22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Bugs screaming for attention
This is a fable about our need to believe in ourselves.
The story is probably one of the best features in the exquisite animated film, A Bug's Life. The narrative about the life of a working ant called Flick and his attempt to save his colony from the eternal domination of the grasshoppers -through recruiting a group of insects that turn out to be circus...
Published on August 3, 2005 by milss
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Bug's Life plot is ideal for children
Better than Hutchback but not as exciting as Mulan A Bug's Life competed with its cousin film, Antz. With happy bright colors the bugs in this film deal with issues that are easier to grasp for children then the more complex Antz which is more suited for adults. The central theme is that a group of misfit circus performers are placed in a situation where they are...
Published on February 14, 1999
Most Helpful First | Newest First
22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Bugs screaming for attention,
This review is from: A Bug's Life (Two-Disc Collector's Edition) (DVD)
This is a fable about our need to believe in ourselves.
The story is probably one of the best features in the exquisite animated film, A Bug's Life. The narrative about the life of a working ant called Flick and his attempt to save his colony from the eternal domination of the grasshoppers -through recruiting a group of insects that turn out to be circus actors- is completely charming, innovative and unique. The plot is a pleasant surprise for the audience: just when one thinks everything is revealed, a new twist comes out to keep us guessing again what will happen.
The movie allows itself to have a series of incredible characters that develop while the story takes its place. Flick goes from naive and optimistic to self-confident and serious. The circus members are one of the most eclectic groups of lovable losers ever to illuminate the screen. They add color to the plot and the rest of the cast, with their adventures, mischief, eccentricities and craziness. Their growth as a group, who finally find their audience, must be highlighted too. Little Princess Dot is charming in her role as a little ant with low self esteem until becomes a leader and finally princess.
The bugs are, in fact, very graceful and funny, but it's through their extravagant personalities and their sharp dialogs that finally conquer our sympathy.
In addition, there's a solid work of animation. The visual splendor is spectacular. This is an engaging film that seems to use the most vibrant colors. The detailed work is admirable in every corner, every gesture. Ambience and characters are not limited to coexist, but to work together, consolidating the story. This is one of the best animated features of the past decade. A solid accomplishment from Pixar, who doesn't seem to let us down with their creativity, their craftsmanship and their pure genius!
103 of 126 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best DVD I've ever owned,
This is probably not going to surprise anyone-- This is simply an excellent DVD, in every scale. The first disc contains the movie itself, which is transferred from its original, digital source. The picture quality is unbelievable. Not one spot comes up during the movie, not one scratch appears-- because this wasn't transferred from film. This is the way A Bug's Life should be watched. The colors are amazing, bright and contrast eachother perfectly. The sound is also unbelievable-- this movie challanged my 1.5 surround system perfectly. Unlike some other movies I've seen, where the two rear speakers are only used about twice in the movie, A Bug's Life uses them almost constantly-- You can hear the crickets and cicadas all around you in many of the scenes, Hopper's gang are flying at you from behind; Even with a simple scene like the "Royal Huddle" the ant's footsteps are coming from around you. The first disc contains a Cinemascope widescreen version and a pan-and-scan version. I'll have to say that if you don't have a widescreen TV (I don't), you probably should forget about the widescreen version here as it is aspecially small. Besides, the PSP version was edited digitally in a very special way, even described on this DVD-- you hardly miss anything in the PSP version because of that special editing. If anything, you actually get to see more detail. Also on the first disc are two special audio choices, Music Only (cool) and SFX only (VERY cool), and a director's commentary (quite cool, although not the best I've heard. John Lasseter, Andrew Stanton and Lee Unkrich seem to talk too much about the story, which sometimes makes it sound as if they're just describing what you already see on screen.)
(I'm not going to give review to the movie itself here-- In short, it is definitly a 5 star movie!)
The second disk is where the real fun begins. I've never seen so many extras, with so many choices to choose from. It's almost confusing-- You not only get to see how they made the movie, you get to literally see how they developed EACH AND EVERY character in this film. It's astonishing. You can also hear how they edited the sound, see how they made the PSP version so good, see how they made the outtakes at the end (and also see the outtakes by themselves, clean, full screen and with no credits to interrupt), see an interview with the characters themselves (which is simply hilarious), and... See Geri's Game in all its glory. And there's even more.
