It’s been 10 years since one of Pixar’s most underrated films premiered and we’re still not over it. What we all thought would be the sweet adventure story of an old man who befriends a young boy scout and they fly away in a balloon house together, caught us all off-guard in 2009 when it turned into a sob-fest in the first 10 minutes.
No one can take us on an emotional rollercoaster quite like the Disney-Pixar team (see: Toy Story 3) and they certainly leaned into that in this movie. Not only did that opening montage tell a Nicholas Sparks-level beautifully tragic love story in the span of four minutes and 18 seconds (yes, seriously), the whole movie kept us laughing, crying, wanderlusting and mentally filing away hilarious quotes for later (don’t even pretend you don’t yell “Squirrel!” every time someone gets distracted).
In honour of this great Pixar creation on its 10th birthday, here are all the best moments that made us laugh, cry or otherwise feel some type of way.
You know the one we mean—the four tightest minutes in cinematic history where we were made to fall in love with a young couple, then watched them experience joy, heartbreak, hope, disappointment, monotony and every other human emotion over the course of their lifetime until the whole “till death do us part” thing became painfully real. Grab a tissue and watch it all again.
What better way to lighten the mood after RIPPING OUR HEARTS OUT OF OUR CHESTS than with a character whose every move is adorable and relatable to everyone’s inner child (and outer adult). That kid is infinitely quotable, especially when we’re tired, our knees hurt and we have to go to the bathroom (even though you just asked us five minutes ago).
There are quotable movie moments and then there are lines that seep into our cultural consciousness to the point where they’re a universally accepted shorthand for describing a real-life occurrence (and there’s your sociology lesson for the day). The “Squirrel!” line from Up is one of those movie moments. From now until the end of time, everyone will understand that yelling “Squirrel!” means “You were telling me something and then got distracted.”
And we have lift off
Who hasn’t tried to do the math on how many balloons it would take to fly away from their responsibilities? We still get butterflies when we watch Carl release the balloons on his and Ellie’s rainbow house and lift off on his adventure. Like watching Rapunzel’s hair in Tangled or all those individually rendered snowflakes in Frozen, all we can say is “Wow, Pixar, wow.”
Cone of shame
Yes, this is what we’ve referred to these cones as for the past 10 years. Sorry, doggos of the world, but those are cones of shame.
Kevin, the chocolate-loving snipe
Before there was Hei Hei from Moana, our favourite colourful Pixar bird was Kevin—the chocolate-loving, overly-protective snipe who takes a liking to Russell. She was out there breaking down gender normative stereotypes in 2009 with her creative name.
Arrival at Paradise Falls
If Ellie and Carl’s adventure book hadn’t inspired enough wanderlust in us already, Carl and Russell’s arrival at Paradise Falls sent us straight to our laptops to find cheap flights to South America. While Paradise Falls is, unfortunately, not a real location—it’s a composite of several awe-inspiring Venezuelan waterfalls—you can still get the Up experience in the place that inspired the Pixar design team. Sign us up!
“Because I love you…”
Ever need an excuse for being a little too clingly? Make some puppy dog eyes and hit ‘em with this Dug quote—“I was hiding under your porch because I love you.” That will melt even the iciest of hearts (maybe Anna should have employed this technique rather than trying to force the snowman building thing).
The Ellie Badge
If the opening of Up broke your heart, the ending fused the pieces back together (and we wept the whole time). Russell was going to stoically accept his “Assisting the Elderly” badge without his dad, but then Carl stepped in at the last minute to award it to him along with “The Ellie Badge” while the same music from the opening montage plays in the background? Give me a break! Here come the waterworks!
So, time for a re-watch?