Posted at 5:09 PM on July 9, 2007
by Euan Kerr
I ventured somewhat nervously into a theater filled with the kindergarten set late Saturday afternoon to see "Ratatouille." It was an effort a) to keep a couple of teenage houseguests amused, b) to get out of the heat, and c) to see what all the fuss is about.
The place was pretty crammed and after our arrival we were forced to do the wretched sit-down-in-front-of-a-little-kid-because-it's-the-only-seat-open deal.
Immediately the whispers begin "Sweetie? Do you want to move?" You feel like such a bully.
Anyway, everyone got comfortable, and in a place they could see and "Ratatouille" began.
It's the story of Remy, a rat who has an incredible palate. While his family says he should just concentrate on helping the rat colony (he is the poison detector) he wants to create great dishes, and work in one of the fine kitchens of France.
Being a rat, and as a result a walking health violation, this seems like an unobtainable goal for Remy. His story unfolds with just the right blend of jokes, wacky characters and plot twists to keep all ages engaged.
What a treat! Beautiful images (Disney, even in it's Pixar form, has always had a thing about Paris,) great humor which works on kid and adult levels, and even a great, non-mushy message about maintaining a balance in the different parts of your life.
And how strange to go home and watch a DVD of "Venus" that night and hear the voice of the nasty food critic come out of Morris the randy old actor as Peter O'Toole romps through both roles.