Basically, if you don't have this DVD, you WILL buy it. Otherwise, what's the point of having a DVD?
35 of 41 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful!,
A BUG'S LIFE is truly a movie that the entire family can enjoy. It is adorable, funny, and it has a message that everybody can relate to.
The DVD is amazing, amazing, amazing! The transfer (the first ever completely digital transfer), is simply unbelievable. It is like you can reach into the screen and touch the characters. The cinemascope animation is truly stunning, and the transfer expresses it beautifully. The sound is wonderful. You feel like you're in the bugs' world.
This DVD has the most amazing set of extras I have ever seen. It takes you through the entire process of making A BUG'S LIFE...I've gone through "preproduction" and the first half of "production" and it took me an hour and a half...I still have three sections left! What is more amazing is that every extra is interesting! Truly an outstanding, sure to be groundbreaking disc. Disney, why can't all of your DVDs be like this!
A MUST HAVE!
16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining for kids and adults!,
A Bug's Life is entertaining for kids and adults alike. This movie is a non-stop action fest that has been masterfully captured on DVD.
The picture quality if superb, if not the best I've seen, for an animated DVD due to the direct digital to DVD transfer. In full screen mode, you will be amazed how clean and delineated the picture is; the detail is incredible!
My big surprise was how amazing the sound is on this disc. You can use this to show off your Dolby Digital sound system to friends just as well as any action film. The surround effects are crisp and the bass is well defined.
My only complaint would probably be that the action and sound is so non-stop, that it can tire out adults, albeit mesmerizing children the whole time.
The extras are plenitiful and well done. The inclusion of the end-title outtakes is the highlight of a wonderful special edition disc you're sure to enjoy.
15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Eye-popping imagery and gut-busting laughs,
When I first purchased my DVD player this June, I made a b-line for the rental store for Bugs Life, hoping to relive some of the magic I remembered from seeing the film at the cinema house. What I discovered, though, was that the images were so clean, vibrant, colorful and striking, that I was too busy looking 'at' the film that I had a difficult time 'watching' the film. Pixar did a great job with assembling a touching and imaginative film here, but what remains for me is that the DVD stands as the benchmark for all that the DVD format delivers.
33 of 41 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Super Genius Edition is the one to own,
This is the definitive DVD edition of A Bugs Life. The film makers call it "The Super Genius Edition" and I have to agree. They included everything in this two disc edition. Not only do we get both sets of outtakes, but we get Geri's Game (old man playing chess), the trailers (including one for international release), deleted scenes, storyboards, pictures, making of segments and more. It can easily take you 3 hours to go through all the extras on this disc. If you have ever wanted to know how this movie was made, this disc will tell you!
18 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What DVD should be,
Sure, this special edition is somewhat expensive, but it is worth every penny, and then some. Not only do you get a terrific presentation of a terrific film(with three alternate audio tracks, no less), but you also get a second disc filled with so many supplements, that it's difficult to think of what more you could want. Even though this disc is distributed by Disney, the DVD, like the film itself, is all Pixar. To go along with all the supplemental material, John Lasseter, co-director Andrew Stanton, and others appear in several introductory segments to explain the background and significance of what you're about to see. They're all obviously having a blast doing this, and add immesurably to the presentation of the content. Go ahead and look for short comings on this disc, but you won't find any. As for the film itself, it's obvious that Pixar has reached near-perfection in creating crowd-pleasing entertainment. With this and the "Toy Story" films they have a perfect record, and one can only hope that they keep it up. To those that say "Antz" is superior, I say that it takes more than a few mild expletives and an obvious "I'm going to do what I want to do" message to make a better film. Clearly Dreamworks wanted their film out first, which is obvious in the inferior visual look and the not-always-appropriate voice-casting of their product. The only complaint with "A Bug's Life" that I have is that the film didn't have some kind of dedication message to Roddy McDowall, who voiced Mr. Soil. I know that his part was small, but I was hoping that the audience would be reminded of the loss of a great actor. That being said, this film is one of the most enjoyable that you're likely to find, and should be owned in its collector's edition glory.
