This post was originally going to be before the Oscar nominations arguing why Up should be nominated for Best Picture, but now i am going to argue why it was appropriate to receive such a nomination.

Up is the second animated feature film to be nominated for Best Picture. The other was Beauty and the Beast in 1991. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs and Toy Story both received honorary Oscars for their progression of animated film. Although i believe that animation should have its own category, I also believe that they should be eligible and taken seriously as Best Picture nominees. Recently, Pixar has been created superb animated films that have been topping end of year best lists. Wall-E in 2008 and Up are examples.

I was shocked upon reading A.O. Scott and the other NYTimes film critics choices for Best Picture and they excluded Up. Up is one of the best. It is a unmistakably love story filled with adventure, struggle, comedic relief and yes it happens to be animated. People think that animated films are just made for children. Yes, these films are focused on children but they are also made for the parents who watch it when they take their child. Up is just as funny and interesting for a child as for an adult. The talking dog, Dug, is probably funnier for a child but I definitely chuckled.

In terms of the characteristics films are judges on, like plot structure and character development, this film rivals any. The story is full with plot twist and developments and the elder protagonist, Carl, carries out a progression that is far superior to any monotone acting Humphrey Bogart ever did.

This film also has emotions. Any who have seen the film knows the scene that I am about to recreate. Carl finally reaches his destination atop a South American cliff after arguing with Russell, his junior explorer tag-along, about rescuing the snipe they have been traveling with. Carl decides to look through his late wife’s childhood explorer scrapbook. As he flips the pages he remember her as a child and the adventures she wanted to fulfill but never got the chance. As he nears the pages that he remember he stumbles upon more that she added over their lifetime together. They are the depictions of their marriage and the time they shared. On the final page is a note to him. In her handwriting it reads, “thanks for the adventure – Now go have a new one!” This scene matched with the simple piano notes is extremely emotional and the turning point in the movie. It now only signals a change in Carl but it terms of my argument its illustrators how animation can be just as potent and emotional as real life.

Finally, in a year when Avatar came out, it is perfectly acceptable for Up to be nominated. Avatar was +65% computer generated. I know their is a difference between CGI and animated but they both have the computerized look that people show bias towards animation for.

I am excited that Up is nominated because it gives creditability to a medium that i feel deserves it. Do i necessarily think it should win? I am going to let you decide that. Actually, i am going to make you wait till i do my predictions!

    • rmwreski
    • February 2nd, 2010

    Cinema, I Love You is now officially in my favorites list. Yay.

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