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Up (2009)

July 6, 2009

10/10 New Leases on Life

I need to get over this notion I have that Pixar movies are just for kids, because this bit of greatness is currently the front-runner for best movie of 2009. Man, kids always know what’s up.

Up is about an old man whose wife passes away, thus prompting him to attach a bagillion balloons onto his house and fly away to South America with a neighborhood boyscout to fulfill he and his wife’s lifelong dream of following in their hero’s footsteps.

Grief sure takes many strange forms.

After being completely surprised by how much I liked Pixar’s last movie, Wall-E, last year, I was pretty excited to see this. But for some reason there was still a voice in the back of my head telling me, “Come on, Aiden. You should be seeing this at your eight-year-old cousin’s birthday party.” I’m glad I didn’t give in to my doubts and I’m proud to say that the said voices in my head have been shut up for good.

I don’t think I’ve come out of a movie feeling so utterly great about myself and everything else on planet Earth since watching It’s A Wonderful Life at Christmas like I do every year. Up is a beautiful movie both visually and emotionally that really tugs on the audience’s heartstrings without being sappy or childish whatsoever.

You wouldn’t know it from the trailers, but this movie brings up a lot of mature and heavy issues that are pretty atypical for animated movies of any kind, except for Bambi of course…damn deer hunters. My good buddy Fred and I were both unabashedly tearing up at numerous times throughout this movie. It doesn’t help that we’re softies for this kind of thing, but we couldn’t help it. From the characters to the story, the whole thing is so genuine and heartfelt on such a empathetic level that the waterworks are just flat out inevitable.

But it’s not a sob-fest. It’s just about life, and life can be freakin’ tough. Am I right?

Up is also absolutely hilarious. Even though the humor is very different, I found myself laughing harder and more often at this movie than I did at The Hangover a couple weeks ago. I was literally howling in a theater filled with four people, including Fred and I, and I couldn’t stop. There are a ton of great running gags that don’t get old and I’m sure that if I went back and saw this again I’d still laugh my ass off. Good comic timing and consistently funny writing is something to be admired and appreciated whether it’s animated or real life.

The story is great, the characters are great, the script is great, the animation is great, the voice acting is great…and the credits were great. Sure, why not.

Look, instead of ranting about how fantastic this movie is, I’m going to wrap this up by just telling you to silence that “I’m-too-adult-for-this-kiddie-crap!” voice in your head and go see Up. There’s nothing better out there right now. Even if you didn’t like Wall-E because there wasn’t enough talking, don’t let that stop you from seeing this. I don’t know how Pixar keeps doing it, but they’ve got a perfect track record and this is one more truly impressive notch that’s been added to their belt.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. Fred permalink
    July 7, 2009 6:09 pm

    I built you this tent!

    • Aiden R permalink*
      July 7, 2009 7:35 pm

      Hahaha. Fred, you crack me up, good buddy.


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