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I think that would have been easier for me to swallow, seeing as the rats can already read and understand humans.

(But alas, then we'd lose that great moment in the rifle-toting grandmother scene when we hear what *she* hears as the rats are talking to each other.)

P.S.  I COULD BE WRONG.

 

Takin' 'er easy for all you sinners at lookingcloser.org. Also abiding at Facebook and Twitter.

 

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Hey, I love Charlotte. That device is executed so beautifully, I never blinked. The Phantom Tollbooth is full of crazy ideas that I accept whole-heartedly because the storytellers establish the rules, and the rules that can be broken, right from the get-go.

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Takin' 'er easy for all you sinners at lookingcloser.org. Also abiding at Facebook and Twitter.

 

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Charlotte's Web is both a sweet children's story and a broad satire on the power of advertising. What's harder to swallow than the animals' ability to talk to each other, and Charlotte's ability to write in her web, is the extraordinary gullibility of the human beings, who readily accept whatever she writes. (Mrs. Zuckerman's "It seems to me we have no ordinary spider" is as close to dissent as anyone gets.)

Interspecies communication is a fascinating topic in general, which is why so many books and films try to imagine various ways of achieving it. I have an e-mail acquaintance, Jim Nollman, who's part of a long-term research project seeking to communicate with whales. He plays musical instruments through underwater speakers and records the whales' replies.

We've all heard about Koko the gorilla and her sign language, but a story in Smithsonian last year mentions a researcher who's spent so much time with bonobos that she claims to be able to understand their chatter, and she gives a rather remarkable demonstration to the writer. (Unfortunately, it looks as though those paragraphs were cut from the online version of the article.)

There are by-the-numbers elements in Ratatouille. I remember thinking to myself, "Remy is the Character Caught between Two Worlds. Pretty soon now he's going to have to Integrate those Two Worlds, probably by bringing his family into the kitchen and showing them how to cook." Guess what happened five minutes later? But the film also throws us a few curveballs, including the hair-pulling, and it's an act of courage to do so. If the film went completely by the numbers, we'd be complaining about that.

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Oh my freakin' word!

Can he even DO that?

It's a promotional trailer, yes, but Pixar retains copyright to the material. If I were Pixar I wouldn't hesitate to sue the checkered pants -- and the tunic and the toque -- off Baehr's sorry behind for INSERTING HIMSELF INTO THE FOOTAGE.

And, uh, it's clear that he didn't get the penis joke. Of all the segments to put at the end of his clip...

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He's interviewed folks at Pixar before. Who knows... they may have even helped him with it.

Man, the more I think about it, the more disgusted I am. It's bad enough that he's declared the movie as some kind of grand affirmation of American capitalims. But now he's violating the movie's beautiful imagery with his own image.

I think I'm going to be sick.

Edited by Jeffrey Overstreet

P.S.  I COULD BE WRONG.

 

Takin' 'er easy for all you sinners at lookingcloser.org. Also abiding at Facebook and Twitter.

 

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"One of the great movies of all time."

Sheesh. Now I have to be hard on it.

I'm afraid to click on the "so much more where that came from" link, Jeffrey.

"What matters are movies, not awards; experiences, not celebrations; the subjective power of individual critical points of view, not the declamatory compromises of consensus." - Richard Brody, "Godard's Surprise Win Is a Victory for Independent Cinema," The New Yorker

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Baehr should have dressed up as Anton Ego. "If it isn't good, I spit it out." That would be a lot closer to the truth, methinks.

Oh, and all the DRINKING doesn't bother Baehr? Nor the fact that Linguini is an ILLEGITIMATE CHILD concieved in an act of FORNICATION? Maybe he overlooks those elements because he figures the characters, being French, cannot help themselves.

