I have never been the biggest fan of Disney Princesses. It’s not that I don’t like them or their stories but I usually liked a different character (like Maleficent, not sure what that says about me) in the movie more or I just appreciated and loved the story.
I guess that is why I never found the love stories all that appealing either. I never dreamed of being swept away to a castle or meeting my true love in some fantastic storybook romance. But that changed in 2009 when I finally found a Disney couple that I not only loved but identified with completely.
Carl and Ellie are such a beautiful couple. They meet as children and bond over a common interest — their love of adventure. The next few minutes of Up, scored beautifully by Michael Giacchino, make me tear up every time I watch them. We watch Carl and Ellie get married, make a home, suffer loss, and grow old. We also see Carl lose Ellie, which sets up the premise of the rest of the film.
After going after what he thought Ellie always wanted, Carl learns that he and Ellie never missed out on the adventure like he thought they did. Sure they never made it to Paradise Falls like they had dreamed, but they did have the best kind of adventure — a life together. They worked along side one another, held hands, went on picnics. The every day things that so many take for granted.
I have my own Carl. We are also a family of two and always will be. And while for a time I found that fact a little sad, I now celebrate it. I am lucky. I have someone who will sit and watch Disney movies with me, to hold hands with, and to dream with. We got married, built a home, had our struggles, and came out loving each other more. And while me may never go on some of the grand adventures that we dream of, that’s okay. We get to be together and live our every day adventures.
So no, Carl and Ellie aren’t the typical fairy tale romance that some dream about, they are something even better. A beautiful example that while there are downs, it is the ups that make life beautiful.