What Goes Up

What Goes Up Information

What Goes Up is an American comedy-drama film distributed by Sony Pictures Entertainment starring Hilary Duff, Steve Coogan, Josh Peck, Olivia Thirlby, and Molly Shannon, directed by Jonathan Glatzer and co-written by Glatzer and Robert Lawson. Coogan also serves as an executive producer. It premiered on May 8, 2009 at the 3rd Annual Buffalo Niagara Film Festival. What Goes Up was released in the US through Sony Pictures and Three Kings Productions in select theaters on May 29, 2009 and expanded to more theaters the following week. Cities included Los Angeles, New York, Las Vegas, Buffalo, Boston and Chicago. The movie grossed $5,290 in its opening weekend.


Upon arriving in Concord, New Hampshire in January 1986 to cover the hometown hooplah for the looming Space Shuttle Challenger launch where Concord teacher Christa McAuliffe is among the mission's crew, reporter Campbell Babbitt (Steve Coogan) decides to call an old college friend, only to discover an apparent suicide. Babbitt, who has his own ethical baggage, gravitates toward his friend's high-school students in hopes of finding an unsung hero story about a teacher who made a permanent impact on the social misfits of the school. Instead, he discovers a group of dysfunctional students, outcasts led by a narcissistic seductress (Hilary Duff), a repressed voyeur (Josh Peck), and a scheming pregnant teen (Olivia Thirlby). In a gradual reversal of roles, Babbitt soon finds himself learning from this unusual group of kids.



Critical response was generally negative, with Metacritic calculating an average rating of 22% based on 10 reviews. Based on 32 reviews collected by Rotten Tomatoes, it has an average rating of 16% with an average score of 3.3/10. Variety described it as "a pointless and pretentious drama that -- given its title and direct linkage to the 1986 Challenger shuttle disaster -- nearly adds tasteless to its unflattering hat trick." The New York Times said "There's some nice filmmaking tucked inside "What Goes Up," a muddle of moods and intentions." The Chicago Tribune, Hollywood Reporter, Los Angeles Times and several other publications also panned the film. Some critics, however, did offer positive reviews. Andrew O'Hehir of Salon.com describes the film as "a nifty little tragicomedy... dark, droll and sentimental in roughly the correct proportions." Noel Murray from The AV Club said, "Glatzer and [co-writer] Lawson show a deep understanding of how common ideals can hold even a community of outsiders together." Pete Hammond of Hollywood.com called it "a darkly funny and wonderfully twisted story that marches to its own surprising beat." Former WNBC critic Jeffery Lyons, who called it a "wonderful little film," invited the movie to be screened at the film festival he curates in Breckenridge, CO in June, 2009.


The DVD was released in the US on June 16, 2009. It features a revised cut from the theatrical release, with ten minutes longer with different music and a reordering of some of the scenes. The film was also released in the Netherlands with an alternative cover of Hilary Duff from a photo shoot in 2005. Also in the opening sequence, the film has an alternate title as 'Safety Glass'.


See What Goes Up: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack for more information

Hilary Duff has recorded a song called "Any Other Day" for the film. Other artists featured in the movie include Roddy Bottum, David Bowie, Nathan Khyber and Electrelane. The soundtrack includes bonus tracks from The Innocent Bystanders which were not in the film. The soundtrack was released on iTunes on April 29, 2009, and later on the Nokia Music Store. The physical CD was released on July 14, 2009.

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