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Mr. Toad's Wild Ride (1996) - Plot Summary Poster

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Summaries

  • Mole's underground home is bought by the Weasels from wealthy landowner Mr. Toad and Mole is thrown out. He and Rat start to fight to get his home back from evil Weasels.


Spoilers

The synopsis below may give away important plot points.

Synopsis

  • The film starts with Mole redecorating his home, when suddenly, the ceiling caves in. Mole rushes out of his hole, only to see a group of weasels in a large steam shovel tearing up the meadow he is living in. Mole rushes to the riverbank, where he encounters Rat. Rat invites Mole to a river picnic that he is planning, but Mole explains about what has happened. As the meadow that Mole lives in is owned by Toad, the two decide to postpone the picnic and see Toad about what has happened.

    Upon meeting up with Toad, he informs the two that he sold the meadow to pay for his new form of travel- a yellow gypsy cart. Both Rat and Mole are upset at these actions, but Toad seems hardly phased at having deprived Mole of his home. Toad offers Mole the chance to live at Toad Hall, and encourages both him and Rat to accompany him in a journey in the cart. As they go down a country lane, Ray is further surprised to find that Toad sold the meadow to the Weasels. The Weasels have been attempting to get Toad Hall for some time, but even this does not phase Toad.

    Suddenly, a motor car comes out of nowhere and almost destroys the cart. The sight of this fast-moving machine soon takes hold of Toad, and he decides he must have one. However, his driving skills are just as reckless, and he ends up crashing his latest vehicle purchase in the Wild Wood, while also scattering his friends left and right.

    In the Wild Wood, mole soon encounters the Weasels, who hint that they intend to soon take over Toad Hall, and chastise Mole for his timidity. Mole soon encounters Rat, and they make their way to McBadger's, where he is hibernating. Angered at being awakened, he soon welcomes them inside, and Toad once he has found McBadger's residence.

    Toad soon informs his friends that the Weasels tried to get him to sell Toad Hall for a new motor car. Toad then explains that he refused, and did so on the condition that he could have 6 new motor cars. McBadger takes Toad aside, and lectures him on his actions. McBadger forces Toad to apologize for what he has done, but Toad refuses to do so.

    After stuffing Toad into a large picnic basket, his friends return him to Toad Hall, where the 6 new motor cars are waiting. McBadger sends them away, much to the dismay of the Weasels, who soon after come up with a new plan.

    Toad is locked in his bedroom in hopes that isolation will cure him of his 'mania' for motor cars. One day, Toad tricks Ratty (who is on guard duty) into possibly planning a winter picnic. Toad uses this opportunity to escape, and finds his way to a small restaurant. Soon after, a motor car pulls up, and once the vehicle's occupants have gone into the restaurant for lunch, Toad makes off with the car, eventually crashing it.

    Toad is soon after put on trial for his actions, but almost noone shows him any compassion, not even his Defense lawyer. McBadger attempts to provide information about Toad's 'mania' in hopes to help, but Toad makes a fool of him, silencing McBadger. The jury soon finds Toad guilty (with a weasel disguised as a rabbit in the jury box), and he is sentenced to 20 years. However, Toad belligerently gallivants around the courtroom, insulting the judge and jury men. These actions cause the judge to sentence Toad to 100 years, and he is dragged away.

    Soon afterwards, the Weasels claim Toad Hall on the condition that the 6 new motor cars were never fully paid off. Ratty and Mole then hatch a plan to break Toad out of jail, unawares that he has put this same thinking into effect, due to the jailer's daughter telling of how the papers have reported that Toad Hall is to be blown up by the Weasels.

    Disguised as a tea lady, Toad escapes, and encounters his friends on the outside. They then make their way to a railway station, where Toad coaxes the engineer of a train to allow them into the engine. However, the police are not far behind, and jump aboard before the train gets going. Toad convinces the engineer that the police have no respect for his train, and the engineer begins chucking coal at the police, before he is accidentally caught by a mail-catcher along the side of the train.

    Toad takes this opportunity to try and push the train as fasts as it can go. In the process, Mole and Rat become separated as they move to confront the police in the rail cars. In the process, the engine and coal car are detached, sending Toad careening off where he eventually crashes the train, but hops off towards Toad Hall.

    Rat and Mole soon start heading back towards the riverbank, but Mole, feeling like has has done nothing decent to help his friends, decides to return to his destroyed hole. Rat then heads off to McBadger's place, only to find that the Weasels have also begun tearing up the Wild Wood, and have stopped just outside McBadger's door. When McBadger sees what they have done, he and Rat decide to put a stop to them.

    Toad meanwhile, has been picked up by the head weasel, and taken to see a new kind of 'machine.' Toad is giddy, until he sees that it is a giant mincer. In the time that the Weasels have taken over the meadow Toad sold them, they have built a dog food factory over it, and intend to continue developing the area and eventually destroy the riverbank. Rat and McBadger are soon caught trying to sneak into Toad Hall (now overrun with weasels), and soon join Toad on their way to the mincer. Luckily, Mole has found the factory, and after having become incensed over the destruction of his home for something so foul, helps stop the machine and save his friends, proving that he can be heroic.

    The 4 friends then return to Toad Hall, where they manage to knock about most of the weasels. However, the head Weasel makes off with some explosives and a detonator, intent on blowing up Toad Hall. Toad attempts to stop him, but the rogue throws the switch, and the explosives go off. Toad is at first shocked and saddened, as he assumes his friends have perished. However, Mole switched the signs between Toad Hall and the dog food factory, and the weasel ended up blowing up their own factory.

    In the aftermath, the meadow is relinquished to Toad, and Mole's home is restored. A party is called for along the riverbank near Toad Hall, and Toad is eager to once again egotistically make himself the life of the party. However, McBadger demands Toad just have a simple ceremony, and Toad complies, albeit a bit down about the whole thing. Some of the rabbits of the nearby Wild Wood ask Toad to sing, and he complies...only singing a song that also has Mole, Rat and McBadger singing about living along the riverbank.

    As they sing, Toad sneaks back to Toad Hall, and lays eyes on his secret purchase: an airplane! He soon takes to the air, as his friends look on in shock and awe that Toad's mania for speed has now taken to the air.

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