June 30th, 2007

Ariel Union

Ratatouille (contains spoilers)

Last night we saw Ratatouille, and it's a delight!  I love Brad Bird movies, but I wasn't sure what to think going in since this movie wasn't Bird's concept from the start.  Well, it didn't seem to hurt!  I still like The Iron Giant and The Incredibles better, but this is highly recommended nonetheless.

One thing I really like about this movie is that it has the courage to stick to the concept, even when it makes you uncomfortable.  The whole idea behind this movie is that a rat (Remy) wants to be a chef.  That's easy to deal with when it's just one rat who we know and like and agree is fairly clean.  But late in the movie (SPOILER WARNING), there's a scene where hundreds of rats have taken over the kitchen (under Remy's direction) and are preparing meals for an entire restaurant.  It's kinda skeevey, but that's the point.  The movie has already established that rats have human-level intelligence and they can be clean when they want to be, so it should be alright for them to be swarming all over a kitchen, right? 

But something in your brain says that it's not OK, even when you see them doing cute little things while cooking like riding a butter stick around a hot pan.  You've already bought the premise -- you've been rooting for Remy for quite a while now -- so why aren't you down with this logical consequence?  It's a weird dissonance that leaves you a little uneasy even while you are being entertained, and that's a great thing for a film to do...