Up is without a doubt Pixar's most emotional film to date, and there was a noticeable improvement on the villain front. The Incredibles still remains my favourite though. I thought the beginning retrospect where Carl Fredricksen enters the rickety, sun-lit house as a child - the moment that defines the rest of his life - so very, very tender and saturated with a reality not yet seen before in a Pixar film. It just feels like someone's real, full-blooded memory, filled with sublimity and pain; with the unutterably beautiful gifts given by God.
Unfortunately the entire story is so lacking. The house going up with the balloons...yes, I can go along with that...the man and kid walking through the jungle with the house tethered to them...sure, I can follow...the strange dogs with voice-collars...er, uhm, okay, I can go along with that (cheek a little bitten)...the dogs flying the airplanes...that's it, nope, forget it; I am not willing to accept that. My elastic whimsy cord has been snapped at that point.
There is a truthful, "we-gotcha" moment, when the kid Russell responds to Carl's indignation towards Russell's calling his mother by her first name. You don't see that, well, pretty much ever in a popular film today. There's Carl's decision to embark on a new adventure. Good stuff. But the story itself feels threadbare.
The Incredibles remains on top. And I don't have a second favourite from Pixar. Too many mixed bags.