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great for children and adults alike,
By A Customer
This review is from: A Bug's Life [VHS] (VHS Tape)
This is my two-year-old's favorite! Thankfully, it is so clever that even I find it fun to watch for the zillionth time ("Mom, watch Bug Story again!"). It's great for the younger kids because it's not too scary and there's plenty of action. Believe it or not, Hopper is her favorite character. The music and animation are wonderful.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars BUY THIS DVD NOW!!!,
This review is from: A Bug's Life (DVD)
This disc contains some serious eye candy.The characters are so realistic, you actually forget that they are computer generated! This movie also tells a great story that adults can enjoy, too. (Note: I loved it and I don't even have kids!) The DVD contains both widesreen and full screen versions of the movie. The full screen version was re-rendered for DVD. Instead of just chopping the sides off of the picture, Pixar moved all the important elements onto the 4:3 screen. I think the 4:3 version actually looks better on TV. They also have great special features, including "bloopers" and an ingenious, entertaiing film short about an old man playing chess. Buy this now!!!
18 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent special edition!,
In Short: So you're wondering, is this 2 DVD set worth $49.99? Read on...
Original Film Review, Written On The Film's Opening Weekend:
The second of the Fall's animated insect projects wasn't nearly as appealing to me as the first. "A Bug's Life" boasts outstanding animation, but a lackluster and predictable plot. Possibly I just felt that way as an adult and maybe it's just my cynical nature, but I doubt I wouldn't have found this film just as predictable when I was younger.
That said, all that's left is to sit back and marvel at the animation put together by the same group that put together "Toy Story" a couple of years ago, Pixar. There's definitely a sense of wonder, terror and awe in the animation in scenes like when a bird comes into the ant colony for an attack, or when one of the ants rides a dandelion spore across a great divide. There's one major difference here in the animation from "Antz", it's that the animation here is rounded and safe, much like the plot and story; in "Antz", structures had interesting shapes and edges; you never knew what to expect next from the film.
This film has great moments, like when the ants can't figure out how to get around a leaf that has fallen in front of them(although I didn't quite get that, since I would think the ants could see over the leaf, but I guess I was putting too much thought into it.) As many great visual moments as the film has, I just couldn't help feel that it's trapped by the Disney formula of one unlikely hero rising above "it all" to save the day. That's definitely nothing new to filmmaking, but there's a certain Disney plot line that makes everything that's about to happen fairly obvious to an adult before they set foot in the theater.
The story is set around Flik, a young inventor ant who is voiced by Dave Foley(TV's "Newsradio"). That's where the film loses bite; "Antz" had an edgy, funny lead in Z(Woody Allen), Foley doesn't bring any of the wit and cynicism that his television character holds. Julia Louis Dreyfuss, who voices Princess Atta, the ant, isn't nearly as funny or sassy as Sharon Stone's ant princess in "Antz". The one character who does turn out quite well is Hopper, the king of the Tyrant grasshoppers, who is voiced by Kevin Spacey, who provides a perfect dose of menace in his voice to make the character interesting.
The film starts out with the ant colony collecting food for the grasshoppers, like usual. In an unfortunate mistake, Flik spills all the food. The grasshoppers, led by Hopper, demand that the ants provide twice the food by the end of Summer; not content to walk away, Flik sets out to find bigger insects in the insect city to help the colony fight back against the grasshopper menace; who he finds are, unknown to him, a band of circus insects, who, in turn, don't know that they're being hired to fight in a war against the grasshoppers.
Again, the animation is wonderful and, to be honest, although it's more safe feeling than "Antz", "A Bug's Life" does do a better job at providing the scope of this miniature world, from the leaves and grass to the stones and ant tunnels. The only thing I didn't quite care for was the way the ants are animated here; they looked more real to me in "Antz", here they look meant to sell a thousand Disney toys. I did like the fact that the film is in the wide 2.35:1 ratio, making the wide spaces of the grassy colony and the insect city more fascinating to watch.
In conclusion, "A Bugs Life" will provide families with a good time for a few hours and actually, maybe I just didn't quite care for this film because I'm simply not its intended audience. The legions of kids seemed to like the film and, in reality, the majority of kids will likely enjoy this film; adults may find it just okay. I'm not sure if either will find it as enjoyable or as funny as Pixar's previous film, "Toy Story", though.
