Saturday, July 4, 2009

"Up" [A]

The opposite of the self-explanatory movie title is "Up". It could be about almost anything. In fact, it's about a man who seeks to fulfill his promise to his dead wife by going to a mysterious place in South America known as "Paradise Falls". He does so by hoisting his house out of the city with several hundred helium balloons just as they come to cart him off to the old folks' home. He encounters a young Wilderness Explorer, the actual wilderness, a wiley giant bird, an outcast talking dog, and his boyhood hero, now gone bad.

What worked: characterizations, story elements, gags ("squirrel!"), and animation. The 3D system was more astonishing and less intrusive than with Coraline.

What didn't work: my disbelief system kept kicking in whenever the old man stopped needing his omnipresent cane and was able to accomplish physical feats worthy of a young Arnold Schwarzenegger. His disabilities vs abilities shifted a bit to conveniently for the plot.

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