if you had to think of a silly thing to do, taking a three-week-old baby and a not-quite-two-year-old to the cinema might be pretty high up the list. We tried it this afternoon, and it wasn’t even one of those special sessions aimed at harried parents. We prepared ourselves for a quick escape by sitting at the end of a row and near the exit. But in the event Hugh was rapt for the whole film – the part when he seemed inclined to get bored and restive was the ad session at the beginning – and little Sprout slept for the first half and fed through the second. A woman in the row in front was enormously interested in Sprout and asked to hold him. It occurred to me she might be a kidnapper but I let her anyway and was relieved when she handed him back. Then she spent the opening of the film reading the credits aloud, not quite fluently, to her male companion.
The movie we saw was the latest Pixar offering, Up. It concerns an old man who attaches a vast number of balloons to his house and uses them to fly to South America, accidentally taking a boy scout with him. This bizarre premise doesn’t give much indication of what an extremely sweet, funny, and well-observed film it is, touching without being the least bit saccharine, and with an exciting plot that doesn’t substitute bangs and crashes for character. There were a lot of children in the cinema (no others as young as ours) but Up definitely offers plenty to the adults; more if anything, as I think it takes an adult sensibility to appreciate the background that is sketched in for the old man, the loving but childless marriage and the dreams that remained dreams. Highly recommended.