Anthony's Film Review
Exciting and heartwarming, Up is certainly one of Pixar's best...
What can I say about Pixar's Up? Well, it definitely lives up to its title. It's an uplifting movie that soars to great heights (all three puns intended). At this point, I think we can say that Pixar has little chance of failing. Up is the studio's tenth full-length animated feature and manages to continue the high-quality charm that characterizes most of the previous nine films from 1995's Toy Story to 2008's WALL-E. If you want to see Up just because Pixar's logo is stamped on its poster, then you won't be disappointed by your decision.
Up features two main characters separated by two generations. Carl Fredricksen (Edward Asner) is a widowed man who lives in an house he shared with his late wife, Ellie, for years. The first five minutes of the movie illustrates his life from childhood to the present. It's effective in presenting him as a gentle character. The other character is a boy named Russell (Jordan Nagai), a wilderness explorer who comes to Carl's home to earn one final badge for helping an elderly person. This character is likable, too, simply because he's as curious as any other kid you might know.
Carl ties thousands of balloons to his house in order to fly to South America, a place he and Ellie never got around to seeing together. But Russell unexpectedly shows up on Carl's porch while the house is in midair. Now the adventure involves the old man and the young boy. One thing I liked about the interactions between these two characters is how the movie stayed away from intergenerational humor. They could have went for cheap gags about Carl and Russell not understanding each other's lifestyles. Instead, the story features the two as equally curious and brave adventurers. I didn't expect that.
The story continues with a variety of situations and characters. Carl and Russell meet a big colorful bird, a dog with a talking collar, and an old explorer named Charles Muntz (Christopher Plummer). This is where the other type of story comes into play: the perilous adventure. There is action and suspense that is not too terrifying but still quite exciting. At times, the film switches from the heartwarming character story to this action plot. Other times, the two are occurring simultaneously. Thankfully, the film still holds together.
I will admit that Up was predictable all the way through. I gave 10 out of 10 stars to some earlier Pixar films because they delivered very clever surprises. I didn't get that with Up, but I'm not going to factor that into my rating. By this time, we all know what makes Pixar's films great. For this movie, I'm not concerned about whether it can provide original twists. All I care about is that it meets Pixar's trademark high standard. Up certainly does that and, therefore, is a 10/10 in my book.
For more information about Up, visit the Internet Movie Database.