The film itself was absolutely spectacular and in my humble opinion, the best one Pixar has made to date. However, the various elements that went into making the storyline successful were the most bizzare I've ever seen. Oddly enough, the whacked out details worked together to form a true masterpiece.
In a nutshell, Up is the story of a young boy (Carl) and girl (Ellie) who live in the same town, form their own "adventure" clubhouse, and imitate their adventure idol, Charles Muntz. As they grow up and get married, they plan several times to visit a secluded section of South America, known as Paradise Falls, but never end up getting there due to life circumstances. Ellie then dies of old age before they are able to make the trip to Paradise Falls, leaving the stage set for Carl to make the trip by himself in his late wife's honor.
That's the simple explanation of roughly the first ten minutes of the film before things get really weird.
I am still completely flabbergasted as to how a team of writers actually sat down at a table and wrote the storyline for the rest of this film. The only thing I can think of is a giant Pixar writers' acid trip that went something like this:
Ok..guys I got it!!...so like Ellie dies and then Carl starts talking...and then he hits the guy who hit his mailbox and he's in trouble...BIG trouble...so they come to take him to the retirement home....and then he goes back in and unleashes all the balloons and his house starts flying...and then he opens the curtains and woooo, he's flying along!!!! Yeah yeah....so then the kid wants a badge, so he knocks on the door and Carl's pissed...REAL pissed...and so then he grabs the garden hose and he's gotta drag his house to the waterfall.....wait dude, wait wait wait...ok, I got it...and then the dogs are like talking all around them and then this huge friggin' bird comes out and eats the chocolate and squawks in Carl's face...wait...yeah, his name's Kevin. And so like, the dog points and chases squirrels and then they go eat in the zeppelin...and then the guy's like "You took my bird!" and so he sets the house on fire and then they run away...and then the dog hides under the porch because he loves the guy...and then they fly back to the zeppelin and the dogs fly planes and chase squirrels and.....wait..no....yeah, so like then the kid gets the badge, but it's like a bottlecap or something....and yeah, it's over....oh and so yeah dude...like we should do 3D so the people will be like WHOA!!!....whoa...whew...it was just a movie.
Somehow the insanity worked brilliantly and combined with the 3D experience, was actually worth the exorbitant price of admission. Take my word for it. 4 stars out of 4.