I don’t write that many movie reviews, but Pixar’s latest release was such a cut above other films that I wanted to comment on many aspects of it. My brother Ben also had a few things to say.
The Story of Up
Story is king. Pixar’s writers and directors are known as being masters of the story development process, and in addition to exhibiting a technical superiority in the areas of structure and plot, they are growing increasingly adept at bringing powerful themes of character to life.
The Music of Up
A powerful storytelling tool is the musical score that accompanies every film. Some directors and composers don’t use this tool to its full extent, but Pete Docter and Michael Giacchino have done a tremendous job at uniting script and score to emphasize the emotional turning points of the film.
The Art of Up
But film is also a visual medium, and animated films offer a tremendous opportunity for artists to control every aspect of the image that the audience sees. From character design to color and composition, each shot demonstrates excellence in creative discipline.
The Technology of Up
Of course, a computer animated film also leans heavily on the rendering advances that allow for a hairy dog, a squashy scout with an overloaded pack, and a cubical man in perfectly simulated jacket and slacks to go venturing through a beautifully lit jungle. Also, this is Pixar’s first film to be released in stereoscopic 3D, which is no mean feat in itself.