*****NOMINATED FOR 5 OSCARS, WON 2*****
We hope that you have been enjoying our Pixar Series! Inside Out was so moving that it really motivated me to look back and enjoy some of PIxar’s pillars again. As much as I love Pixar, Up and tomorrows review on Brave will mark the end to the series, for now anyway, here is a list of the Pixar Series so far:
Story is King at Pixar. Watching an interview with John Lasseter recently, I learnt that the story creating process for Toy Story took about a year and a half. That is a substantial amount of time, considering that most live action stories are penned onto a script, and the filming takes place, not much longer after that. Then he mentioned an interesting point, with digital animation, they don’t go and animate scenes over and over again, get hours and hours of footage, and then do a final edit, that doesn’t happen with digital animation. There is one go at it, and the final edit has been basically completed even before animation begins. This process could be a possible explanation as to why Pixar is able to deliver a hit after hit.
Steve Jobs believed in this model of story-telling and was willing to invest $50MIllion of his own money, to get Pixar off the ground. In the same interview, with John Lasseter, Steve Jobs asks us the question, ‘who hasn’t seen Snow White?’ The majority of people, internationally even, know about Snow White. Snow White was released by Disney in 1937. Every time I realise that, it amazes me, and makes me realise the impact that animation does have on entire generations. Steve Jobs knew this, and he knew that the products that would come out of Pixar would live on for decades. This is so true. Toy Story will be turning 20 this November 22nd, and it still seems fresh and new. Toy Story will live on for decades to come, Inside Out will, and so will Up.
Up is no doubt up there as a truly iconic piece of cinema. Initially it was the first animated film to ever open at the Cannes Film Festival, which received a standing ovation. It was also the first animated film to be nominated for both Best Picture and Best Animated Feature at the Oscars. Toy Story 3 was the second to receive that honour. Although not taking home top prize, Up did win 2 Oscars, including Best Original Score, by Michael Giacchino, his first and only Oscar to date. The score to Up is truly moving and touching. Combined with the opening montage of Carl and Ellie’s life, wow, the hardest of individuals would have to admit to being moved by those five minutes of story telling! Interestingly only 9 film have won the Grammy, Golden Globe and Academy Award for Best Original Score. Up is the most recent to have achieved this, the others are listed here:
1. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid
3. Star Wars: Episide IV – A New Hope
4. E.T the Extra Terrestrial
5. Beauty and the Beast
7. The English Patient
8. The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King
Notice that a third of the features in the list are animated films? I think that is saying something. Who will be next? Needless to say Up presents to us a golden story, a story that is really different to anything that Pixar has done. This is one of the great things about Pixar, they are able to create original stories, that almost serve as a surprise each time we go to the cinemas. We have a sense that it will be good, but most of the time we really don’t know what to expect. Plots are usually kept under wraps really well, and I recall watching the previews to Up, and thinking, ‘that looks cool, a guy floating his house away with balloons, but whats the story about!?’ I was pleasantly surprised. I am sure you will be too, there are moments in this film that really get to you.
Up is a beautiful story about age and life. It also has a heartwarming message about friendships and the people we meet. In it’s own unique way, the whole thing is like a metaphor of how sometimes we allow things to hold us back from pursuing our dreams. Additionally life itself is an adventure, and embracing life to the full is a wonderful thing. Love, friendship and family are key themes explored in this artistic film, which is why Up will be a classic for decades to come, because this story is timeless and always relevant. Let Up, uplift you!
TRIVIA COOKIES: The tepui, flat mountain, of Venezuela are very similar to Paradise Falls, the place Carl and Ellie have always wanted to visit.
Recognise these toys? This marks Lotso’s first appearance in the Pixar Universe.
The Pixar A113 in Up is actually courtroom A113.