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Stuart Little

Filthy says:
"It's Pretty

There's no question that Stuart Little is a cute little rodent. He's so cute you just want to scoop him up and hide him away before Richard Gere shoves the little guy up his ass. It's just too bad that the rest of this movie isn't any more than cute. It's the kind of shit that nobody gets angry about, but that all those dumbfucks who collect "Precious Moments" shit will want collectibles of. In other words, it's the hollow, synthetic cuteness that only morons buy into. This isn't to say it won't make a ton because we all know there are plenty of morons out there.

Stuart, voiced by Michael J. Fox, is a mouse. He is adopted by the Littles (Geena Davis and Hugh Laurie), much to the disappointment of their cat Snowbell (Nathan Lane) and son, a butt-ugly Jonathan Lipnicki. Stuart has a hard time fitting in, but he finally does bond with Lipnicki because he helps him win some sort of rich-kid model sailboat race. The problem, though, is with the cat, who can't stand having a mouse as a master and wants Stuart rubbed out.

Snowbell turns to a mobster cat named Smokey, who has Stuart stolen by two other mice who owe him a favor. Soon, the family learns of the scheme and Smokey tries to kill Stuart. Stuart is chased all over Central Park by lots of cats. This is when Snowbell conveniently gets a conscience. Snowbell fights the other cats, rescues Stuart and delivers him home to the Littles.

What makes this movie almost tolerable is that it doesn't spend its entire story with everyone's eyes going "Boooiiiing!" when they see a talking mouse. Usually, Hollywood gets so excited about talking animals that they think that we'll all just shit our pants when we see it. In "Stuart Little," it's just accepted that he's a mouse and very little the comedy revolves around wacky double-takes.

The animation of Stuart is pretty fucking fantastic. I sat there the whole time trying to see his flaws, and there are a few. But overall, it's the best damn representation of a mouse I've ever seen. He looks like an honest-to-God emotive and talking rodent. Even his little eyes take shape when he cries or gets happy. It's just too fucking bad he's the only interesting character in the movie.

In fact, the rest of the characters are as boring as dogshit you promised to pick up but never got around to. For some unknown reason, Director Rob Minkoff has specifically chosen to make every human devoid of any personality. It's all supposed to be this witty deadpan, I think, but the gag falls flat on its ass and we're left watching a cast of "Stepford Wives." To a man, the cast gives their lines no inflection, and their faces give off nothing more than a predictably small range of emotion. They just blend into the wallpaper.

The only actor who stands out is Lipnicki, and that's only because he sucks donkey dick. He's whiny and precocious in every scene. His scenes with the mouse are obviously of a kid talking to nothing, with a mouse put in later. Plus, he's an ugly little prick, like Froggy on "Little Rascals" but without the dirty T-shirt or charm. The movie tries to cast him in this cute-kid light, and I think we're supposed to be wowed by him. Sorry, this kid's got about two movies left in him, then ten years of obscurity before he reappears as a drug addict who robs a liquor store.

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The cats, who have much larger parts than necessary, must be there purely for the joy of all those fucking weirdos who buy kitty calendars and crack up whenever they see that "Hang in there" poster. There ain't nobody else but a fucking cat-lover who will think it's cute when they start acting like beat-down cliches. They're supposed to be sassy, but they're no more sassy than Urkel on "FamilyMatters." Here's a hint for Hollywood: a character that has been done to death is still a cliche, even if it's in the form of a cat. For example, the mobster who says someone is going to "sleep with the fishes," is already crustier than a week-old condom. And fart jokes are the result of lazy filmmaking or writers who don't know how to write original jokes, even when it's a cat who passes gas.

The plot is thin. How thin? Well, consider that Lipnicki wants out of the sailboat race but his parents won't let him. Then Stuart breaks his boats controller. Instead of being happy, the ugly little moppet is sad. Consider that we are supposed to root against one kid only because he wears a blazer and a sneer. Hell, when I'm in a bad mood I wear a blazer and sneer. Consider that Stuart and Lipnicki become friends for no apparent reason or that I never did understand why Snowbell decided to feel sorry for Stuart. And, consider that the parents adopt a rodent who won't live more than a couple of years, thereby crushing their own hearts and making their young son learn about death far too early in life. Finally, just consider that the characters go through the motions, but unless we automatically root for talking animals, there's no reason for us to give a flying fuck.

When you compare this flick to "Toy Story 2" you see all more clearly what's wrong with it. Both are digital animation tour de forces, but one goes further to treat kids intelligently and tell its story nearly free of cliches. The other doesn't bother diving any deeper than the surface, because its makers think we're not smart enough to know better. Maybe we aren't.

However, even if you don't like sappy kids' movies like this, there still might be a reason for you to see it. That is if you enjoy non-stop, loud and annoying soundtracks. The overly-loud, treacly soundtrack is wall-to-wall. I think it's supposed to buoy the bland on-screen action, but most of the time, I swear to God, it had nothing to do with the movie.

Two fingers for "Stuart Little." I'll give it five fingers for any dipshits who actually like going to Hallmark Greeting Cards stores. For the rest of us, though, go see "Toy Story 2" again.

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