Thursday, June 25, 2009

Movie Review: UP

Tonight we went and saw Pixar's newest movie, "UP" in 3D for our date night.
Synopsis: A young Carl Fredrickson meets a young adventure spirited girl named Ellie. They both dream of going to a Lost Land in South America. 50+ years later, Ellie has died. By tying thousands of balloon to his home, 78-year-old Carl Fredricksen sets out to fulfill his lifelong dream and promise to Elle - to go to Paradise Falls. Right after lifting off, however, he learns he isn't alone on his journey. Russel, an 8 year old Wilderness Explorer, has inadvertently become a stowaway on the trip. Together, they embark in an adventure, where they encounter talking dogs, an evil villain and a rare bird named Kevin.

Overall I really enjoyed it. It was an exciting, fun, hilarious, touching and heartfelt adventure beautifully crafted and told with wit and depth. It was one of the most poignant, and also one of the saddest [kids] movies I have ever seen (yes, I - the girl who never sheds tears, even for sappy movies, actually cried a few times!). It's is a very metaphorical and personal story about unfulfilled dreams, obsession, second childhoods, and the true meaning of "adventure." - which had me laughing and crying - excited & holding my breath - all within an fun-filled 96 minutes of peril & adventure.

The beginning of this movie was very strong and very powerful. I really loved how beautifully they portrayed the relationship between Carl and Ellie. She was lively, spunky, talkative & rambunctious... while he was quiet, reserved, and contemplative.... they balanced each other out perfectly! The quiet glance through their life together was not only sweetly beautiful, but also emotionally stirring. (this is when I had the tears flowing down my face.) I loved how as you watched the years pass by, you could see their deep love for one another just radiating from them. Through it all - their ups & downs, joys & sorrows (like, not being able to have a child) - It as evident how much they loved, cherished, & adored each other. ~ I was very touched & impressed.

One thing B was disappointed about **spoiler alert** was how Carl & Ellie's childhood hero (explorer, Charles Muntz) was turned into the villain. However, upon discussion, there were a few things that stood out to me....
  1. "Heroes are not always how they are perceived to be" - What we see from the outward appearance, may not always portray how/what a person actually lives, acts, thinks, believes etc. - this could be said of any actor, celeb, author or really anyone who has been placed in the limelight.
  2. Carl & Ellie idolized Muntz. The word "idol" is defined as: One that is adored, often blindly or excessively. The only thing we should excessively adore is the Lord. Anything else is setting us up for disappointment.
  3. This whole thing could also bring on an awesome discussion on anger. Muntz was a big time explorer hero (think Indiana Jones) who was doubted, accused of fraud and stripped of his "title". And because of this... sent him in a whirlwind obsession to to clear his name - even to the point of severe anger, antagonism & revenge. Carl & Muntz lives could be compared... they both have a mission they feel is crucial to see completed.. however, Carl realizes that there's bigger aspects to life, than material things & egoism-- Like Russel's safety and the fate of "Kevin" - while Muntz chose the self-centered path, concluding that his mission should (& will) be priority, far above the lives and safety of anyone else around him. (as shown through the implication that he killed anyone who entered Paradise Falls, whether they were planning on taking "Kevin" or not).
Just some interesting food for thought...

So with that, I give this move a "8 out of 10"... and will probably let KB watch it, once she gets quite a bit older - and is viewed in the comforts of our own home, where we can discuss a few things.

In the words of my friend, Laura: "May your Spirit of Adventure fly high, and may our boring moments be remembered. Always." :-)

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