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Brighter and more colorful than the other animated insect movie of 1998 (Antz), A Bug's Life is the sweetly told story of Flik (voiced by David Foley), an ant searching for better ways to be a bug. His colony unfortunately revolves around feeding and fearing the local grasshoppers (lead by Hopper, voiced with gleeful menace by Kevin Spacey). When Flik accidentally destroys the seasonal food supply for the grasshoppers he decides to look for help ("We need bigger bugs!"). The ants, led by Princess Atta (Julia Louis-Dreyfus), are eager to dispose of the troublesome Flik. Yet he finds help--a hearty bunch of bug warriors--and brings them back to the colony. Unfortunately they are just traveling performers afraid of conflict.
As with Toy Story, the ensemble of creatures and voices is remarkable and often inspired. Highlights include wiseacre comedian Denis Leary as an un-ladylike ladybug, Joe Ranft as the German-accented caterpillar, David Hyde Pierce as a stick bug, and Michael McShane as a pair of unintelligible pillbugs. The scene-stealer is Atta's squeaky-voiced sister, baby Dot (Hayden Panettiere), who has a big sweet spot for Flik.
More gentle and kid-friendly than Antz, A Bug Life's still has some good suspense and a wonderful demise of the villain. However, the film--a giant worldwide hit--will be remembered for its most creative touch: "outtakes" over the end credits à la many live-action comedy films. These dozen or so scenes (both "editions" of outtakes are contained here) are brilliant and deserve a special place in film history right along with 1998's other most talked-about sequence: the opening Normandy invasion in Saving Private Ryan.
The video also contains Pixar's delightful Oscar-winning short, Geri's Game. Box art varies. --Doug Thomas
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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!
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.
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!
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