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GreenCine Movie Talk
In The Theaters
I just saw it and boy does it...
318

Flushed Away
Topic by: IronS
Posted: November 27, 2006 - 9:46 PM PST
Last Reply: December 11, 2006 - 12:00 PM PST

author topic: Flushed Away
IronS
post #1  on November 27, 2006 - 9:46 PM PST  
> On May 26, 2006 - 4:24 PM PDT hamano wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> There were a lot of previews for similar CG animated movies. The most surprising one was for something called Flushed Away... awfully unclever title, I thought, is it supposed to evoke Lina Wertmuller's Swept Away? But the funny thing is it's an Aardman film, but not claymation. It's 3D CG animation with characters that look like Aardman Claymation. The characters all have that toothy overbite mouth modeled on Nick Park's dad (Nick must take after his pa).
> ---------------------------------

I liked this film so much that I saw it twice. Yes, it's cg animated claymation, so to speak. Given the size of the sets, it would have taken too much plasticine. And all those water scenes are hard for stop motion.

Hugh Jackman as Roddy St. James singing Tom Jones' "She's a Lady" is worth the price of the ticket alone (the filmmakers thank Tom Jones in the credits). Rita is the spunky sewer rat lead, a first-born who is supporting her family by herself while her father is in a full body cast. The slugs who provide comic relief and are the Greek chorus ("Don't Worry, Be Happy" when Roddy was frustrated, backup for Roddy on "Ice Cold Rita" and "Mr. Lonely" when Rita leaves) are a hoot.

Of course, there are a lot of references since this is an Aardman film. In Roddy's room, there is a stuffed Gromit and stuffed Were-Rabbit bunnies. One of the outfits Roddy considers is Wallace's. In the sewer, a flushed goldfish asks Roddy if he has seen his dad. In the underground London, a woman sells crumbs saying, "feed the flies. Tuppence a bag." Two slugs share spaghetti a la Lady and the Tramp with a different result. A book on the bookshelf is title "A Brief History of Slime."

Other cute touches include:
- the use of a British Airways duty free bag as a parachute
- Le Frog traveling down the glass pane of the window like a wacky wall-walker
- Le Frog dressed in his amphibious ninja outfit wearing flippers on his flippers
- Le Frog calling his French ninja frogs to action and they respond, "we surrender!"

The story is sweet, too. In the end, family beats luxury any day. And the slugs sing Tina Turner's "Proud Mary."
IronS
post #2  on November 27, 2006 - 9:56 PM PST  
As for the ickiness factor, there are a few burping scenes and one farting scene. The most obvious ickiness isn't mentioned except in the "Caddyshack" way (it turns out to be a candy bar).

Another cute bits:
- Newspaper headline: "Pied Piper Lures Thousands to Their Doom"
- The cockroach behind the stove was reading Kafka's "The Metamorphosis"
- A book in Roddy's room is titled, "CG Animation" (the "C" is hidden behind a toy)
IronS
post #3  on November 27, 2006 - 10:00 PM PST  
Not to mention that Ian McKellen sounded like he had way too much fun voicing Toad and Jean Reno was a total hoot as Toad's French cousin the mercenary, Le Frog.
Cinenaut
post #4  on November 29, 2006 - 8:16 AM PST  
I went to see Happy Feet instead, but now I'm suffering Aardman withdrawl.
woozy
post #5  on November 29, 2006 - 11:59 AM PST  
> On November 29, 2006 - 8:16 AM PST Cinenaut wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> I went to see Happy Feet instead, but now I'm suffering Aardman withdrawl.
> ---------------------------------

I'm putting Flushed Away above Happy Feet. My sister saw Happy Feet and thought it was ... misfired and not what she expected (she thought the music was all wrong -- nothing pre-eighties despite parents named Memphis and Norma Jean). He boyfried (a music phreak) thought it wasn't what he expected but he liked it.

Both I'll wait for the DVD unless I find myself bestired, befriended, or bechilded in the near future. But Flushed Away is in my thoughts. IronS, if you want to see it a third time...

woozy
post #6  on November 29, 2006 - 12:00 PM PST  
> On November 29, 2006 - 8:16 AM PST Cinenaut wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> I went to see Happy Feet instead, but now I'm suffering Aardman withdrawl.
> ---------------------------------

Oh, that's a "went to see"! Not a "want to see". So, how was it?

Cinenaut
post #7  on November 29, 2006 - 4:11 PM PST  
> On November 29, 2006 - 12:00 PM PST woozy wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> Oh, that's a "went to see"! Not a "want to see". So, how was it?
> ---------------------------------

It's good, but it's not what you expect from the previews. It ends up having a very strong environmental message. The motion captured animation is amazing. It's cool seeing an almost photorealistic penguin doing Savion Glover dance steps.

The downside for me was that the song selection was a tad American Idolish and the movie was a bit top heavy with the Robin Williams. He plays two fairly major characters that were sometimes in the same scene, channeling Antonio Banderas in one role and Barry White in the other.

Ursus
post #8  on November 30, 2006 - 1:09 PM PST  
I know I what I'll be doing this weekend, besides BioChemistry... : )
Chyekk
post #9  on December 2, 2006 - 12:53 PM PST  
> On November 27, 2006 - 10:00 PM PST IronS wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> ... Jean Reno was a total hoot as Toad's French cousin the mercenary, Le Frog.
> ---------------------------------

I'm in France right now, and I went to see the French version. (I don't like dubbing in general, but it doesn't bother me in animation.) It was good, but I much preferred the last Wallace and Grommit film.

Jean Reno does "Ze Frog" in the French version, too. I found it very funny that there are posters all over advertising the movie that say "Ze Frog: La French Touch".

I also went to the Cinamateque Francaise today. It is interesting to see all the old projectors and a few interesting old costumes (Scarlet's dress from Gone with the Wind, etc.), but it is nothing compared to the other great museums in Paris.

IronS
post #10  on December 4, 2006 - 1:55 PM PST  
So, does the shadow of the cat at the end of the film remind anyone else of Garfield? Who better to be a foil to the gluttonous Sid than a bigger glutton in the shape of Garfield? Of course, I could be reading more into it than warranted. :)

At the very end of the closing credits, this disclaimer appears (along with 3 dancing slugs):
No slugs were a-salted in the making of this film.

And no slugs were (as opposed to the very last Were-rabbit bunny).
Chyekk
post #11  on December 11, 2006 - 12:00 PM PST  
> On December 4, 2006 - 1:55 PM PST IronS wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> So, does the shadow of the cat at the end of the film remind anyone else of Garfield?

Hmm, I didn't think of that, but it certainly could be true. There were plenty of other references.

There was one other thing I meant to mention about the experience of seeing this in France. The theaters tell you exactly how long the commercials before the film will last. In this case, 25 minutes ! Yep, you read that right. For most films it is about 15 minutes, but for this one, there was a glorious 25 minutes of advertisements. Only about 2 of those minutes were for film promos. The rest was just plain old advertisements for soap and yogurt and perfume....


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