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Up (Pete Docter & Bob Peterson)

Is Anyone Really Surprised That This Film Is Good?

After living in his home for most of his life, Carl is suddenly surrounded by skyscrapers and construction. They want to buy his house so they can tear it down and build a retirement home. He will have none of this and decides to use thousands of balloons to literally lift his house 'up' and soar to a place he's been dreaming of going since a kid.

There's a bit more to the plot, but I don't want to divulge that information. Going into the film not knowing about it might have a stronger impact on you. Up, which is yet another fascinating film from the geniuses at Pixar is vibrant with colour, full of laughs, tugs on the heart strings and is an adventure for both kids and adults. I never thought a film that had to really old characters in the lead roles would appeal to the young ones, but Up surprised me. In fact, it really surprised me, hearing about the concept I thought that Pixar finally had a dud on their hands. Nope, not this time.

Up is one of my favourite Pixar films, up their with last years Wall-E and The Incredibles. The film is unique and inspiring. I doubt you'll find such quality film making from any other animated film, Pixar has set the bar time and time again. Up, while not visually stunning or powerful as last years Wall-E takes a different route and uses vibrant colours to draw attention to itself. The characters are cartoonish and the story itself could never be based on any reality and for a film about an old guy in a house with balloons, it's mighty adventurous.

Every Pixar film has a message that their cleverly slip into the excitement and Up is no different. We go on this journey with Carl and the young boy scout Russell, Carl at first does not like Russell, nor does he want him around. These two characters are at opposite ends of each other, one old and quite, the other young and talkative. Of course by the end of the flick they bond. Also along for the ride are two side characters, Kevin the colourful native bird of Paradise Falls (they place Carl wants to finally see) and Dug, a dog who can mysteriously talk. Dug is not the only dog who can talk though, the place is full of them, all trained to open doors and fly planes. They all heel to their master Charles Muntz, who has spent his life trying to capture Kevin.

Up is not only funny, fun and exciting, it packs a few emotional scenes too. Some people might want to bring some tissues, while it's not a sob story it is one of the few Pixar films that have moved me. What happens to Carl happens to everyone, so you can relate to him. You are immediately grabbed by him and his story and the film has more emotional punch in ten minutes of dialogue free montage then most dramas or romance films today can say for themselves.

There are a lot of words to describe Up: Delightful, endearing and whimsical are a few, but one I will choose to employ is heart. Along with Wall-E, Up has the most heart out of every other Pixar film I've seen. The film has a PG rating though, only other Pixar film to have this is The Incredibles. The Russell kid is shot at and people die, at times I was thinking would kids be scared of this? I don't think so, nothing horrible ever happens that could traumatize a young one in my opinion.

I did not bother to see this film in 3-D, I've heard it doesn't give enough 'pop' to warrant the additional money on the ticket. Seeing it at a regular theatre will not hinder your viewing at all. All the voice acting is top-notch and perfect casting with Plummer and Asner. See Up in theatres while you can, it is one of the year's best.