Flushed Away

Release Date: November 3, 2006

Movie of the Day for Tuesday, May 24, 2005
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60/159 David Mumpower The worst Aardman film is still not bad, just not particularly humorous. The characters are well intended, but I expect a better story from this team.

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After created an unexpected hit with the clay-animation film Chicken Run, Aardman Animations continued its affiliation with DreamWorks, the distributing studio, and planned some follow-ups. One of the natural subjects for them, of course, was Wallace and Gromit, particularly seeing as how their shorts featuring the lovably goofy man and his brilliant dog had already received all kinds of acclaim, including some Academy Awards. Going forward from there, the animation studio set out to create a modern take on the classic Tortoise vs. Hare fable. Amidst dissatisfaction with casting and script, production on the film shut down and numerous staff members were laid off.

Nonetheless, Aardman is forging ahead with a different project; this one is known as Flushed Away. From the writing team of Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais (The Commitments, The Likely Lads), the story centers around a pampered British rat who loses his posh penthouse lifestyle when it literally goes down the toilet. Or rather, he goes down the loo. Our hero is flushed down into the sewers of London. Naturally, all sorts of sewer-related hijinks take place (is it too much to hope for a cameo from The Tick's Sewer Urchin?) and he meets a number of colorful inhabitants of the area. In time, the rat even finds himself enjoying this new life and the new friends he has encountered.

On a counter-programming note, it looks as though DreamWorks and Pixar could be in direct competition again. After films with such similar subject matter as Antz/A Bug's Life and Finding Nemo/Shark Tale, Pixar will have their own rat story that will be in development even as Flushed Away is being created. Ratatouille will tell the story of a rat who lives in Paris. Once again, it will be fascinating to see how it all plays out. (Kim Hollis/BOP)

Vital statistics for Flushed Away
Main Cast Hugh Jackman, Ian McKellen, Andy Serkis
Director Sam Fell
Screenwriter Dick Clement, Ian La Frenais
Distributor DreamWorks
Trailer Click Here for Trailer
Official Site http://www.flushedaway.com/
Rating PG
Running Time 84 minutes
Screen Count 3,707
Awards Awards page for Flushed Away
Talent in red has entry in The Big Picture



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