Wilbur the pig is scared of the end of the season, because he knows that come that time, he will end up on the dinner table. He hatches a plan with Charlotte, a spider that lives in his pen, to ensure that this will never happen.
Based on the beloved children's novel by E.B. White, a young girl named Fern rescues a runty piglet, raises it as her own and names him Wilbur. However, after Wilbur grows into a pig, she is compelled to sell him to her Uncle Homer Zuckerman down the street. At Zuckerman's barn, Wilbur meets a host of animals and later learns from them that come winter, he will be slaughtered for food. Fearing for his life, Charlotte, a gentle and wise spider whom befriended the lonely Wilbur, vows to save his life. Written by
The song played by the marching band in the county fair is "The Liberty Bell" by John Phillips Sousa. While not the most famous of Sousa's marches, it was also used as the theme music of "Monty Python's Flying Circus." Former Python John Cleese voices Samuel the sheep. See more »
When Charlotte has caught and wound up the fly in her web, she leaves it and drops down to talk to Wilbur. When she goes back up to her web, the fly is missing. See more »
Charlotte's Web has always been one of my favourite children's books. When I was ten, I used to imagine having a pig as my pet and tear at the disconsolate ending.
One of the classic stories of loyalty, trust, and sacrifice comes to life in this live-action adaptation. Dakota Fanning plays Fern who keeps an unlikely pet of Wilber the pig. As winter comes, the family decides that Wilbur would make delicious smoked ham on their dining table. It was the 'ugly' and small spider with a big heart, Charlotte who saves his life with her web and words.
More than a decade ago, the world was thrilled by Babe, the courageous sheep chaser. During that time, the CGI was considered ground-breaking, thus Wilbur may not be as celebrated as Babe. (I remembered I swore off pork for a week after Babe.) Although the movie boosts a heavyweight cast of Oprah Winfrey, Kathy Bates and Cedric the Entertainer, it was Academy Award Winner Julia Roberts who breathes in life into Charlotte with maturity and genuineness.
Pardon me, but I never found Dakota Fanning cute or sweet in any way. (She was really quite irritating in War of the Worlds.) Perhaps she is too mature and smart for her age, and thus somebody younger and more innocent may be suitable for the role of Fern.
Children of all ages should be thrilled by talking animals and a charming storyline by E.B. White. This is a moving story to teach them about life and death, trust and friendship. Adults may be a little impatient at the bland storytelling, and most would have already known the ending.
The final scene will still tug heart strings and do bring your Kleenex. Do not be too skeptical, and you will enjoy this magical and childlike fantasy.
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