No bag today, plus how grad school helps me to rate kid’s movies

Yes. Friday is Family Date Night, during which we pay Special Attention to one another. We go out for dinner and then watch a movie. We got home late from pizza at Mississippi Pizza tonight, where Ramona danced like a dervish and put a dollar (her idea) into the tip jar of the band. The band, a nice pair of young fellows playing, respectively, a mandolin and a guitar, thanked “the dancer” for upping the entertainment value of their set.

Then we came home at 8:30, already bedtime, but we’d promised the movie–even showed her the trailer yesterday to build excitement. Babe: Pig in the City. It’s a great movie, and we settled in with blueberries as a post supper snack.

I will do two bags tomorrow to make up, and will document. Here’s why it was good to do the movie.

I am at war with Disney, which, with its slender heroines and evil female co-leads is a primer in low self-esteem for girls who are not textbook pretty. Rosie is hearing all about princesses at school, and already attuned to what is princess and what is not princess. I am not a believer in keeping the kid completely media free, as many people I know had that experience as children and responded by gorging on media the second they were out of sight of their parents.

Instead, I want to give Ro good media. Babe: Pig in the City is good media. The basic storyline is that Babe the pig’s owner is about to lose the farm, so Babe and the portly Mrs. Farmer go into the great wide world to earn some dough. Mrs. Farmer loses the pig, who ends up at a fleabag motel. In the course of the story, he invites many stray animals to live there, they get busted by the authorities and all the animals are taken to an animal reserach lab, and Babe the pig busts them out, bringing the urban animals back to the farm, which is saved by the hotel’s owner renting the hotel out to a dance club.

Weird, right? Well, here is where my education in literary analysis spikes. I think about the WORK this movie does. We see the fat housewife as a heroine, helping Babe to free himself and others from the lab. We see Babe, a nonrelated species, order the cats and dogs to be nice to one another. We see the urban/rural divide smashed. And throughout the film, there is no deus ex machina in the form of  man rescuing a woman.

So, I did that tonight instead. More bags tomorrow. Promise.

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Published in: on January 15, 2011 at 7:47 am  Comments (4)  

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4 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Isn’t there a prequel called “Babe the Gallant Pig”? If so, how does it stack up? And if not, where the fuck did my subconscious dig up that one?

  2. Yes, there was. The movie here discussed is awesome and way brainier. More there for the adults watching, but still great for kids.

  3. I went and saw Babe: Pig in the City in theatres with my mother. We arrived at a movie house that now no longer exists AND there was no one in the theatre except us. It’s definitely a memory I’ll keep with me for the rest of my brain’s active life.

    • Lovely!Remind me to tell you about the time Dennis Nyback opened Clinton Street Theater just for me and my parents.


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