A racing certainty for this year’s Best Animated Film Oscar, Pixar’s buoyant comedy adventure Up is another triumph for the studio behind Toy Story, Ratatouille and Wall·E – and it’s just as enchanting in 2D on DVD as it was in the cinema in 3D. Continuing the Pixar tradition of off-the-wall protagonists: the movie’s unlikely hero is retired balloon salesman Carl (voiced by Ed Asner), who ties thousands of balloons to his house and floats away in search of the adventure that was his late wife Ellie’s lifelong dream.
The grumpy widower then discovers that he has a stowaway on board, eight-year-old, eager-to-help boy scout Russell (newcomer Jordan Nagai). The pair fetch up in a lost world deep in the jungles of South America, where they encounter a pack of talking dogs, a giant flightless bird named Kevin and the famous, long-missing explorer (Christopher Plummer) who was Carl’s childhood hero.
The tale’s thrills and spills are handled with Pixar’s customary wit and verve, but the film’s best sequence may just be its quietest – a wordless montage that movingly tells the story of Carl and Ellie’s long childless marriage. First Up gently tugs at your heartstrings, then it sends you soaring aloft.
Released on 15th February.