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This Way Up (2008)

 -  Animation | Short  -  2008 (USA)
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A.T Shank & Son have a bad day at the parlour when a falling boulder flattens their hearse. Emotional and literal pitfalls lie in wait for the odd couple as they make their way cross ... See full summary »


(as Smith & Foulkes) , (as Smith & Foulkes)
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Title: This Way Up (2008)

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 5 wins. See more awards »


A.T Shank & Son have a bad day at the parlour when a falling boulder flattens their hearse. Emotional and literal pitfalls lie in wait for the odd couple as they make their way cross country with just a coffin for company. This short animated caper puts the fun back into funeral as their journey and relationship unravel on an epic scale. Written by Anonymous

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Laying the dead to rest has never been so much trouble.


Animation | Short



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2008 (USA)  »

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This Way Up  »

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1.78 : 1
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User Reviews

Is it in bad taste? I dunno. But it sure was well made.
16 February 2009 | by (Bradenton, Florida) – See all my reviews

Like last year, I went to a special showing of the Oscar-nominated animated short films. However, unlike last year, in addition to the nominees, several "commended films" were also shown. In this review I'll make my predictions, though if it's anything like last year's choices, I'll probably once again pick the wrong shorts as my favorite for the award.

This film is a computer generated short from the United Kingdom. It's about two morticians who are out to retrieve a body for burial. However, again and again, events conspire against them and nothing seems to go right. All of the mistakes make this a highly creative and funny film but I also assume some people might find it all in bad taste--though that's exactly why I liked the film. Seeing them lose the corpse and it getting stuck in a tree, taking a side trip to the after life and all the crazy Looney Toon-like stunts made me laugh repeatedly--something none of the other shorts did even once.

Overall, I think the award for Best Animated Short is probably between this film and PRESTO--though LE MAISON EN PETITS CUBES seems to have a shot at the prize as well. THIS WAY UP is very daring with its dark content, exceptionally different CGI look and sense of humor. If the Academy is willing to pick such a dark toned film, it can easily win. PRESTO is a very good CGI film, with the best artwork of the five films and a story that seems inspired by Tex Avery. It's not surprising that it looks so good, as it's a Pixar short. However, THIS WAY UP seemed more creative and different--whereas PRESTO seemed like a 1950s cartoon brought to life using CGI.

Considering my track record last year, I assume THIS WAY UP won't win. It's a shame, as I really liked it and would love to see more from the sick folks who made it!

UPDATE: LA MAISON EN PETITS CUBES was the winner this year. Not surprisingly, I got this one wrong but at least saw the film as a strong contender.

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