Symbolism in UP
The house is where Carl and Ellie first met each other as kids, where they chose to spend the rest of their lives together and turned it into the home of their dreams. As the movie gets going Carl's house symbolizes his connection with Ellie and how he is holding on to her memory by staying with the house, even if it’s inconvenient or unnecessary. Carl isolates himself from the rest of the world and his house seems a refuge from everyone and everything that want something from him. At first, the house just sits there, resisting everything that wants it gone. Representing Carl and how he does not want to budge, how he’s determined to accomplish what Ellie always dreamed of , just like a house’s job is to stand strong. There’s a level of personification with his house, but the he’s not materialistic and his attitude is directly linked to the house and how he values it as important. Even though it seems to anchor him from moving on with his life. Scenes where shown:
When Russel comes to his doorstep and wants to help the elderly – Carl slams the door of the house, because he doesn’t want to let anyone in, even if they’re trying to help. In the middle of a construction site- It appears big and strong and will not move for anyone. He doesn’t have Ellie anymore, but he needs something to ground him. The balloons carry him and the house up and away- Portraying the fact that he’s holding on to the house, it’s a weight he chooses to lift but doesn’t have to. While it’s on fire- Showing how if Carl hadn’t have gone out of his way for Russel, his home would never have been ruined. But it’s also showing the fact that helping others and opening up to happiness with burn away your anchors and burdens.
Kevin, who turns out to be a mother with many offspring – symbolises life itself. Muntz obsessively tries to capture Kevin (life) and so it escapes him. He’s wasted his life because he is so obsessed with fame that whilst seeking it...
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