We spent a hot summer day in the movies yesterday to see Pixar's latest masterpiece, Ratatouille. It was a really good movie. But the kids hated it. Our younger one fell asleep, and the older one cried to leave (we convinced her there was ice cream in her future if she stayed, so she did). Frankly, I could see her point. It wasn't scary. But it was adult-themed. Most of the characters talked with a French accent, and she didn't follow it. The jokes and humor were way, way above her head, and the overall theme of French cooking had no basis on her everyday life. Add that to the fact that the head chef was a meanie, and she wanted outta there.
I thought it was a good movie. Not Pixar's best, but a couple of things resonated with me. First, this movie really seems to be a cross-over for Pixar, where they successfully draw both animals/characters AND humans. In Toy Story, the humans were clunky looking. In The Incredibles, they were purposefully cartoonish. In this movie, they looked right. Second, the cooking theme was fabulous. Anyone with a sense for the kitchen would love this movie, and the writers made this a major point of the movie with a theme of "Anyone can cook."
On the flip side, the idea of rats in the kitchen just didn't work for me. In Bugs life, the ants were cute. In this movie, the rats were, well, rats. And seeing a thousand of them flowing into a restaurant was just ooky.
I will have to see it again, though. If only to recall which character was played by John Ratzenberger. Supposedly it was someone named Mustafa, but I don't recall who that was.