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What the disney movie UP really means.

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"TL;DR: Carl Fredricksen died in his sleep the night after he returns from court with the order that he vacate to a retirement home (as a result of the incident with the construction worker and the mailbox). Everything that happened afterwards represents Carl's journey through the Afterlife.
The first thing we need to do is disprove the whole floating house thing as that sets the stage for the rest of the characters. We already know that the amount of balloons Carl used to rip his house off its foundation and sail to South America was far smaller than it needed to be in order to accomplish that goal. So right away the idea of balloon-floating a house becomes unlikely.
We also know that other constraints would have made the effort impossible. Based on the information in the above article he would have needed at least 100,000 balloons, each three feet across. That's hardly something that a senior citizen on a fixed income could have afforded to locate, purchase, and have delivered in a few hours. Then there's the matter of the 1.5 million cubic feet of helium needed to fill those balloons; again, not enough time or money to locate, purchase, and deliver. And he certainly didn't have it on hand. At best, he could have raided the welding supply shed in the adjacent construction site for a fraction of the helium he'd need, but even so there's no way he would be able to haul all of those canisters into his house by himself. Also, there were only a few helium canisters outside the house, certainly far less than he would have needed, so where did it all come from?
But let's assume for a moment that he could have somehow gotten the balloons and the helium (and the string) into his house with nobody noticing. He gets his court order and decides to take action. He's got 24 hours at best — 86,400 seconds — to inflate and tie off his 100,000 balloons. Can't be done. The world's fastest balloon inflater couldn't do it, let alone a probably-arthritic 78-year-old man. And since all of his neighbors are long gone he doesn't have anyone to help him out, so how did that get done? Plus, we saw in the movie that he had all of the balloons covered in a tarp. How could he have secured the tarp down so well that all those balloons — theoretically enough to rip a house off its foundation — didn't also pull the tarp out of its moorings?
So all combined, the raising of the house represents Carl's initial transition from the physical world to the spiritual world. He "rises up" in the same way as people who have near-death experiences relate the feeling of floating above their body and watching as the doctors resuscitate it.
Russell represents Carl's guardian angel, or perhaps more accurately a 'spiritual guide' of sorts who is trying to 'earn his wings' by helping Carl with his transition. Russell has earned many badges and is very close to getting his final badge, thus "earning his wings". His final badge requires him to help a senior citizen. This makes sense; Russell's other badges were preparing him in various ways for the final test, which is to help a senior citizen into the afterlife. Once Russell earns that badge his 'training' is complete and he becomes a true guardian angel. Russell's innocence and devotion shows his purity, and the example he sets through that purity helps Carl see the error in his ways of thinking. Several times in the movie you see Carl change his actions in direct response to Russell's response/actions.
Kevin (the bird) represents a Higher Calling — a Muse, perhaps, or maybe even God itself. Something that Carl can aspire to that's beyond his own desires and wishes. Russell would be fully aware of what Kevin is. At first Carl couldn't care less about Kevin and wants to leave it behind, but Russell eventually shows Carl some of the better aspects of Kevin. Kevin's love of chocolate is a metaphor for the small rewards that are earned along the way of pursuing a higher calling. The fact that Kevin is rarely around when Carl needs him and often around when Carl doesn't want him to be is also indicative of a higher calling. A Muse-like inspiration rarely strikes when we want it to. By the end of the movie Carl has come to accept and protect Kevin, and thereby accepting his own higher purpose in life (and afterwards) even if he doesn't fully understand it.
We know that Dug's "translation collar" is impossible even in the context of the movie's reality so there's another clue that what's happening on screen isn't really happening in the movie's reality. It's just another part of Carl's transition. But Dug (the dog) himself represents a metaphor for Transition, the change from one state to the other. Dug was Muntz's dog but switched to Carl/Russell's side. Dug was the bottom ranking dog but became Alpha. And through the translation collar Dug bridged the gap between animal and human — in the same way that Dug is helping Carl to bridge the gap between life and afterlife.
Muntz is Evil, of course, resplendent upon a story of lies at first and commanding the Hounds of Hell. Muntz wants to destroy Kevin for his own glory and personal satisfaction in much the same way that Lucifer wants to destroy all that is good (biblically speaking). Carl's soul is the prize here; if Muntz destroys the Higher Calling then Carl falls into despair, and Muntz wins.
The house itself represents Carl's attachment to the physical world with Paradise Falls being Carl's perceived representation of Heaven. And with the house finally landing at Paradise Falls, Carl has finally finishing his transition and completed his greatest adventure, presumably reuniting with Ellie in Heaven."
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by on Dec. 29, 2012 at 1:15 AM
Replies (101-110):
happymommy1105
by Platinum Member on Dec. 30, 2012 at 4:02 PM
1 mom liked this
Its still a cartoon and I will watch it as a cartoon.