Edited by mrmando

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Well, here is his comprehensive examination of the film's content:

Content:

(C, CapCapCap, BB, L, V, AA, M)

  • Light Christian worldview with two references to faith,
  • one saying a mother is in Heaven because she believes in Heaven and another talking about godliness, both vague,
  • with very strong pro-capitalist content,
  • but the major message is that a great artist can come from anywhere,
  • not that everyone is a great artist but anyone can be a great artist and their abilities are not genetically or culturally or environmentally determined,
  • so it

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Takin' 'er easy for all you sinners at lookingcloser.org. Also abiding at Facebook and Twitter.

 

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Wow, we cherry-pick our moral content, don't we? It's immoral and criminal of Skinner to conceal Linguini's true identity and thus try to obtain the restaurant by fraud, just as it's immoral and criminal of the rats to bind and gag Skinner and the health inspector and stick them in the cooler. Guess Baehr was laughing so hard he forgot to take notes. :lol:

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A friend of mine used to work for Movieguide. His testimony makes me realize that we can't even be sure that the Movieguide review of Ratatouille was written by Baehr.

Edited by Jeffrey Overstreet

P.S.  I COULD BE WRONG.

 

Takin' 'er easy for all you sinners at lookingcloser.org. Also abiding at Facebook and Twitter.

 

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Did SG (not SDG) not even get a byline when he wrote for Baehr? You tellin' me Doctah Ted slaps his own name on other people's work, the way he inserts his pugnacious mug into Gusteau's kitchen?

Well, to quote a favorite play, "We might be shocked, but we wouldn't be surprised."

Anyway, the point is not who wrote the review, but that Movieguide's standards on objectionable content are being somewhat less than uniformly applied. "No nudity"? Um ... the RATS weren't wearing anything. :o And what about the brief exchange where a woman fires a pistol at her lover and then they start kissing passionately?

Edited by mrmando

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with very strong pro-capitalist content

So Skinner's ripping off Gasteau's name to sell trash is something to be applauded? Does B not get that capitalism is not seen as a good thing here?

A foreign movie can't be stupid.

-from the film
Armin

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Because the fish and toys don't pull anybody's hair? They can still read English and talk to each other.

Correction: SOME fish can read English. Specifically, Dori (who doesn't know she CAN read until she does it) and Peach (who reads the Aqua Scum manual). Marlin clearly CAN'T read -- AND he's clearly surprised that Dori CAN, which suggests that reading is at least an unusual talent for a fish to have. It seems kind of arbitrary, and clearly amounts to seams showing.

Hey, I love Charlotte. That device is executed so beautifully, I never blinked. The Phantom Tollbooth is full of crazy ideas that I accept whole-heartedly because the storytellers establish the rules, and the rules that can be broken, right from the get-go.

I don't blink either, but Charlotte's Web seems a little soft in the rules department too. The animals can understand humans, and at least one human, Fern, can understand the animals -- yet each species only ever eavesdrops on the other, as it were. Fern talks to her mother as if she were part of the Zuckerman barn community -- the animals are her friends, she says -- yet she never talks to the animals, nor they to her. They come to trust her, indirectly, because she's gentle and unthreatening, but that's the extent of it. Even Wilbur never talks to her.

The Phantom Tollbooth, of course, is in a class by itself, almost a genre by itself. :)

“I write because I don’t know what I think until I read what I say.” — Flannery O'Connor

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Correction: SOME fish can read English. Specifically, Dori (who doesn't know she CAN read until she does it) and Peach (who reads the Aqua Scum manual). Marlin clearly CAN'T read -- AND he's clearly surprised that Dori CAN, which suggests that reading is at least an unusual talent for a fish to have. It seems kind of arbitrary, and clearly amounts to seams showing.

And for what it's worth, that may have been my only real flinch in Finding Nemo. It bugged me there. And I remember mulling over that aspect of Charlotte's Web as a kid.

P.S.  I COULD BE WRONG.

 

Takin' 'er easy for all you sinners at lookingcloser.org. Also abiding at Facebook and Twitter.

 

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mrmando wrote:

: Can he even DO that?

: It's a promotional trailer, yes, but Pixar retains copyright to the material.

