Release Date: 29 June 2007
Director: Brad Bird and Jan Pinkava
Production Company: Pixar Animation Studios, Walt Disney Pictures
Remy, a rat with a heightened sense of small learns to appreciate fine foods and cooking from television programs and cookbooks of the famed chef Auguste Gusteau. When circumstance bring Remy to Paris, a vision of the late Gusteau guides him to Gusteau’s restaurant where Remy begins to pursue the dream of becoming a cook. Remy is paired with the restaurant’s young garbage boy Linguini, and learns that he can control his body like a marionette by pulling his hair (that sounds creepier than it appears in the movie) and together they make successful new dishes.
Though the stakes are low it touches on issues such as balancing commitments to family with pursuing one’s dreams, and expanding one’s perspectives. It’s also surprisingly educational about both the bridage de cuising and colonies of rats. One disappointment of the film is that almost all of the characters – rats and kitchen staff alike – are male, although the sole female character Colette comments on the difficulty of women making it in the culinary field, a seeming meta-commentary on the movie itself. Overall, it’s a cute movie and beautifully animated and I enjoyed it.