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A Bug's Life

"Brilliant Disney Classic"

"Great Film. Truly excellent"

"Pixar animation is the best and most consistent!"

A Bug's Life by Pixar with voices by David Foley, Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Denis Leary

There was a rare magic on the big screen in 1995, when the people at Pixar came up with the first fully computer-animated film, Toy Story, and their second feature film, A Bug's Life. Brighter and more colourful 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 and brings them back to the colony. Unfortunately they are just travelling performers, afraid of conflict.

As with Toy Story, the ensemble of creatures and voices is remarkable and often inspired. Highlights include wise-cracking comedian Denis Leary as an un-ladylike ladybird, Joe Ranft as the German-accented caterpillar, David Hyde Pierce as a stick insect and Michael McShane as a pair of unintelligible woodlice. The scene-stealer is Atta's squeaky-voiced sister, baby Dot (Hayden Panettiere), who has a big soft spot for Flik.

Gentler and more child-friendly than Antz, A Bug Life's still has some good suspense and a wonderful demise in store for the villain. However, the film - a worldwide hit - will be remembered for its most creative touch: "outtakes" over the end credits la many live-action comedy movies. These are brilliant and deserve their own special place in film history.

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