Just like I only watch twilight for entertainment purposes only.

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JacksMom1221
by Silver Member on Dec. 30, 2012 at 4:13 PM
Interesting! I admit I got a little cynical in the beginning with the balloon talk (after all, mermaids, talking candle sticks, singing lion cubs, pixie fairies, none of that is real it feasible either). But, definitely a different way to look at the story!
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Basherte
by Silver Member on Dec. 30, 2012 at 4:14 PM

I don't mean interpret the movie yourself. I mean if the child would happen to ask a question about something that happens in this movie. or any movie really. 

I just watch it with my son because he enjoys it, right now too. But if he were to ever ask a question about something, maybe something that happens in that movie as well, then I can use it as a teaching tool. To help get the point across. Especially since my son who is almost 4 years old is non verbal right now, and is autistic, it would be easier to explain something if we have a visual representation of it. One that I find to be appropriate, not only to the subject, but to his age as well.

Quoting AtillaTheHun:

I think there are many different ways to interpret a movie. To do this in such depth can be interesting. Personally, I don´t have the time nor do I feel the need to do it. I simply want to enjoy a wonderful movie with my children. 

Quoting Basherte:


Quoting AtillaTheHun:

I´m not reading this. "UP" is a great movie, my kids and I enjoy watching it. That is all I need to know. 

There are a lot of things in that movie that can be used as learning/teaching tools... but the bottom line is that this is a deep movie for disney. It's also a very well done movie. I didn't read the whole post because quite simply this is a cartoon. If someone feels the need to get this far into a cartoon, maybe they need help.



AtillaTheHun
by Bronze Member on Dec. 30, 2012 at 4:20 PM

Oh, I certainly agree that you can use it as a teaching tool. No questions about that. Especially when kids are younger it is easier to explain certain things with some "visual aid" and they understand it a lot better. 

Quoting Basherte:

I don't mean interpret the movie yourself. I mean if the child would happen to ask a question about something that happens in this movie. or any movie really. 

I just watch it with my son because he enjoys it, right now too. But if he were to ever ask a question about something, maybe something that happens in that movie as well, then I can use it as a teaching tool. To help get the point across. Especially since my son who is almost 4 years old is non verbal right now, and is autistic, it would be easier to explain something if we have a visual representation of it. One that I find to be appropriate, not only to the subject, but to his age as well.

Quoting AtillaTheHun:

I think there are many different ways to interpret a movie. To do this in such depth can be interesting. Personally, I don´t have the time nor do I feel the need to do it. I simply want to enjoy a wonderful movie with my children. 

Quoting Basherte:


Quoting AtillaTheHun:

I´m not reading this. "UP" is a great movie, my kids and I enjoy watching it. That is all I need to know. 

There are a lot of things in that movie that can be used as learning/teaching tools... but the bottom line is that this is a deep movie for disney. It's also a very well done movie. I didn't read the whole post because quite simply this is a cartoon. If someone feels the need to get this far into a cartoon, maybe they need help.




quickbooksworm
by Silver Member on Dec. 30, 2012 at 4:21 PM
Whoever wrote this is reading way too much in to it.
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Mommavieve
by on Dec. 30, 2012 at 4:24 PM
Wow. Someone has a lot of time on their hands.
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Basherte
by Silver Member on Dec. 30, 2012 at 4:25 PM

Yeah.

I won't do what my mom did (unless absolutely necessary) she would explain things as the movie would play. Making it almost impossible to actually enjoy the movie. Now, I understand why she did it. She didn't want us to be scared during scary movies. But it made it a little difficult to enjoy for the longest time, because all I would see is the stuff that my mom had explained. 

I don't wanna do that, unless my son gets too scared during a movie that I don't find scary. He's 3 now though, so I have plenty of time to worry about that.


Love the conversation, by the way. 

I've seen a lot of personal attacks lately. It's nice to know that there are some on here that don't do the personal attacks. :)

Quoting AtillaTheHun:

Oh, I certainly agree that you can use it as a teaching tool. No questions about that. Especially when kids are younger it is easier to explain certain things with some "visual aid" and they understand it a lot better. 

