Movie Review: Up

Starring the voices of Ed Asner and Christopher Plummer

Rated PG

Total Running Time: 96 minutes

Few non-animated movies have as much heart as this movie does.  As did Wall-E before it, Up harnessed the emotions in me that make me feel damn good once I turn the TV off. 

Many folks may not be interested in seeing animated movies as the stigma might be that they’re “cartoons” or “they’re for kids”.  Hell… if half the adults in this world had the same values portrayed in movies like Up… humankind would have a much better track record.

Up starts pretty slow… but this slow time allows the main character to be built.  In a period of about 15 minutes, we see Carl Fredricksen go from a small child to a tired old man.  Up effortlessly portrays in this 15 minutes how quickly life can go by and if we’re not careful, we may not enjoy them as much as we could have.  Carl and his wife share an incredible love for adventure and from the moment they met each other as kids… they vowed to one day make it to Paradise Falls in South America: the epitome of their adventurer dreams.  Unfortunately, life gets in the way.  Despite numerous efforts to save money to go… they have to dip into their savings time and time again to help pay for things and before they realize it… they’re too old.  Then, in a blink of an eye… she’s gone.

Up to this point, Up doesn’t seem to me like it’s going to be that great of a movie.  I’m an emotional person and tears were welling up in my eyes as I went, “What the freak?  I thought this was going to be funny!”

Well… I was fortunately correct in my assumption as Up gradually gets to the moving and accomplishes what it was set out to do… and that’s “put a happy feeling in your tummy”.

At the final moments before Carl is forced into a retirement community, he rips the only home he’s ever known from its foundations aided from about a million helium filled balloons.  His destination:  Paradise Falls… to fulfill the lifelong dream he and his late wife had shared for so long.

With the surprise addition of a pudgy kid named Russell to his floating, runaway house, Mr. Fredricksen is forced to realize it’s never to late in life to start a new adventure and the fact that age is just a number… OLD PEOPLE CAN HAVE FUN TOO DAMMIT!!

I loved this movie.  Last year when Wall-E wasn’t nominated for “Best Picture” (although it won “Best Animated Movie”) I was a little put out because I think that animated movies get pigeon-holed a little.  The message that a lot of these animated movies portray are the same values that movies like “A Wonderful Life” did back when it won Best Picture back in ­­­1947.  Now movies, actresses and actors that win revolve around films portraying violence, murder, hatred and the like.  When is it going to be time to give movies like Up the credit it deserves?

By gosh… let’s give the award to a movie that depresses the poop out of you rather than a feel good movie like this one.

Gimme a break.

So… In the spirit of Thanksgiving… I give Up FIVE out of FIVE turkeys with tan lines:

I wouldn’t recommend renting this movie… I would recommend buying it.


3 responses to “Movie Review: Up

  1. Great review. Absolutely genius moviemaking in every aspect.

  2. River and I loved that movie, too. I especially loved the fight scene. One of the best fight scenes I’ve ever seen. Dentures are a dangerous weapon.

  3. Various of folks blog about this subject but you wrote down some true words.

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