Reviewed on 2007 July 10
Pixar movies haven’t disappointed me yet and based on their track record, I don’t foresee them letting me down. Anything that can make me think a rat is cute — and quiet a theater full of small, sugar-fueled children — is a work of art.
Remy (voiced by Patton Oswalt) is an urbane French rat, as sophisticated (for a rodent) as the cognac of the same name. Remy’s palate impresses his huge clan enough for his daddy to draft him as poison detector for their food. It also gets him in hot water with his family — they think he’s putting on airs and can’t understand why he won’t just eat garbage like they do. That would be anathema to Remy, who dreams up new uses for saffron and walks on his hind feet so nothing on his forepaws alters the taste of his food. He’s as hygienic as he is finicky. Good thing since he dreams of being a cook.
Remy is thrilled when he winds up in Paris at the famed Gusteau’s restaurant… until he sees the new employee Linguini (Lou Romano). The fuzzy little gourmet throws a blood clot when he sees Linguini almost destroying a batch of soup and nearly gets himself caught in the process.
The vocal talents and animation are always special in Pixar films, but I think this story line was rivaled only by The Incredibles. The creators of the movie actually spent some time in Paris getting a feel for the city, and it comes through in the finished product. There are morals but we’re tapped with them, not beaten over the head. And yes, there’s a cute short before the main feature.
Four chocolate morsels.