Monday, June 29, 2009

On the Up and Up

On Saturday Mrs. Kyality and I went on a double date with the older two Kyality Kids… dinner and a movie. After we snagged some pork barbacoa and kid’s quesadillas at the Rio, we rolled in the Clubman—sunroof open—over to the District to see Pixar’s tenth full-length feature: Up. The District is rad because you can pre-purchase your actual seat so I snagged four front and center seats for a Digital 3D screening and we got there just as the previews began, which are apparently also shown in 3D. Did not know that.

I’ll just say it. Up is a straight up gem. It is an utterly original story that is literally unlike anything you’ve ever seen before, though it properly ties in subtle allusions to flicks like Star Wars and Indiana Jones. The most amazing thing about Up is the insane amount of trust it has in the audience. The doods at Pixar truly leave it up to you to connect all the dots, write your own back-story and fill in all the blanks, which are many—but that’s a good thing.

By leaving a vast majority of the exposition up to us, they were able to focus all their efforts on developing rich, amazing, original characters. These characters are an unlikely bunch that endear you through a mind-bogging amount of on-screen chemistry. Up is the ultimate example of show, don’t tell. Never once do you feel talked down to or hit over the head—Up simply invites you along for the ride and trusts you to keep up.

Technically, there’s yet another level of richness in respect to the characters. Up takes the “plastic doll” character design style pioneered by The Incredibles to the next level and strikes the perfect balance between life-like detail and surrealistic caricature. Just watch the details in Muntz’s face as Russell slides across the airship’s window while clinging to a garden hose—it’s seriously amazing.

So see this one on the big screen for sure, but in all honesty, no need for the Digital 3D version. It isn't U23D. This movie is as rich as it needs to be without things constantly jumping off the screen.
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