Maybe if he claimed "fair use" rights by calling his review a "parody". :)

: And, uh, it's clear that he didn't get the penis joke. Of all the segments to put at the end of his clip...

LOL! Hilarious!

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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Even stranger: In the Movieguide online review, the film's mention of "Heaven" is listed as a good thing. In Baehr's video review, it's mentioned as a problem. Further, in the online review, it's a "near-great film." In the video it's "one of the great films of all-time."

Since Peter blogged about this, I decided I'd link to him and add my own two-cents.

P.S.  I COULD BE WRONG.

 

Takin' 'er easy for all you sinners at lookingcloser.org. Also abiding at Facebook and Twitter.

 

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He's interviewed folks at Pixar before. Who knows... they may have even helped him with it.

You'd think that if they had, the editing wouldn't be so horrible. Nothing anyone could do about his acting, I suppose.

Correction: SOME fish can read English. Specifically, Dori (who doesn't know she CAN read until she does it) and Peach (who reads the Aqua Scum manual). Marlin clearly CAN'T read -- AND he's clearly surprised that Dori CAN, which suggests that reading is at least an unusual talent for a fish to have. It seems kind of arbitrary, and clearly amounts to seams showing.

Not to mention that it's clearly out of the ordinary for Dori to "speak whale," but nobody has any problem speaking to turtles. I should think mammals and amphibians would be equally foreign from a fish's point of view.

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This movie made me miss french bread. Easily one of my favorite Pixar's, probably just below Toy Story 2. Haven't seen Cars, so maybe Lightning McQueen could steal the brass ring, but Ratatouille seemed more rich and unique than any of the other works of the studio. I have to agree with the common complaints--a little saggy in the middle, and if I've seen one Pixar chase through the streets, I've seen them all. That animation, though, gorgeous--nice throwbacks to old school disney trying to animate sounds with the taste scenes.

Excellent voice work--didn't recognize Ian Holm at all. That said, I bet kids under five can't make it through this one. Who would they relate to? Linguini? Remy? I don't have a clue.

Gotta run, have some work to do in the kitchen! ;)

quick edit: loved, loved, loved the rat's shiny eyes in the dark--perfect balance of realism and a great visual cue as to how they are different and freaky to humans.

Edited by Buckeye Jones
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Hmmm.... Irony? This comes the day after Disney announces it's no smoking policy for future family oriented films...

Cartoon Produces New Wine Brand

In what amounts to a reverse product placement, a fictional wine depicted in the animated Disney/Pixar movie Ratatouille is scheduled to go on sale at Costco stores in 18 states next week. The chardonnay, 2004 Ratatouille, was produced from grapes from the Chateau de Messey in the Burgundy region of France. Reporting on the deal, Bloomberg News commented, "This licensed bottling ushers in what may be a whole new trend for wine and the movies." The wire service observed that the 2004 movie Sideways is credited with doubling sales of California pinot noir.

Edited by Baal_T'shuvah

Formerly Baal_T'shuvah

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Hmmm.... Irony? This comes the day after Disney announces it's no smoking policy for future family oriented films...

Ah, that's why there's a "Defense de Fumer" sign on the boat in Ratatouille...

The wire service observed that the 2004 movie Sideways is credited with doubling sales of California pinot noir.

Then again, look what it did to Merlot sales!

Let's Carl the whole thing Orff!

Do you know the deep dark secret of the avatars?

It's big. It's fat. It's Greek.

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Hmmm.... Irony? This comes the day after Disney announces it's no smoking policy for future family oriented films...

Alas, Disney has pulled the plug on the Ratatouille-themed wine.

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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Hmmm.... Irony? This comes the day after Disney announces it's no smoking policy for future family oriented films...

Alas, Disney has pulled the plug on the Ratatouille-themed wine.

There's some kind of cork pun that we're missing in reguards to this story.

Formerly Baal_T'shuvah

"Everyone has the right to make an ass out of themselves. You just can't let the world judge you too much." - Maude 
Harold and Maude
 

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