Friday, July 3, 2009
Up: Reviewed Also Known As, Up: Shit Gets Real
Alright guys, it's been out for a while, but it's never too late to talk about Up. (Spoiler Alert. Whole thing. Fuck you?)
I'm not even going to add tension to this review, Up was incredible. Without a doubt, this was the best thing pixar has ever done. That's right Wall-E fanboys. You heard me. You wanna debate this fact? Count up the number of times Jeff Garlin (Who is quite possibly John Goodman's less evil twin) appears in both movies. Whichever movie has the lower score, is superior.
Just kidding, he's a funny guy.
But in all seriousness, Up exceeded my expectations, and yes, was better than Wall-E. Notice how I didn't say, in my opinion, was better than Wall-E. It just was better than Wall-E.
Up was beautiful because it simultaneously allowed you to suspend your belief in the laws of physics, the physical ability of the elderly, and the concept of geography, all while easily sharing the emotions of the characters in the movie. Within the first 5 minutes of Up, I was as close as I get to crying at movies. (see how I preserved my masculinity right there?) Up doesn't beat around the bush. Facts like the reality of death and age aren't hidden or made light of. Carl has lost his wife, and is now alone in a world that is rapidly changing, and leaving him behind. Carl's lonliness is palpable from the first scene, and in making his sadness real, Pixar made Carl the most real character they've ever created. The movie deals with the topics of lonlieness and inner childhood all throughout its entirety, yet it manages to keep a light tone, with the delightful supporting character of a young boy scout named Russel, whose interactions with talking dog Dug and exotic bird Kevin kept the movie from being defined as a "downer," and as a matter of fact, I challenge anyone seeing this movie to leave the theatre without a smile on their face, seeing as despite the problems encountered along the way, all the characters manage to find something within themselves that gives them a new outlook on life, which is fantastic to see in a children's movie. Themes like these are, at least in my experience, the ones that are important in life. Sharing your shit with the other kids, and learning how important family is are great values and all, but I personally am terrified of getting old, and I'm not even close to alone in that sentiment. Up manages to leave you with the impression that, although most elderly people don't get to go on journeys through the sky in homeade dirigibles, there is something to be said for the journey from young to old, and beyond.
Amazing plot aside, some other high points of the movies are old strengths of Pixar's, namely, the stunning visuals. We've all heard this before, and know the score pretty much by heart now, Pixar is amazing at making things look beautiful. They always have been. However, Up had some added zing with the use of this new 3D trend that's been in vogue these past few months. Now, I always hated 3D. I saw it as an eye straining excuse for anything and everything to be overdramatically tossed at the audience. (That being said, I fully intend to see Final Destination 4 in 3D. Stop judging me.) But Up in 3D was very subtle and added to the experience without seeming gimmick-y. Also, the score, done by Michael Giacchino was brilliant and really added to the movie's overall feel, merging an old sounding melody with light hearted overtones that give it a more childish feeling.
Another thing about this movie that I liked was that it really reminded me of my favorite book of all time, The Little Prince. That probably seems like a crazy comparison, but both deal heavily with the idea of inner youth and adventure, as well as loneliness. Also, the whole balloon-house concept in combination with the score give the movie an overtone that feels oddly french to me. Just some food for thought, feedback on that would be much appreciated.
So on the Awesometer?
Up's a fucking 9. That's cool as hell, bro.
A 9 eh? That's about as awesome as say....
Driving the WeinerMobile
Driving the WeinerMobile into the Dave Matthews Band's Tour bus
MY FUCKING NEW WALLET HOLY SHIT ITS A BACON WALLET