Ratatouille – What Parent’s Think of at Kids’ Movies

November 10, 2011


Monday night Kate and I watched Ratatouille with Jude and Ellie and in spite Jude’s initial protestation in favor of a tried and true Sesame Street video, they both loved it. While Ellie loved the film for its uncanny ability to include numerous recognizable props (“Shoes!” “He jump!” “He sad” “De rainin’.”, etc.), I think was actually able to get in to the movie a bit more.

If you haven’t seen the movie Ratatouille is about how a rat named Remi, who loves to cook, learns to live out his identity, finding acceptance and earning acclaim from both his father and the colossal food critic Anton Ego.  Here, after Remi has come to terms with his identity and  poured himself in to an evening of living out that identity, is Ego’s review of the meal:

Monday as I watched this scene I was reminded of two quotes:

He who works with his hands is a laborer.
He who works with his hands and his head is a craftsman.
He who works with his hands and his head and his heart is an artist. (St. Francis of Assisi)

and,

Good teaching cannot be reduced to technique; good teaching comes from the identity and integrity of the teacher. (from Parker Palmer’s The Courage to Teach)

In Ratatouille the powerful force keeping Anton Ego employed as the unswerving critic is overcome by a creator whose hands, head and heart have all set about making a masterpiece.

As far as I can tell, the only options on the table are:

  1. Withdraw from creation and be a critic only
  2. Create and immediately retreat in to self-protecting cynicism, disinterest or dispassion.
  3. Unapologetically pouring one’s whole self in to creation and living “the new” that others might be drawn in to the places where life is to be found.
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One Response to “Ratatouille – What Parent’s Think of at Kids’ Movies”

  1. Karen Wulf Says:

    Wow-your post makes great use of that clip from the movie. That is quite a parallel! Anyone can cook/God can use anyone/there are no second string believers. Good stuff, great illustration of artistry, too. How did I miss all of this before?


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