VIDEO: Goregous 2.35:1 anamorphic transfer that is a direct-digital transfer and I really can't think of a disc that has more impressive image quality. As good as "Prince Of Egypt"is, this anamorphic transfer turns out to be just a touch better. Images are absolutely razor sharp throughout the presentation, and detail is absolutely outstanding. There is also a depth and dimension to this image that is remarkable. Don't get me started on the colors; you have to see them to believe how stunning they look. Colors are absolutely vibrant and even breathtaking during this movie. They also look a little bit stronger than one the image quality that was included with the previous, movie-only edition.
There are absolutely no flaws to speak of during this presentation. No shimmer, nothing in the way of artifacts like that at all. If you're looking for a disc that shows off the capabilities of DVD in terms of picture quality, there really isn't anything more perfect than this.
SOUND:Fascinating detail in the sounds of the ants creeping up the stalks of grass in the begining of the film. The sound is not only agressive and full of wonderful effects, but it has a playfulness about it that's incredibly fun to listen to. It's all in the details, though and there are plenty here. Like "Antz", the environment and ambient noise seems to be built with phenomenal attention to even the littlest of details. The sounds of little ants running about is rendered wonderfully and throughout all of it, there's even some nice touches of bass, especially when a bird attacks the insect colony. Dialogue is clear, clean and is integrated nicely. Randy Newman's score sounds wonderful as well. A very pleasing presentation by Disney. What's really amazing on this DVD is the additional sound tracks that you can listen to. On the full frame edition, you can listen to a seperate track that is an isolated effects track, where there is no dialogue or music, but you hear every single sound effect and where it's placed in the sound field. This additional effects track is in Dolby Digital 5.1 and included on the full screen version. On the widescreen version, the extra track is a 2.0 isolated score. I wish the FX track was with the widescreen and the score was with the full-screen, but oh well. What I'll also complain about is that the audio can't be changed with the remote.
MENUS:: Phenomenal animated menus during the disc for the film itself, but even more stunning animation greets you when you first turn on the 2nd DVD, as you're lead through the ant tunnels into the Pixar screening room where you're given an introduction by the director and three other members of the "Bug's Life" crew. Some of the sub-menus are not animated, but most of the main ones are, at least slightly.
EXTRAS:. Commentary: This is a commentary track from director John Lasseter, editor Lee Unkrich and co-director Andrew Stanton. The trio mainly talk about the inspirations behind the research that the crew did for how their film was going to take a look into the world of an insect. Like the commentary from "Antz", the filmmakers start talking a little bit about the science aspects of the world of bugs, but they cut that topic off and thankfully, focus more about the technical and story aspects of the movie. I didn't find it overall as informative or entertaining as the "Antz" commentary, but there are plenty of cool details and tidbits offered up throughout. I just felt that this commentary talked more about the story than the technical details.
The three are quite funny as well, talking about making the character of Flik a big geek, then going on to mention that "we didn't have to do too much research for that." The group talks a lot about the ideas for Flik and the concepts that they had not only for the character, but how he would interact with the rest of the characters in the story. In terms of story and plot talk, the more interesting details are about what we didn't see , as the animators talk about coming up with story details that didn't make it into the final picture or talking about the process of coming up with the story, as they talk quite a bit about how scenes were thought out and built. If the commentators are going to talk about the story more than the details, I'd rather hear about the meetings behind-the-scenes where the concepts were thought out or what didn't make it into the final plot rather than talking about just what is going on on-screen or what the characters are thinking. It's not a bad commentary by any means, but I lost interest through some parts of the discussion.
DVD TWO: THE EXTRA FEATURES The additional features on this disc are broken down into sections of the animation process. I'm going to go into detail about what each section contains. This second DVD has a running time of 107 minutes.
PRE-PRODUCTION: "Fleabie" Reel: There is an introduction to this additional feature, where the crew talks about how they came up with this film that showed a strage little character named Fleabie taking the tour of the animation stu
Most Helpful First | Newest First
A Bug's Life (Two-Disc Collector's Edition) by Andrew Stanton (DVD - 2003)