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gau dog
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Post by gau dog » Mon Jul 09, 2007 4:30 pm

Just saw it. Nice movie. I really like how Pixar has made rats in a rat's natural world as opposed to the other approach of rats living in a rat made humanlike world (like Flushed Away). Most everything turned out fine in the end. I felt Linguini and Colette fell in love rather abruptly but that's how it often happens in the movies. Her role is kind of unnecessary, actually. But I do appreciate the attempt of including a strong female presence. Remy's direct puppet control of Remy seemed really illogical but entertaining. Then again, it should be easy to suspend my belief in a movie where rats are as smart as humans. Linguini's character does seem to exist just for Remy's sake but Remy really is the main protagonist of the movie. Everyone else is just there to serve his story. The animation, direction, were great. The fur was so realistic. Some of Remy's rat poses were really cute.

I did find it to be mostly lighthearted entertainment, except for Remy's dad rat trap conversation. That extra touch of reality though, good to address, probably would've been better toned down for this movie. On Remy's cooking, he's not trying to make art for art's sake or great art, he's just making good food. I was mostly under the impression that he cooked cause he loves doing it. Linguini didn't have that passion, hardly seemed to care for it at all. All he seemed to want was a stable life. On "anyone can cook" I think that was meant for Remy. "Even a rat can cook". He's the one with Gusteau hallucinations. Though I agree it really would be better if Remy taught or attempted to teach Linguini to cook and run on his own. That would change the story and probably create less conflict however. Remy's dish to Ego was a simple dish appealing to his non critic childhood tastes. I thought the flashback transition was almost funny since the camera truck/zoom was so quick. Should've been more gentle. As entertainment, I found Ratatouille to be a fine movie overall. Not Pixar's best but I can look past imperfections. Sorta midrange Pixar.

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Post by squirpy » Mon Jul 09, 2007 4:47 pm

haha, I thought that that truck back for the flashback was supposed to be funny. The entire theater erupted into laughter when it happened.
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dik pose
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Post by dik pose » Mon Jul 09, 2007 5:05 pm

The zoom out was meant to be funny, everyone in my theater laughed too.

I liked this film. Never was bored. Never fell out of the story.

Something I really like in Pixar films, they take their time, there are no rushed scenes. Things play out, are well paced... its a beautiful thing.

My roomate and I were saying this is like a metaphor for Disney/Pixar (We didnt figure it all out, here are the broad strokes)

A world class chef, Gusteau/Walt Disney, loves what he does and involves the world in his process/love, dies, then his succesor is someone who wants to commercialize everything with that man's image/reputation, they cheapen Gusteau...all the old cooks are still in the kitchen, but they are now doing everything by formula, by the book, they are stifled, not letting their creativity out...

Then the Rat (Pixar) comes in, he embodies the spirit of Gusteau, but looks radically different than what everyone is used to...

Thats as far as I thought, didnt want to keep thinking about it... haha.. I enjoyed the film, kids in the theater were all laughing, and at the end, people clapped. Brad Bird makes solid films.

gau dog
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Post by gau dog » Tue Jul 10, 2007 1:23 am

The theater I saw it had a small audience of mostly parents and little kids. I felt like laughing at the flashback truck but I don't remember anyone else laughing. I mean the flashback itself wasn't really jokey. Even though it does make the moment lighter, I can't say I feel the Ego's flashback and reaction works best as a joke.

Yeah, I also thought a little bit about the commercialization of Gusteau was a slant against cheapening and exploitation of Disney but not too much. I felt it functioned more as a general statement against those sort of commercializations but actually, I recognized something about it. A more direct lampoon. I was reminded of actor Dick Van Patten's products, whose canned dog food I've remembered because of his silly dress ups (specially the Asian cone hat one).

From Wikipedia:
Van Patten was in the news in early December 2005 for lending his name to Natural Balance, a line of high-end dog food that is intended to be indistinguishable from stews and other dishes (or table scraps) that are normally intended for human consumption. He has demonstrated this by eating, on at least one occasion, his own brand of dog food in tandem with some pet.
Mmmmm.... dog food.

Josh Mauser
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Post by Josh Mauser » Thu Jul 12, 2007 5:46 pm

Ha! Nice find, gua dog! That's hilarious.

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Sarah Mensinga
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Post by Sarah Mensinga » Sun Jul 22, 2007 6:01 pm

Michel Gagne wrote:But then again, I'm certainly no movie critic. I like Star Wars episode 2 and 3 better than 5 and 6. Starcrash is one of my all time favorite movie. What do I know?
Ha ha, I love Starcrash too! Nothing is better then villain ships shaped like angry fists, rainbow coloured stars, and Christopher Plummer giving crazy speeches. :D

As for Ratatouille, it was beautiful. I'm still a little undecided on the story, parts I loved and parts I thought needed a little more tension (cooking frozen food forever didn't seem like THAT terrible a fate). But I thoroughly enjoyed watching it.

I seem to end up working on projects where being funny is more important then telling a cohesive story and the humor that is in the film becomes all slap-your-knee gags and topical one liners, rather than anything character driven and/or visual. It's so nice to see that Pixar still has such a wonderful handle on that.