Quoting Basherte:

I don't mean interpret the movie yourself. I mean if the child would happen to ask a question about something that happens in this movie. or any movie really. 

I just watch it with my son because he enjoys it, right now too. But if he were to ever ask a question about something, maybe something that happens in that movie as well, then I can use it as a teaching tool. To help get the point across. Especially since my son who is almost 4 years old is non verbal right now, and is autistic, it would be easier to explain something if we have a visual representation of it. One that I find to be appropriate, not only to the subject, but to his age as well.

Quoting AtillaTheHun:

I think there are many different ways to interpret a movie. To do this in such depth can be interesting. Personally, I don´t have the time nor do I feel the need to do it. I simply want to enjoy a wonderful movie with my children. 

Quoting Basherte:


Quoting AtillaTheHun:

I´m not reading this. "UP" is a great movie, my kids and I enjoy watching it. That is all I need to know. 

There are a lot of things in that movie that can be used as learning/teaching tools... but the bottom line is that this is a deep movie for disney. It's also a very well done movie. I didn't read the whole post because quite simply this is a cartoon. If someone feels the need to get this far into a cartoon, maybe they need help.





Mommavieve
by on Dec. 30, 2012 at 4:39 PM
This is like the Rugrats theory.
Posted on the NEW CafeMom Mobile
mcginnisc
by Gold Member on Dec. 30, 2012 at 4:46 PM

I read it all... 

Honestly,  I just can't get behind the thought that the creators at Disney would go into such a deep meaning of a child's movie. Is there meaning? Sure..what movie doesn't have some meaning? 

Disney movies pretty much have the same meaning: Be true to yourself, enjoy life, be a good friend/person and love endures. UP has those same underlying meanings- Carl was true to himself and a promise to his beloved wife. He also managed to make an impact on that child's life in the end and his love for his wife endured. 

Oh, and I do agree that if you actually make the paragraphs decipherable it would make it more appealing to others to read. 

Claire

Moderator: Healthy Weight Loss & Adoptive Moms

" I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." Phillipians 4:13

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AtillaTheHun
by Bronze Member on Dec. 30, 2012 at 4:47 PM

My mom did the very same thing :D 

My youngest daughter will be 4 soon, too :) She cracks me up with her comments during a movie sometimes. 

I enjoy the conversation, too. Personal attacks seems to be the hobby of many women here. I don´t really get anything out of bashing and bitching at someone else. Then again, that makes a decent conversation even more enjoyable :) 

Quoting Basherte:

Yeah.

I won't do what my mom did (unless absolutely necessary) she would explain things as the movie would play. Making it almost impossible to actually enjoy the movie. Now, I understand why she did it. She didn't want us to be scared during scary movies. But it made it a little difficult to enjoy for the longest time, because all I would see is the stuff that my mom had explained. 

I don't wanna do that, unless my son gets too scared during a movie that I don't find scary. He's 3 now though, so I have plenty of time to worry about that.


Love the conversation, by the way. 

I've seen a lot of personal attacks lately. It's nice to know that there are some on here that don't do the personal attacks. :)

Quoting AtillaTheHun:

Oh, I certainly agree that you can use it as a teaching tool. No questions about that. Especially when kids are younger it is easier to explain certain things with some "visual aid" and they understand it a lot better. 

Quoting Basherte:

I don't mean interpret the movie yourself. I mean if the child would happen to ask a question about something that happens in this movie. or any movie really. 

I just watch it with my son because he enjoys it, right now too. But if he were to ever ask a question about something, maybe something that happens in that movie as well, then I can use it as a teaching tool. To help get the point across. Especially since my son who is almost 4 years old is non verbal right now, and is autistic, it would be easier to explain something if we have a visual representation of it. One that I find to be appropriate, not only to the subject, but to his age as well.

Quoting AtillaTheHun:

I think there are many different ways to interpret a movie. To do this in such depth can be interesting. Personally, I don´t have the time nor do I feel the need to do it. I simply want to enjoy a wonderful movie with my children. 

Quoting Basherte:


Quoting AtillaTheHun:

I´m not reading this. "UP" is a great movie, my kids and I enjoy watching it. That is all I need to know. 

There are a lot of things in that movie that can be used as learning/teaching tools... but the bottom line is that this is a deep movie for disney. It's also a very well done movie. I didn't read the whole post because quite simply this is a cartoon. If someone feels the need to get this far into a cartoon, maybe they need help.






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