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17th June
written by Steph
I'm just gonna call it now: best movie of 2009

I'm just gonna call it now: best movie of 2009

How’s this for a short review: if you haven’t seen this movie, go and see it.  Now!  The end. Ok, did you do as I said?  No?  You need a little bit more incentive?  But it’s a PIXAR movie.  Those things are pretty much guaranteed to be cinematic gold (with the exception of Cars… what was up with that one?  I never saw it and quite honestly have no interest to ever do so.  Oh, also, I’ve never seen A Bug’s Life, but I consider that an oversight on my part and I’m going to go put on my Netflix queue right now…).  I didn’t even really know what Up was about for the most part going into it (my synopsis pre-watching Up: it’s about a crotchety old man who makes his house fly using balloons), and yet based on the fact that it was Pixar, I knew we had to go see it.  The 98% fresh rating over at Rotten Tomatoes didn’t hurt either. [By the way, my post-watching synopsis?  It’s about a crotchety old man who makes his house fly using balloons and is AWESOME.] And I would say that having now seen Up, that 98% fresh is well deserved, with the exception that I have no idea what is wrong with the 4 critics who saw it and didn’t like it.  I can only imagine that these are sad, shells of people who have never known love and more importantly, don’t want to.  Because Up is absolutely one of the best movies I have seen in a long time.  Recently we watched Slumdog Millionaire (which Tony should be reviewing very soon… right, Tony?), and in my opinion Up is really what Slumdog was aspiring to be.
I'm still too busy weeping to caption this...

I'm still too busy weeping to caption this...

I could go into a plot synopsis that is more involved than the one I gave above, but honestly, you don’t need one.  Really, you don’t.  Go watch it and be swept away, because Up is one of the sweetest, loveliest, funniest, and affirming movies.  Oh yes, and it’s sad and poignant, too.  I am woman enough to admit that I got a little weepy during last summer’s Wall E near the end, but Up?  Ohhhhhh… I was a snotty, sobbing mess not 10 minutes into it.  Way to go for the jugular, Up.  And then I proceeded to cry two more times before it was done… as well as for a good portion of the way home, and later that night in bed.  Yes, I tend to be overly emotional (I have a lot of feelings!), and maybe some things resonated extra because of the whole getting married in less than a month (!), but I’ll have you know that Tony cried too!  And he’s far more stoic than I.  And we were not the only ones to do so.  There was some woman (or man!  It was dark, I don't know who it was.) who was very audibly just losing it during crying bout part two (and no, I promise it wasn't me.  I'm a messy cryer, but quiet!).  But to balance out those heart hurting moments, there are plenty of laughs and lots of rollicking adventure  So go and see the movie, but if you’ve ever loved anyone, or had a dog you were pretty fond of (because the dogs are so well drawn in this flick!  Doug conveys exactly what our little lady Emmy Lou would be thinking, provided she did in fact think…), or are a real person, be sure to bring some Kleenex. I won't say this is my absolutely favorite Pixar movie ever made (I still really love Monsters Inc.), but it's really good.  If at times it feels a bit aimless or not as tightly scripted, I'm willing to overlook that simply because the rest is so darn wonderful.  It isn't a perfect movie, I suppose, but what Up gets right, it really gets right.  Honestly, I laughed, I cried, and not once did I look at my watch; we will buy it on blu-ray when it comes out on DVD.  Also, I want it to get nominated for an Oscar.  What more could you want in a movie? Other notable tidbits: •    We saw the movie in 3D, which was cool but not strictly necessary.  I’m completely happy to make my theater-going experience as incomparable as possible, so the special effects were nice.  They’re done in an organic, unintrusive way that doesn’t feel gimmicky and was well-done.  But as I said, we would have liked the movie just as much had we been without that fancy third dimension. •    Also, it kind of goes without saying that the visuals are amazing in this movie.  But, er, well, I've said it now.  Up is really pretty to watch.  The lighting, the hair, the textures... it's all incredibly stunning. •    The musical score is SO good.  Whimsical and nostalgic, it is the perfect accompaniment to the film.  It harkens back to the ragtime Scott Joplin era, and is also vaguely French at times… I want a copy of the soundtrack now. Rating: 5 out of 5


  1. Lu

    As soon as I got home from watching “Up,” I bought the soundtrack and cried some more.

