or Lightning Lane services, most likely due to its short wait times.
Rider Switch: Available for guests who need it, given the family-friendly nature of this attraction.
DAS (Disability Access Service): DAS is provided for eligible guests, offering a return time based on the current wait.
Flik’s Flyers: Before “Inside Out Emotional Whirlwind” graced Pixar Pier, its ride system was actually part of “Flik’s Flyers,” a family-friendly attraction situated in “a bug’s land.” This land, themed around the 1998 Disney-Pixar film “A Bug’s Life,” featured several attractions targeted at younger visitors. “Flik’s Flyers” was a gentle aerial carousel that had guests soaring in boxes and containers seemingly put together by Flik, the inventive ant protagonist of the movie.
Transition to Pixar Pier: As Disney looked to update and rejuvenate Disney California Adventure, “a bug’s land” was eventually closed in 2018 to make way for the new Marvel-themed land, Avengers Campus. With the closure, some attractions were permanently retired, but the essence of “Flik’s Flyers” found a new home. The ride was reimagined to fit within the world of the 2015 Pixar film “Inside Out.”
Concept and Design: “Inside Out” focuses on the emotions inside the mind of a young girl named Riley. Each emotion – Joy, Sadness, Anger, Disgust, and Fear – is personified, leading to a colorful and imaginative movie setting. Translating this into a theme park attraction led to “Inside Out Emotional Whirlwind.” The ride concept remains an aerial carousel, but instead of boxes and tins, guests now float in Memory Movers, inspired by the orbs that store Riley’s memories in the film.
Opening: In 2019, the ride officially opened to the public, completing the retheming of the Pixar Pier area. This vibrant addition not only resonated with fans of the movie but also introduced a new generation of park goers to the colorful world of “Inside Out.”
In its transformation from “Flik’s Flyers” to “Inside Out Emotional Whirlwind,” the ride has effectively showcased how Disney often intertwines innovation with nostalgia, providing fresh experiences while paying homage to park history.
It’s a spinning attraction where guests board one of eight Memory Movers, each representing a different emotion from the film.
The Queue: The queue for the “Inside Out Emotional Whirlwind” is a vibrant and whimsical representation of Riley’s mind, with the central theme being her emotions. As you navigate through the line, you’ll notice giant Memory Orbs which illuminate the pathway, each one reflecting a specific color associated with the movie’s five core emotions: Joy (yellow), Sadness (blue), Anger (red), Disgust (green), and Fear (purple). Colorful “thought bubbles” float overhead, adding another layer of immersion. The décor also includes statues and graphics of the five emotions at their ‘workstations’, and if you pay close attention, you’ll catch snippets of their conversations from the movie, creating a feeling of being inside Riley’s head.
The Ride: The “Inside Out Emotional Whirlwind” is essentially a whimsical spinning ride. Once you’ve made your way through the queue, you’ll be ushered into one of the 8 Memory Movers, which are inspired by the Memory Orbs from the movie. As the ride takes off, it starts to rotate and elevate, offering a panoramic view of Pixar Pier, making it not just an attraction, but also a great vantage point.
Music: The soundtrack for the ride is an integral part of the experience. As the ride spins, you’re treated to iconic musical scores from the “Inside Out” movie, which might evoke some feelings of nostalgia for fans of the film. Michael Giacchino’s unforgettable score from the movie is prominently featured. Each emotion has its own musical theme, so you might hear the whimsical and lively tunes associated with Joy or the slower, more somber sounds of Sadness. The synchronization of the music with the spinning motion adds a rhythm to the ride and completes the immersion.
Overall: The “Inside Out Emotional Whirlwind” ride, while relatively short, is a delightful experience, particularly for younger guests and fans of the film. The combination of the colorful visuals, iconic music, and the sensation of flying make it a unique and heartwarming experience.
Best Times to Ride
Given the usually short wait times, you can enjoy this attraction at any time. However, riding it at night brings a special charm, with the glowing lights enhancing the colorful experience.
Inside Out Emotional Whirlwind is a joyful and visually stunning ride. I was immediately drawn to its colorful aesthetics and the delightful theming that perfectly encapsulates the emotions from “Inside Out.” Riding it, I felt a sense of childlike wonder and nostalgia. It’s a gentle ride that can be enjoyed by all ages, making it an excellent choice for families or those looking for a calming break from more thrilling attractions.
Inside Out Emotional Whirlwind is a delightful tribute to the creative and emotional journey presented in “Inside Out.” While it may not be the most thrilling or complex attraction in the park, its charm lies in its simplicity, beauty, and heartwarming connection to a beloved film. Whether you’re a fan of “Inside Out” or simply in the mood for a gentle and uplifting ride, this whimsical whirlwind offers a uniquely emotional and satisfying experience. Riding it made me feel connected to my inner child, appreciating the colorful simplicity of joy, and reminding me why Disney’s ability to stir emotions remains unparalleled.
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The Final Word
"Inside Out Emotional Whirlwind" is a delightful family attraction. Inspired by the 2015 Pixar film "Inside Out," the ride remains one of our favorites to take the kids on. This aerial carousel, with its colorful design and whimsical soundtrack, offers a gentle and immersive experience.