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A Monster In Paris Film Review 2D
Directed by Bibo Bergeron
Released in 2011
It is 1910, and Paris has suffered a major flood leaving most of the city under water and the residents having to construct makeshift bridges and walkways to continue their daily lives. We are introduced to Emile, a shy film projectionist and is his friend, Raoul, a larger than life inventor and entrepreneur. On making a delivery to a scientist's workshop, Raoul unwittingly creates an explosion that has the effect of turning a flea in to a 7 foot 'monster' with a beautiful singing voice!
Having seen early 1900's Paris portrayed wonderfully in the Martin Scorsese film Hugo, we now get to enter this mesmerizing city again in animated form.
Driving around the flooded city in Raoul's oil run van, Catherine, the city landscape loses nothing of its grandeur and beauty. The players are brilliantly brought to life as the animators use all of their abilities to extenuate their characteristics in their physical forms. Raoul's John Cleese-esque legs and Bruce Forsythe chin make him look ridiculous, but when he dances it all makes sense!
After the fleas's transformation in the lab accident he escapes on to the rooftops of Paris and fleeting sightings by terrified Parisians give rise to a plan the city's pompous and self centered Mayor in waiting, Maynott. He see's the capture of the Monster as his cherry on top of Mayoral campaign.
The flea is taken in by Lucille, a beautiful young singer who is courted by Maynott. It turns out that the combination of elements that that created the lab explosion have not only transformed Franceour's (the flea) size, but have also given him an Angelic singing voice!
From here on we are taken on many chase scenes and acts of heroism from unlikely candidates, double crossing and a happily ever after.
As an adult it can be sometimes difficult to review a children's film objectively. I would quite confidently say that I can quite easily drop in to 'child' mode, a great skill to have. And this film, although it can't be measured against Toy Story or Finding Nemo, does have it charms. I loved the physicality of the characters and the fact that it has it's roots in music, is helped by the beautiful voice of Vanessa Paradis who voices Lucile.