A scheming raccoon fools a mismatched family of forest creatures into helping him repay a debt of food, by invading the new suburban sprawl that popped up while they were hibernating...and learns a lesson about family himself.
Barry B. Benson, a bee just graduated from college, is disillusioned at his lone career choice: making honey. On a special trip outside the hive, Barry's life is saved by Vanessa, a florist in New York City. As their relationship blossoms, he discovers humans actually eat honey, and subsequently decides to sue them.
Simon J. Smith
Boog, a domesticated 900lb. Grizzly bear finds himself stranded in the woods 3 days before Open Season. Forced to rely on Elliot, a fast-talking mule deer, the two form an unlikely friendship and must quickly rally other forest animals if they are to form a rag-tag army against the hunters.
A woman transformed into a giant after she is struck by a meteorite on her wedding day becomes part of a team of monsters sent in by the U.S. government to defeat an alien mastermind trying to take over Earth.
Roddy is a decidedly upper-crust "society mouse" who lives the life of a beloved pet in a posh Kensington flat. When a sewer rat named Sid comes spewing out of the sink and decides he's hit the jackpot, Roddy schemes to rid himself of the pest by luring him into the "whirlpool." Sid may be an ignorant slob, but he's no fool, so it is Roddy who winds up being flushed away into the bustling sewer world of Ratropolis. There Roddy meets Rita, an enterprising scavenger who works the sewers in her faithful boat, the Jammy Dodger. Roddy immediately wants out, or rather, up; Rita wants to be paid for her trouble; and, speaking of trouble, the villainous Toad - who royally despises all rodents equally, making no distinction between mice and rats--wants them iced... literally. The Toad dispatches his two hapless hench-rats, Spike and Whitey, to get the job done. When they fail, the Toad has no choice but to send to France for his cousin - that dreaded mercenary, Le Frog. Written by
Hugh Jackman is everywhere these days, from reprising his iconic Wolverine role in summer blockbuster X3, to starring twice alongside Scarlett Johansson in Woody Allen's Scoop and Christopher Nolan's The Prestige, and now, just lending his voice to a lead character in the animated film Flushed Away, co-starring his summer blockbuster star Sir Ian McKellen. Soon to come will be Darren Aronofsky's The Fountain. Whew! There seems to be no stopping this Hollywood flavour of the month!
Despite this animated movie being yet another one of many based on talking animals, Flushed Away doesn't try too hard to be funny by steamrolling pop culture into the story. It just is funny with its deft touches, be it dialogue, slapstick, or various sight gags. Although it's set primarily in the sewers, it's beautiful chaos, with loads of little details all over that you'll probably need to watch it twice over to appreciate all the effort put in to create the computerized graphical sets.
At first glance, you might think you're watching a Wallace and Gromit animated show. Yes, this is produced by the same studio, Aardman Animations, in association with Dreamworks, and it is no wonder that the animation, although computer generated, maintained a very clay like look and feel, as well as character designs bearing similar resemblance in style to W&G.
The story is simple enough, yet adequately satisfying by the time the end credits roll. As the trailer suggested, Aristocratic rat pet Roddy from Kensington (Hugh Jackman) thought he just had the whole classy apartment to himself, when an unexpected guest Sid (Shane Richie) from the sewers gatecrashes into his abode, and ejects him through the "jacuzzi". All these in less than 10 minutes. So begins a mad journey in an unknown sewer world which replicated the modern London City above it with junk, where he has to figure out friend from foe, and find his way back to where he belongs.
The themes of family and friends do not come on too strongly, instead the story preferred to let the character interactions bring forth the messages. Supporting or interfering in his quest are characters like Rita (Kate Winslet), The Toad (Ian McKellen), French Le Frog (Jean Reno), and rat minions Whitey (Bill Nighy) and Spike (Andy Serkis). It's quite commendable that in its less than 90 minutes runtime, it allowed for quite a bit of set action pieces to develop, along with almost laugh-a-minute lines of dialogue, a good mix of songs (Hugh sings!) and ooh, a diabolical plot.
But what perhaps is the show stealer, are the sewer slugs. Ever popping up and performing at the right time, I'm sure they are crowd favourites despite their less than pleasant looking exterior. I wonder if they do sell the soft toy version, as it should be quite hilarious.
If too many animated flicks left this year has left you jaded with the genre, Flushed Away just flushes away the competition. Worth checking out on the big screen!
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