There aren’t so many films that made me cry, I can remember a handful and as examples…Toy Story 2 (Pixar) when Jesse told her story of being abandoned by her ‘owner’ and Meet the Robinson’s (Walt Disney Animation), I cried much at the end of the story, that when Lewis was finally adopted and the ending song Little Wonders was played. I thought it would be the last film that I would cry to watch until I saw UP, Pixar’s latest feature animated film which was also the first to screen in 3D. A few minutes into the film and my tears welled up.
When you meet Carl Fredricksen at first (voiced by Edward Asner), you might think he is not the ideal film protagonist at all. But as I learn more about Carl, a 78-year-old retired balloon salesman when his story was shown, my views changed. He and his childhood sweetheart Ellie (voiced by Director’s daughter elie Docter) were explorer wannabes. As kids, they had dreamed of one day going to Paradise Falls, deep in the mysterious South American jungles. They grew up, got married and were saving up for that particular trip but problems arise; home issues, childlessness, car repairs and all that kept them busy and ate up what the two saved up…they never made it to Paradise Falls. Carl almost forgot about their dream. When he finally remembered, Ellie was not too fit to go and eventually died without realizing their explorer adventures. Now, I’ll stop before spilling more…mycrying which did not surprise hubby and the kids.
This movie is a must see. There were lots of instances when the grumply-old-Carl’s antics would make him look more of an action star than an old balloon seller who is in retirement. The whole cast ensemble namely Russell (voiced by Jordan Nagai), a cute Wilderness Explorer who wanted to earn his “senior assistance” badge; Kevin, the flightless birds who turned out to be female; even Charles Muntz, who was Carl and Ellie’s inspiration; and of course the talking dogs, added much for our “oh’s” and guffaws.
Needless to say, the production design is as gorgeous as it should be like its predecessors Wall-E, Finding Nemo and Toy Story. What I like about the film though are the silent passages which shows that indeed, action speaks louder than words…and again what makes each Pixar movies apart from others… that of the humanity within the characters unfolding as the story is told and the ability to touch the heart of the viewers.