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The Mystery Of UP

Today I watched Up.

I think the thing that struck me most while I was watching it was how much of the movie was written solely for adults. I mean, how many kids watching that movie would have been able to figure out that the old man’s wife could not have kids?

It makes you wonder why Pixar does such things. Granted, it is common wisdom that for a children’s movie to be successful it should appeal to the adults as well as to the children. But it is hard to think of any other children’s movie that has so much in it that goes completely over a child’s head. The only ones that come close are other Pixar flicks.

To be sure, Shrek had a lot of parody in it that a child would miss. But the parody worked on its own terms for little kids. They did not have to get the parody to enjoy the movie. And maybe I am wrong, but I think that there is an awful lot of stuff in Up that kids just won’t get.

That is not to say that kids won’t enjoy the movie, but it strikes me that it will never become a favorite of the little ones on par with Toy Story or Lion King. And if the people behind Pixar have any brains, they had to realize that it was going to be this way when they were sending it out the door.

So it makes you wonder why they do it. You would think they would make even more money if they geared it more toward little kids. I mean, adults watch Pixar’s stuff. But kids would watch it over and over again if they geared it more toward them. Kids have time and loyalty that most adults lack.

The only thing I can think of is that a lot of people in Pixar would rather be making movies for adults, but don’t feel that they can get away with their anti-modernist streak if they did so.

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