    True story.

    God that movie made me sob. It was so good! SO GOOD.

  2. 06/17/2009

    I LOVED this movie. We wept multiple times. I was a complete mess by the end. I loved the clever way that they had talking animals (without being too cheesy), I loved how crotchety the old man was, I just loved everything. I even liked the little boy! It was so sweet and just absolutely wonderful. I bawled at the thought of being without Kalem. My heart ached for both Carl’s and Russell’s loneliness. Basically, I just wept the entire time. But it was funny! I’m so glad you liked it, too.

    When is your wedding day? Are you registered? Where are you getting married? I’m so excited for you both!

  3. I have never heard of Up before. I guess it isn’t going to be released in the UK for a while. I’ll make a note of it, and make sure I watch it as soon as it comes over here. It sounds so good!

  4. 06/17/2009

    This is one that I really want my whole family to see this summer. I am so glad you liked it and gave it such a great review! I will have to let you know what I think after I have seen it.

  5. 06/17/2009

    I would like to see this.

  6. 06/17/2009

    @ Lu: It was so good! And I did cry for a good long while afterwards as well… I’m glad to know I’m not alone in that regard!
    @ Chavonne: I could totally see you loving this movie, so I’m glad you did! Since you have dogs, I know you had an extra level of enjoyment from the pooches in this one. It was totally thoughts of some day being without Tony that made me sob… Of course you know how I felt, because you feel that way about Kalem!
    @ Jackie: I would have thought it would be out in the UK by now, but it did only come out about 3 weeks or so ago here, so I’m sure it will be out soon. It’s definitely one of those films worth seeing in the cinema proper.
    @ zibilee: It’s a great family movie. I doubt children will cry as the adults do, but I can see them being swept away. There are some scary parts, but of course everything works out well and any kid over the age of say, 6, should be fine with it no problem.
    @ charley: It was really good! You should see it!

  7. 06/17/2009

    Yay, we are planning to see this with the kids!! I didn’t think it would be that good. 😀

  8. My sister and I tried to go see this a couple weekends ago and it was sold out. Granted, it was 3 p.m. on a rainy Saturday so I should have expected it, but still… I was disappointed then, but I am even more bitterly disappointed now because it sounds so, so good. I’ll probably be a weeping mess, but I don’t care.

  9. 06/17/2009

    Oh my God!You’ve made this movie sound so good. I have to see it. I’m definitely going this weekend.

  10. 06/18/2009

    @ claire: it is that good! I think your boys will really love it!
    @ Kim: At least now you’ll be prepared to bring tissue with you! We saw this at 9:30 pm on a Saturday night, so not really prime kid’s movie watching time, really!
    @ Vasilly: I hope you love it! It was so good. I want to see it again even if it did make me a snotty, sniveling mess!

  11. 06/20/2009

    Saw this yesterday, and you’re right, it’s AWESOME! I cried twice, but the whole movie was just fabulous. And the talking dogs were great, especially since I have a dog who totally thinks “I just me you. I LOVE you!” like Doug said.

  12. 06/21/2009

    Yay! So glad you enjoyed it. I think pretty much everyone who has a dog completely sees Doug as a reflection of his/her canine companion… The Pixar folks really got it spot on there!

  13. Kay

    I want to see this movie SO much! We’ve been planning to go see it since it’s been in theaters, but every single time something came up. We’re really hoping to go see it this week. Maybe even tomorrow! Everything I’ve heard about it make it sounds SO good (I have to say, Monsters Inc is kind of my favorite, too.)

    And now I’m curious about your Slumdog Millionnaire review! I for one has been slightly dissappointed with it, mainly because there was so much hype and my expectations were so high! But hey, I’ll keep my comments for the official review 🙂

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