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« Take me to the link | Main | What did you see over Memorial Day? »
Wednesday
May292019

"Up"... but to where?

Pixar's Up was released 10 years ago on this very day (the counterprogramming at movie theaters was Drag Me to Hell so you had a vertical choice that day). It seems hard to imagine it now, given that animated films rarely have the Oscar impact these days that they did in a very brief window in the Aughts, but it was nominated for 5 Oscars: Picture, Screenplay, Sound Editing, Score, and Animated Feature, winning the latter two.

Q1: Would you have voted for it in any of its Oscar categories?

Q2: If you could be dragged away by balloons today to your dream destination, where would it be?

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Reader Comments (12)

Q1: Short answer: yes: screenplay, score, sound, and animated feature. Longer answer: while Up would be far from my personal favorite Pixar pic, it’s still an outstanding example of what they do; Up might Pixar’s most emotionally complicated film, even more so than Coco or Inside Out. The grief both Carl and Russell are going through is far from easy viewing. I’ll always remember the collective devastation the whole theater was feeling during that opening montage. As for the score, it’s such a joy; and the main theme’s melody is one I often find myself whistling out of nowhere.

Q2: My partner and I are all about traveling to Iceland these days. Take me somewhere remote, but ideally still walking distance of one of those ice bath and sauna type spas.

May 29, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterJS

Q1: Yes, of course. One of the best movies of the year, probably even the most "remembered" one today, out of all the best picture nominees.

Q2: I would be dragged to baloons to hell.

May 29, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterAnon

Q1: Sorry, no. The Animated Film category was exceptionally strong that year. My first choice is Coraline, then The Fantastic Mr Fox, then The Frog Princess, then Up. And my last choice, The Secret of Kells would have also been a worthy winner. How many times are all the nominees in a category of such high quality? As for Best Picture, I liked An Education, then The Hurt Locker, then District 9, then A Serious Man. Up would be my #5.

Q2: Somewhere where there's lots of giraffes. I'd just like to hover over them for days and days.

May 29, 2019 | Unregistered Commenterken s.

Outside of Brad Bird, it is probably the most well directed of any of the Pixar films. I would have given Pete Doctor an directing nom (though I have NO idea who I would kick out of the actual lineup).

Also, can an animated film be nominated for Art Direction? If they could, Up would have been a shoe in.

May 29, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterBen

Up is underwhelming. If it came out today people would shrug, when it came out people were in Pixar-love mode.


Cars, Up and Walle are the worst of Pixar.

May 29, 2019 | Unregistered Commenterhuh

Q1: Maybe screenplay. I think it was the weakest nominee in the animated feature category even if it was locked to win it from the beggining. It's one of Pixar's best films, though.
Q2: To some reality where things go right and I feel good.

May 29, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterMe34

I’m not a huge fan of Up. The first five minutes are wonderful, but it drags from there. The hero is a man who evades the police after assaulting someone. The villain is a man who wants to take a bird back (alive, no less!) to helps advance scientific understanding.

Weird ethics, that film...

May 29, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterEvan

Wasn't that the first year where they expanded the Best Pic lineup? I feel like they had the right idea that year, they really went for variety. A Serious Man, District 9, Up, Precious, An Education, etc, but they never had that same diversity in the lineup again.

May 31, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterPhilip H.

1. I liked Up, but I feel similarly to Evan. No Oscars from me - the music is very good and memorable, but I'd have given the Oscar to Alexandre Desplat that year for Fantastic Mr. Fox (and Michael Giacchino the Oscar two years earlier for Ratatouille).

2. I feel like being transported to Italy today to walk among lemon groves. Instead, I'm on my way to the office!

May 31, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterEdward L.

Q1: yes it actually won the two it deserved

Q2: somewhere in northern Italy summer 1983

May 31, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterHepwa

Q1 Although I do prefer Fantastic Mr. Fox and Coraline that year, I'd nominate Up for sure and I don't mind it actually won. The first 10 Minutes are worth it alone.

Q2 Tokyo obviously, with a lot of money.

May 31, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterSonja

Philip H.: A reason, I think, they never had that much diversity again (at least after those first two years of the expanded Best Picture category) is that, after 2010, the Academy changed the nominating procedure for Best Picture.

For 2009 and 2010, voters could list up to 10 films. This resulted in voters reaching beyond the typical 'Oscar' type films to include some of their favourites poutside the box - e.g. District 9 and An Education in 2009 and 127 Hours and Winter's Bone in 2010.

But for 2011 onwards, when the Academy changed the Best Picture category from 10 nominees to between 5 and 10 nominees, voters were asked to pout forward only 5 films, rather than 10. This resulted in the more typical films getting the five slots, and so, even though each year since then has seen either 8 or 9 nominees, they all tend to be the more typical types of films (albeit of course with some nice surprises such as Brooklyn in 2015 and Black Panther in 2018).

May 31, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterEdward L.

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