The "Ellie debate" spoiler alert

Before you read any further, if you haven’t seen “Up” first of all, what are you doing here? ha ha. Secondly, here’s your spoiler warning.

[spoiler]So I realize I’m about 5-6 years late to this debate, but I recently decided to watch “Up” and torture myself with that brilliant yet oh so sad opening scene with Carl and Ellie’s relationship. It gets me every time! Thus sparked the debate “Did Ellie have a miscarriage or was she barren/infertile”

There seems to be two camps to whether one or the other happened. If she miscarried, why wouldn’t they keep trying until they had a successful pregnancy? If she’s infertile, why would they jump into preparing a baby room BEFORE learning they were pregnant, only to learn that she’s infertile.

Both camps have a serious hole in their theories. “the miscarriage only theory” has a serious flaw in that miscarriages happen to couples all the time and couples will simply try again when it is safe to do so. So the idea the Carl and Ellie get pregnant, have a miscarriage and just decide to give up doesn’t sound right. A miscarriage is sad, but not devastating unless it happens much later in the pregnancy. Ellie wasn’t even showing a baby bump which means she was less than 12 weeks pregnant. Still sad, but nothing to make you throw your hands in the air and just give up on having kids altogether.

The “infertile” theory also has a major hole in the theory in that Carl and Ellie begin making a baby room before they’ve even become pregnant. There is something to the argument that Ellie is so energetic and spontaneous that maybe she just jumped into the idea of getting the baby room ready before getting pregnant, but that still seems odd. That’s usually something people jump into after they’ve realized they’re having a baby.

I believe there is a third theory that makes the most sense in my opinion. It is that Ellie is Fertile, but physically unable to carry a baby to full-term.
There are many women who can successfully get pregnant but cannot carry a baby to full term. Nowadays, women have the option of surrogate mothers or fertilization through “in vetro”. Ellie’s child bearing years were during a time BEFORE such medical advances were made available. You either could have kids or you couldn’t. It is not so uncommon a problem. My cousin’s wife and a wife of a friend both had different complications within their bodies where they could successfully get pregnant, but their bodies physically couldn’t carry the baby full-term without medical assistance. Both had “in vetro” and were able to have children. Other women need a surrogate mother whose body is capable of carrying the mother’s fertile egg to full-term.

Thus I think this makes the most sense to the story. Carl and Ellie were anticipating a baby…had become pregnant, started to prepare for the baby. Remember, most women don’t start showing a baby bump until 12-14 weeks into pregnancy. That’s 3-4 months, so the fact that Ellie never 'looked pregnant" is a moot point. They go to the doctor and learn that they’ve lost the baby AND that she cannot successfully have children…(double whammy). Ellie is depressed by the fact that they cannot build the family she had dreamed of, so Carl re-kindles her childhood dream of “Paradise Falls” so they begin focusing their efforts in a different way.

To me this makes the most sense and sometimes a great story is in the details that aren’t there. It leaves you to wonder what really happened and forces the viewer to come to their own conclusion.

I’m not sure anyone agrees with my theory or not, but it’s the only one that makes the most sense to me. To me it just didn’t make sense that Carl and Ellie would stop trying after one miscarriage…it also didn’t make sense that they would create a baby room without knowing they were pregnant or not. The third theory ties both together and fills all holes in story and adds an even stronger emotional tie to their relationship.[/spoiler]