Aneesh Chaganty

Movie #191 Up

In Uncategorized on April 25, 2011 at 2:22 AM

Movie #191 Up

(2009, US, d. Pete Docter)

Pixar can’t really go wrong in this Movie a Day Challenge. The most consistent production company of all time (granted they only have ten or a few more films), Up is just another leap in the right direction. Containing some darker, melodramatic themes as compared to their previous works, this film is about an elderly man named Carl who decides he has nothing left to lose. So he does the one thing he’s never been able to do: go on an adventure for his deceased wife, whose one dream in life was to take a trip to a certain spot in South America. I know most of us have seen the film, but for the few people who haven’t, I don’t want to spoil too much. Up is considered by many to be the best Pixar film ever made. Though I would disagree, the claim does have strong merit. The first animated film to be nominated for Best Picture at the Oscars, it’s a film with heart and soul, clever dialogue, and beautiful arcs. It does not cheat the audience to tears, but caresses them naturally. For proof of this, watch the first 8 minutes, one of the best montages in film history. The laughs come easy, especially for children, who will find a lot to gawk at in this colorful and adventurous ride through South America. Adults, however, can analyze this tormented character. Here is a man who has lost everything. His wife, his house, his livelihood, and his respect. Here is a man who at first comes off selfish, but is anything but that. More than anything, Up is a journey into the heart of this man – to discover what he loves and who he loves. It is a journey, aided by a young Boy Scout in a quest for a final badge on his vest, to rediscover that love. One of the most touching pictures in the last decade, don’t underestimate Up by its genre or target audience. It is as much of an adult film as it is a children’s one. But the best thing about it is that it doesn’t use sly, crude jokes to remind the audience it is for older people, too. It accomplishes this, rather, through character. And that is one rare feat for the animated film.

  1. “Beauty and the Beast” was the first to be nominated.

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