My husband, two boys, and I watched Up together last night. We all enjoyed the movie, and it made me rather emotional. I had to fight back tears at several points, especially as my husband was watching to see if I was going to cry. Truthfully, I felt much more emotion in the first twenty minutes of this movie then I did during the entire film Avatar. The two go head to head for the best picture Oscar and at this point, I think Up should be the winner . . . but I also have eight more films to watch!
Up started off with young Carl Fredrickson watching a newsreel in the 1930’s about his hero Charles Muntz. Muntz was an explorer that flew around in a dirigible with his dogs. He discovered a place in South America called Paradise Falls, but was accused of fabricating the skeleton of a large bird that he found. In order to clear his name, Fredrickson set off again, and never returned.
Carl meets a young tomboy named Ellie and together they have a dream of one day going to Paradise Falls. There was a beautiful montage at the beginning of the movie showing them growing up, getting married, and their life together. One bad point was when it showed them excited about having a baby and I was like, “Kile – they are going to have a baby!” Then they showed them sad after obviously losing the baby. Kile – “Why are they sad? Where is the baby?” Me and Ben . . . not quite sure how to answer (especially as I wanted to cry instead of answer!) Another awkward moment came when Carl and Ellie grew old and Ellie passes away. Kile, “What happened?” Ben tried to avoid the question and I told him that Ellie died and went to live at Jesus’ house. Kile was concerned. Bottom line, the beginning montage was a beautiful story of the trials of life and not always getting to fulfill your dreams, but having a wonderful life anyway. It just may be hard for small children (Kile is four) to understand.
The rest of the movie is Carl’s new adventure. After an incident with a construction worker where Carl is ordered to move to an old folk’s home, he uses LOTS of balloons to make his house into his own dirigible of sorts. What he doesn’t know is that neighborhood kid, Russell is on the front porch along for the ride. As he floated into the sky, Kile thought he was on his way to heaven to find Ellie . . . which is a different way to think of it! Carl and Russell make their way to South America, but fall short of Paradise Falls. Carl attaches ropes to himself and Russell and decides to walk the rest of the way there. They encounter many adventures along the way, including a dog named Dug. I’ll stop my summary at this point!!
Overall, Ben, Daniel (almost 2), and I really enjoyed this movie. I liked the adventure, but I really loved the lesson that life isn’t over even when it’s near the end, you should life it to the fullest and care for other people. I also love that although life didn’t turn out for Ellie and Carl as they had planned, Ellie enjoyed it all. Kile (4) liked the movie, but was a bit confused at the adult themes at the beginning and was scared during various action sequences.