Monday, 27 May 2013

Ratatouille (2007) - ★★★★

Director: Brad Bird, Jan Pinkava
Voice Actors: Patton Oswalt, Ian Holm, Lou Romano, Brian Dennehy, Peter O'Toole, Brad Garrett, Janeane Garofolo

Ratatouille is such a wonderful film. I think it probably has the least magic involved out of any Disney movie, yet it's more magical than most. Cooking suddenly becomes an enchanting world, where taste and smell are the two most important senses to a person (or rat). Hell, it made me want to eat and cook all night long. (I just ended up making jam on toast, but I was damn proud of what I achieved). I thoroughly enjoyed this movie, which won Best Animated Feature at the Academy Awards. I wouldn't rate it one of Disney's best, but it's an awesome movie none the less.

I adore the story in Ratatouille, which gives a voice and soul to one of my favorite rodents, the rat. We follow a small rat named Remy, who has an enhanced sense of taste and smell. In this world, rats can understand human writing and speech, which makes the story easier to tell. Anyway, Remy is sick of being a rat and stealing from humans. He falls in love with food and cooking when he reads and watches recipes from Gusteau, a famous French chef. Circumstances lead him to Gusteau's restaurant, where he meets a young garbage boy named Linguini. With Remy's cooking skills and Linguini's job in the kitchen, together they work their way up in the bustling world of French chef's.

Cutest rat since Cinderella!
Patton Oswalt is one of my favorite comedians, so I love that he does the voice of Remy the rat. I really like this character, who is so cute when seen through human eyes, then so human when we get to hear his thoughts. The partnership between Remy and Linguini is freaking hilarious, touchingly beautiful, and absolutely magical. There have been many couples and partnerships throughout Disney's history, and I think that this is one of the best.

The greatest thing about this movie is the way it shows cooking as some kind of magical thing. I guess to some people it truly is; but it certainly makes me want to become a chef! However, seeing this film I don't think I'd be cut out for that kind of world. For me, the highest point in the film was whenever Remy was cooking, particularly when he cooked Ratatouille.

"Not everyone can cook." - Evil Food Critic
When I found out that Brad Garret (Robert from Everybody Loves Raymond) did the voice of Gusteau, my esteem for him went up a few notches. My goodness was he awesome. He played the conscience of Remy, and ended up being my favorite character (even if he was imaginary for most of the movie). Oh, the villain was a food critic voiced by one of my favorite actors, Peter O'Toole. Now this is definitely one of my personal favorite Disney villains, because he has an epiphany and delivers an important message to anyone who criticizes anything (be it food or film). Oh, and the saying 'Anyone can cook' is just awesome!

The French music and Parisian setting made the atmosphere romantic and beautiful. Ratatouille has received near-perfect scores across the board from critics, which I don't completely understand. I guess this movie was perfect in a lot of ways, I just wasn't fully entertained the whole way through. In my opinion, it doesn't come close to being as good as The Lion King or Beauty and the Beast. Well, I really liked this movie, but I didn't love it.

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