Up (2009) - By tying thousands of balloons to his home, 78-year-old Carl sets out to fulfill his lifelong dream to see the wilds of South America. Russell, a wilderness explorer 70 years younger, inadvertently becomes a stowaway.
Reviewed by Rebecca. Please check out her blog:
Top 250 #108
Year of Release: 2009
Directors: Pete Docter, Bob Peterson
Edward Asner as Carl Fredricksen (voice)
Christopher Plummer as Charles F. Muntz. (voice)
Jordan Nagai as Russell. (voice)
Bob Peterson as Dug (voice)
This 2009 released 3D-computer animated comedy adventure movie is one more masterpiece by Pixar. The film about a grumpy old man experiencing an adventure was even nominated for five Academy Awards.
At first we get to know a little boy named Carl Fredrickson. He is a huge fan of the explorer Charles F. Muntz. Unfortunately Muntz is accused of being a cheater which really saddens him. One day little Carl makes a new friend, Ellie. She is as much of a Muntz fan as he is and Ellie finally convinces him to experience his own adventures. They dream of going to Paradise Falls, a magical place in South America where Charles Muntz discovered extraordinary things. After some time Carl’s and Ellie’s friendship becomes love. They get married, buy a house and spend their life together. They even started saving for a trip to Paradise Falls. But then Ellie falls ill and eventually dies. This turns Carl into a sad grumpy old man who doesn’t seem to like anybody.
He still lives in the old house, but because of construction plans he is supposed to sell it. Of course Carl refuses to do and even hurts a construction worker when he does some damage to Carl’s mailbox. Due to this a judge decides that Carl should be put in a retirement home. Instead of going there, Carl comes up with an amazing plan to honour Ellie. By attaching thousands of balloons, he turns his house into some flying machine that takes him to Paradise Falls.
However, what Carl didn’t notice was that Russell, a boy scout who wanted to help Carl in order to get his last badge, was hiding on his porch. Although Carl is highly annoyed by Russell, the two go to Paradise Falls together. After surviving a huge thunderstorm they eventually land on a ravine near Paradise Falls. The companions start hiking to the waterfalls. On their way they discover a bird (whom Russell names Kevin) who seems to be part of an almost extinct species and they come across a dog called Dug. The dog who is able to speak due to a special collar takes them to his master who turns out to be Charles Muntz. He spent his life searching for a bird like Kevin to prove that he wasn’t a cheater. The paranoid Muntz goes completely crazy when he finds out about Kevin and tries to catch the bird. Eventually Carl and Russell rescue Kevin and then go back home accompanied by Dug. There Carl becomes a surrogate father for Russell and he even gets the badge he was working for so hard.
Growing up with Disney movies I am always sceptical when a new film comes out. Some of the latest ones just don’t honour the feeling of the old films enough. But this one captures the spirit of the former movies and doesn’t fail to warm the audience’s heart. You just have to love this grumpy old man and the cute little Boy Scout you would like to hug throughout the whole movie. Especially Carl’s and Ellie’s love story at the beginning of the movie is enchanting. Of course the whole story is a bit foreseeable but who cares? A lot of effort was put into the characters and the appearance is almost flawless. Up is a charming movie that melts your heart with humour, some tragedy and finally a happy end that Carl and Russell both deserve.