Hidden Meaning in Pixar’s UP – Earthling Cinema


Greetings, and welcome to Earthling Cinema. I am your host, Garyx Wormuloid. This week’s artifact is Up, the film that
mandated the Pixar rule that adults should cry as much possible. The film follows human boy, Carl Marx, whose
dream is control the means of production so he can go to Paradise Falls, New Jersey, just
like his hero, Vladimir Lenin. One day a homeless girl named Ellie breaks
his arm. They naturally fall in love, and before you
know it, she dies. Like all great relationships. Anyway, the neighborhood’s getting gentrified,
which doesn’t sit right with Carl, who knows a thing or two about sitting. In fact, the thought of capitalism drives
Carl so bonkers, he assaults Bob the Builder, and with no other options, flees the country
in a pitiful excuse for an escape pod. Little does Carl know that a pre-diabetic
cub scout has stowed away to earn his badge for the mile high club. Maybe it’s those glasses, because Carl can’t
see they’re heading into a tornado, or why kids love cinnamon toast crunch. They narrowly survive, and land right where
they wanted to go, without having to ask for directions once, Karen. They go the rest of their journey on foot
and take the house with them, since there’s no valet. But not before befriending a talking horse
and famous American actor, Kevin Bacon, who who, legend has it, was six degrees taller than everyone
in Hollywood. But not so fast and the furious 15. A group of other angrier, more talkative horses
all want a piece of Kevin’s bacon. Cause I mean, who doesn’t? Unable to get a selfie, they take Carl and
the scout to their leader, because that’s what minions do best. They’re taken to a Blimpies where they learn
the Pepsi Twist: Lenin has been in New Jersey this whole time, trying cast Kevin in a snuff
film. Carl tells the boy scout not to be a narc,
but his blood sugar spikes and he blabs. They make a sweet escape, remembering that
horses don’t float. But just like my ex wife, Lenin is two steps
ahead and has lit the house on fire. Kevin gets birdnapped, so Carl goes back to
his original plan of–I guess, dying in the wilderness after two days. That is, until he finds an Amazon Nook, giving
him the proper motivation to enter the third act. A battle royale ensues, but not without some
warm-up stretching. Always stretch. Carl lets his house go to shit, and Lenin
realizes he could have learned something from Kevin Bacon: namely, how to get your foot
loose. Carl reunites Kevin with his bulimic children. And back in the big city, which has probably
been freaking out nonstop that someone was able to just fly away using balloons, Carl
gives the boyscout some worthless tin that’s at best, extremely heartwarming. Up illustrates the dangers of being trapped
by nostalgia, which wasn’t cured until 2067 by Dr. Millie Bobby Brown. When his F.W.B. dies, Carl metaphorically
enshrines her in the house that they built together. He keeps everything exactly as it was to preserve
her memory, and to keep her ghost happy. Outside, the world may keep truckin, but Carl
clings to the past, even though he may be in the Matrix. The house itself symbolizes Carl’s grief,
which he has to carry with him until the housing market improves. Lenin is in many ways Carl’s foxier counterpart. Like Carl’s condo, Lenin’s airship is
a museum of artifacts from better times, like the Jurassic age, and his mission of redemption
parallels Carl’s journey. But just as Carl can’t bring his wife back
no matter how many houses he knocks up, Lenin can’t bring back the glory days through
sniping the snipe. In fact, a snipe hunt is a colloquial term
for a wild grey goose chase wherein a naive person is fooled into chasing after something
that doesn’t exist…like love. Up sends a poignant message about coping with
grief in a healthy, gluten-free way. At first, Carl cares about nothing besides
his super dead wife. But as he develops affection for the scout
and Kevin Bacon, he develops a new, selfless purpose that helps him move on. To save the day, Carl must divest himself
of the past by littering. When Carl passes on the badge that Ellie gave
him as a child, we realize her memory has transformed from a burden around his neck
to something positive that he can share. Once hobbled by grief, the new Carl abandons
his walker and can once again move freely through the world, proving once and for all
Western medicine was a lie. The film posits that instead of bold adventures,
the best pursuits are the simple pleasures of everyday life, like enjoying a cup of Joe
on the porch of your spaceship. In the beginning, Russell claims he wants
to explore unknown lands and claim them for the Boy Scouts of America. But his happiest moments are his memories
about eating Dippin Dots with his deadbeat dad. For all of Lenin’s glorious exploits, he’s
more alone than Flargimom on Sector Five at Christmas. And while the childhood portion of Ellie’s
Adventure Book is full of dreams of Paradise Falls, the mature Ellie filled the book with
racey photographs of her life with Carl. The moral is to enjoy the simple things, like
the love and companionship of a friend. And avoid the bad things, like kidnapping and
trafficking a minor to South America. For Earthling Cinema, I’m Garyx Wormuloid. Adventure is out there!

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