Ratatouille marks a significant ideological shift in children’s movies.
This is a movie about cooking. The little rat pictured above is a great cook, but no one will let him cook because . . . well . . . he’s a rat! Rats in the restaurant kitchen is bad for business. This is the story of how he proves to the world that he’s a good cook. The moral of the story is spelled out a few times in the script:
Not everyone is a good cook, but a good cook can come from anywhere.
This is worlds apart from the usual children’s entertainment (and education) rhetoric of “You can be anything you want,” “You’re good at everything!” In other words, you’re not good at everything. In fact, you’re really bad at some things, but really good at other things. Let’s find out what you’re good at. On the other hand, you can never tell what someone else might be good at, unless you give them a chance (like giving a rat a chance to cook).
Pixar does it again!