a bug’s life

AN EPIC OF MINIATURE PROPORTIONS. 

In my opinion, a bug’s life and its competitor, Antz, are equally good, but this one might actually appeal more to kids. Conceived with plenty of imagination, this is a remake of The Seven Samurai with ants standing in for the villagers, grasshoppers for the parasitic bandits and a circus troupe of various insects for the samurai, who are mistakenly hired as soldiers by the ants. Kevin Spacey’s voice talents give the villain his character and the animation is topnotch; a funny, fast film but a tad too hysterical at times. The credits are accompanied by animated bloopers; a great idea that doesn’t quite come off (they are after all fake bloopers).

1998-U.S. Animated. 94 min. Color. Widescreen. Produced by Darla K. Anderson, Kevin Reher. Directed by John Lasseter. Screenplay: Andrew Stanton, Donald McEnery, Bob Shaw, John Lasseter, Joe Ranft. Music: Randy Newman. Voices of Dave Foley (Flik), Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Atta), Kevin Spacey (Hopper), Phyllis Diller, David Hyde Pierce, Denis Leary… Roddy McDowall, Madeline Kahn. Cameo: Woody!

Last word: “We had a real faith in ourselves, and we decided we wanted to make this a bigger movie. We called it ‘an epic of miniature proportions.’ We took a look at the insect world, and we found that at that level, it’s like living in a world where everything is a stained-glass window. Everything is organic in the natural world, where things in ‘Toy Story’ were pretty much geometric. By doing things organically, everything looked so beautiful, especially in the wide-screen format. I think still to this day it’s the most beautiful movie we’ve created.” (Lasseter, Oprah.com)

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