Ratatouille (2007)

THE SCOOP
Director: Brad Bird
Plot: Remy is a young rat in the French countryside who arrives in Paris, only to find out that his cooking idol is dead. When he makes an unusual alliance with a restaurant's new garbage boy, the culinary and personal adventures begin despite Remy's family's skepticism and the rat-hating world of humans.

Genre: Animation/Comedy/Family
Awards: Won 1 Oscar - best animated feature. Nom. for 4 Oscars - original screenplay, sound, sound editing, score.
Runtime: 110min
Rating: G

TRAILER:

IN RETROSPECT

The newest Pixar offering on the menu. Ratatouille. Bon appetit. Brad Bird's third feature-length animation motion picture goes to show that Pixar is still at the forefront in digital animation technology. A direct improvement from Cars, which was the weakest project the studio has produced, Ratatouille goes for story and character development rather than slam-bang action and adventure of epic proportions like in The Incredibles. The result is an almost elegiac, impressionistic feel that radiates in Ratatouille.

The concept is ingenious - a rat (Remy) harbors dreams of becoming a world-class chef. How Remy does it? He makes acquaintance with a restaurant garbage boy and together they form an incredible partnership, cooking up palatable dishes like no one's business. However, they face enormous pressure from unforgiving food critics to scheming chefs. The animation is spot-on, weighing every little twitch and quiver of each character's facial expressions to stunningly accurate proportions. The texture and color of things such as bread and cooking tools, plus the interior of the restaurant kitchen are presented so realistically that it becomes animated art.

Ratatouille is not as thrilling as Finding Nemo, nor is it as poignant as Monsters, Inc. But it is every bit a good story as either. Unfortunately though, it lacks a powerful, satisfying ending that slightly diminish the film's overall potency to enthrall our senses. Ratatouille is one of 2007's better films, and is Brad Bird's love letter to Paris, the city of exquisite dining. While there are areas to be improved on, Ratatouille gives us all the richness and freshness Pixar films offer, while simultaneously forging a new path for future animated pictures to follow. Delicious!

GRADE: B+

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