FLUSHED AWAY: DVD
Uptown pet mouse Roddy (voice of Hugh Jackman) lives comfortably in a large home in Kensington, London, but when the humans go away for a weekend, he is flushed down the toilet by a cheeky lowlife rat acquaintance Sid (Shane Richie) and ends up in the underground domain of the sewers. He meets sewerwise rat Rita (Kate Winslet) and her family, and comes face to face with the villainous Toad (Ian McKellen) who hates rodents and plans to rid the sewers of them all, with help from dreaded mercenary Le Frog (Jean Reno). Facing the threat of a giant flood and Toad's nasty habit of snap-freezing his enemies, it's up to feisty Rita and bumbling Roddy to save the underworld.
Review by Louise Keller:
There's a lonely pet mouse who talks to dolls, a scheming toad, a French frog in a trenchcoat and coloured slugs with headlight eyes that sing. It may not be claymation, but Aardman's first computer animated comedy, Flushed Away, retains the essence of the witty, droll, good clean fun that Wallace and Gromit-ness made into an artform. The mouths of the characters have that Aardman look with a lasso mouth surrounding teeth that resemble the white keys of a piano. And the animal characters don't look at all like the owners of the famous voices that inject them with life. Imaginative, colourful and filled with quips and funny ideas, this is a family friendly adventure that works on different levels.
Hugh Jackman's pet rat Roddy discovers a new world, when he leaves his plush but lonely Kensington cage, after being flushed down the toilet. He is thrust into a world that is very different from the pampered one in which he has lived when he is meets Kate Winslet's sassy adventurous rat Rita. There's a wonderful sense of chaos about the environment in which they find themselves. For instance, when they pop into see Rita's family, who live in a crazy and dangerous house that constantly shifts, her mother thinks 'the peeping tom' is in fact Tom Jones. This is one of several running gags that recur through the film and even Roddy's early remark that he is an innocent bystander is misheard so he is called Millicent Bystander.
Ian McKellen's bulbous green toad makes a commanding villain as he flicks his long sticky tongue in search of flies, and Jean Reno's verry frrench frog is a real scene stealer. The Marcel Marceau frog, dressed in black and white striped attire is rather special and I especially enjoyed the incongruity of the singing slugs that slink into view intermittently bursting into vocal harmonies.
Wallace and Gromit they are not, but these curious looking rats with pointed snouts do have plenty of charm in this energetic, fresh and adventure that will make you chuckle when you least expect it.
Special features on the DVD include all things slug - slug songs, build-a-slug, slug gam, saving the slugs, slug singers, virtual slug, slut tones, slug-a-thon as well as behind the scenes features, set top games, jukebox and printables.
Published July 5, 2007
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FLUSHED AWAY: DVD (G)
VOICES: Hugh Jackman, Kate Winslet, Jean Reno, Bill Nighy, Andy Serkis, Shane Richie, David Suchet, Miriam Margolyes, Rachel Rawlinson
PRODUCER: Cecil Kramer, Peter Lord, David Sproxton
DIRECTOR: David Bowers, Sam Fell
SCRIPT: Dick Clement, Ian La Frenais, Chris Lloyd, Joe Keenan, Will Davies
CINEMATOGRAPHER: Brad Blackbourn, Frank Passingham
EDITOR: Eric Dapkewitz, John Venzon
MUSIC: Harry Gregson-Williams
PRODUCTION DESIGN: David James
RUNNING TIME: 84 minutes
AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: UIP
AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: December 21, 2006
SPECIAL FEATURES: Slug songs, meet the cast, music, learn to draw Roddy, jukebox, slugcam, set top games, slug singers, saving the slugs, printables & weblinks, slug tones, slugathon, slug printables
DVD DISTRIBUTOR: Paramount
DVD RELEASE: July 5, 2007