It's also nice to see character designs that are so elegantly simple and so animation friendly.

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Post by SonOfaRich » Wed Aug 01, 2007 12:47 am

I saw this a few days ago finally. I liked it, but definitely one of the weaker Pixar films for me. The animation was top notch and amazing. A lot more action than I expected, but excellently done. These action scenes with rats are way better than all the action scenes Michael Bay has done put together.

What I didn't like was the story. It was more of a message than a story. Similar to when you open up a fortune cookie and you end up getting a statement instead of a fortune.

My favorite moment is when the Grim Eater tastes the ratatouille for the first time. I thought that was one of the best reactions ever on film.
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Post by Tony » Wed Aug 01, 2007 10:50 pm

Okay, okay. A month late, I know. I'm sure everyone's already forgotten about this movie. But I just saw it, and went into it knowing your generally negative viewpoint on the film, Kazu, for better or for worse. On the one hand, I kept trying to find things wrong with it. On the other, I probably paid closer attention to it than I would have otherwise.

I think I watch movies the same way as Michel - I take away an intuitive impression. And Ratatouille left me generally happy. The conflict between Remy's pursuit of his passion and his dedication to his family struck home really strongly with me: SDCC made it clear that it's sort of necessary to move to LA (or NY, to a lesser extent) in order to really reach your maximum potential in the animation industry. And yet, that would mean moving away from my family and friends. That Remy gets to successfully combine the two was personally touching and heart-warming.

However, I did have troubles with the critic. So much of the conflict is based around the artificial construction of the critic system. That this serves as so much motivation IS a little disturbing, in the same way that I feel really uncomfortable about people who make money lending or managing money - it's a system built on a system built on a system, and it's all so artificial that it's worrisome and (personally speaking) disgusting.

You gotta give it to them a little bit, though - Ego's monologue near the end derailed a lot of the awkwardness I felt about the critic mechanism.

Rohitiyer makes a good point - "Why should we start expecting things from stories?" and "
Isn't the whole reason behind reading or watching someone else's story to see what they want have to say? How they see the world?"
I agree with that, but Ratatouille was confusing in this respect. They trumpet "Anyone can cook", but... show that that's not the case. I, too, wanted Linguini to learn how to be a great cook and prove that statement true. But he didn't. So what the hell does that mean? Like you said, Kazu - they say different things than they show. They say "anyone can develop the necessary skill" but show that you need to be born with the talent, apparently. Which is something that I wonder about a lot. When I was in school, the most interesting thing was not seeing the really talented dudes make more great drawings, but seeing how much the... uh... less "gifted" artists grew. Which is why I wanted Linguini to learn to cook.

But even if he DID do that, they never set up that he would WANT to do that, so if he learned, might that not also seem wrong?

The animation was gorgeous, of course. I did feel like it was a bit too fluid, and could have used a bit more "crispness", though. Whatever that means. Describing animation in words is like trying to describe taste with animation. If I want it done correctly, I'll have to ask Michel.

All that aside, Dik's interpretation has GOT to be spot-on. Ha ha ha, well done, sir!

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Post by Tony » Wed Aug 01, 2007 11:03 pm

I just read what I posted, and I don't feel like it reflects how I felt about the film. It really was a beautiful piece of work... I loved the relationship between Linguini and Remy, however much of it was motivated by the critic mechanism. The girl's character was so much fun to watch, too, that it's a shame her romance with Linguini doesn't seem fully motivated.

Congratulations Enrico, Michel, Ronnie, and the rest of the team. You guys have done an amazing job. The energy and originality in all the sequences - I don't know how you guys do it. That sequence where Remy is scrambling around the kitchen is just visual motion poetry. And the rendering technicians - oh my god. Someone give those dudes a raise. Just Wow.

I'm looking forward to a second viewing!

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Post by Nunumi » Sun Aug 12, 2007 8:29 am

There was a really nice attention they made in the credits that really pleased me as an animator (even if I did not work on this movie at all!!!).

At the end of the credits was written: Guarantee: 100% Genuine Animation! No motion capture ...

Because some parts of the public tend to minimise the work of animators. Especially when it's too pretty! "Gosh, this animation is so good! It must be rotoscopy..." >__<

I just hope some people actually stayed long enough to read it though. Especially bank people!!!

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Dresden Codak
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Post by Dresden Codak » Fri Aug 24, 2007 7:55 am

I feel that it would be appropriate to share my only personal experience with this film.
My Brother: "So I saw that movie Ratatouille. It's actually really good."

Me: "Well, I don't watch rat movies."

Brother: "No, you'd like this one. It has a really good twist ending."

Me: "Just tell me, I'm not going to watch it."

Brother: "Ratatouille gets eaten at the end!"

Me: "Yeah?"

Brother: "His human best friend is starving to death and Ratatouille says, 'I am a great chef, I do what I must' and he cooks himself!"

Me: "Huh, that is a good ending."

30 minutes later, after the conversation had long ended

Brother: "That's not really what happens."

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