Up was a heckuva lot of fun.
It did get a little toothgrinding, though, that Ellie, Carl’s wife, ended up dying before she could have HER adventure, and it was a little too pat that, once he actually looked through her adventure book, he discovered all the pictures she of the two of them together with a message to him “I’ve had my adventure [being with you], now go on and have some of your own!”. As if THAT hadn’t been an adventure for him, also?
I’ll admit that I cried a fair amount..okay, an effing lot, because Pixar manages to push all the right buttons of, “They Really LOVED each other“, and okay, that’s fine. That’s what these movies are supposed to do.
But it rankled afterward upon reflection that there were no other women in the movie until the very end, when Russell’s stepmother? mother? nanny? –it’s never made clear– makes her presence known in the audience at the very end when he gets his Explorer Badge. How hard could it have been for Russell to be a little girl? After all, Ellie was a spunky, lively, funny, intense and amazing little girl (we only get to know her as an adult through a montage). Did the filmmakers think they shouldn’t repeat it with a different little girl? I guess that’s what they were going after. Why not have the boy’s troop be a Campfire troop with both girls and boys in it? Only boys are allowed to have real adventures that take them all over the globe? Girls are satisfied with the adventure of marriage and relationship bliss?
There’s a huge pack of dogs in the section of the movie that takes place in Venezuela. Can you believe that the dogs were all male, too? How did they make more dogs? Where did the puppies come from for all those years? Were they all hidden in some secret whelping cave dutifully making puppies by the score?
I don’t want to make it sound like I hated this movie: No, I liked it, a lot, and it’s gorgeous and the story just whisks you along with poignant character moments. And it is nice to see Carl’s devotion to Ellie, his dead wife, throughout the movie. I think it is wonderful that there’s a decent animated movie with a geriatric main character. It was also great to see them meet as children, and then spend their entire lives together. That’s the kind of marriage that I think everyone who’s married wishes they could have.
But I am disastisfied, once out of the theater, at the message below all the fun in this movie: Girls, you can dream about having an adventure; Boys, you can actually LIVE the adventure.