A Bug’s Life

Movie Information

Genre: Children's Animated
Director: John Lasseter
Starring: Dave Foley, Kevin Spacey, Julia Louis-dreyfus
Rated: G

When it comes to A Bug’s Life (or any creature’s life), Michelle Raiford is a woman who knows her stuff. One of the “directors of chaos management” at All Pets Animal Hospital, I’ve seen Michelle comfort a thermodynamically-challenged Iguana, as well as cheerfully clean up after the alpha canines when they’ve lifted their legs and stated their case inside the waiting room (alas, included in this group are my own well-mannered beasts). A special thanks to Dr. Eddie Heath for allowing us to borrow Michelle for an afternoon of entomological entertainment … I’m sure Michelle was delighted to only have to write about them, not clean up after them. So, here’s Bella Michella on ‘da bugs:

Put away the Raid, call off the Terminix guy, and head out to the theater to experience the wonderful world of A Bug’s Life. In conjunction with Walt Disney Pictures, the creative geniuses at Pixar have topped Toy Story, their glorious, earlier cinematic achievement. In a twist on the Aesop fable, “The Ant and the Grasshopper,” A Bug’s Life is a visually enchanting tale of the miniscule inhabitants of Ant Island. It seems that life is no picnic for the ants in the colony, who toil most of the summer gathering food to appease a tormenting gang of grasshoppers, led by the mafioso-like Hopper (Spacey). When the free-thinking and hapless Flik (Foley) accidentally overturns the colony’s entire food offering, he generously agrees to venture out to find someone to save his pals from Hopper’s revenge. Believing he has happened upon a gang of warriors, Flik enlists the aid of an eclectic insect troupe of circus performers — including Heimlich (Joe Ranft), a food-obsessed caterpillar who longs to be a butterfly, and who also provides the movie’s best laughs. With his new friends in tow, Flik returns to Ant Island and devises a plan to end Hopper’s tyranny. But when the plan is put to the test, things go awry — prompting Flik and his gal-pal, the reluctant Queen-in-training, Princess Atta (Louis-Dreyfus), to discover their own courage and dignity. Kids will root for these lovable characters and delight in the fast-paced adventure, and everyone will enjoy gazing skyward at blades of grass towering like Redwoods, and raindrops exploding like bombs. The mixture of talent and technology in A Bug’s Life creates a magical, lovable movie that will cause you to think twice before squashing another bug. Closing words of advice: Stick around while the credits roll for some behind-the-scenes bugfoolery. (G)

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