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Flushed Away
Flushed poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by
  • David Bowers
  • Sam Fell
Produced by
  • Cecil Kramer
  • David Sproxton
  • Peter Lord
Screenplay by
  • Dick Clement
  • Ian La Frenais
  • Chris Lloyd
  • Joe Keenan
  • Will Davies
Story by
  • Sam Fell
  • Peter Lord
  • Dick Clement
  • Ian La Frenais
Starring
Music by Harry Gregson-Williams
Editing by
  • Eric Dapkewicz
  • John Venzon
Studio
Distributed by
Release date(s) 3 November 2006 (2006-11-03) (United States)
1 December 2006 (2006-12-01) (United Kingdom)
Running time 85 minutes
Country
  • United Kingdom
  • United States
Language English
Budget $149 million
Money made $178 million

Flushed Away is a 2006 computer-animated adventure comedy film directed by David Bowers and Sam Fell, produced by Cecil Kramer, David Sproxton, and Peter Lord, and written by Dick Clement, Ian La Frenais, Chris Lloyd, Joe Keenan and Will Davies. It was the third and final DreamWorks Animation film co-produced with Aardman Animations following Chicken Run (2000) and Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit (2005), and was the first Aardman project completely made in computer-animation as opposed to their usual stop motion standard. The film stars the voices of Hugh Jackman, Kate Winslet, Andy Serkis, Bill Nighy, Ian McKellen, Shane Richie and Jean Reno. In Flushed Away, a pet rat named Roddy St. James is flushed down the toilet by a sewer rat, and befriends a scavenger named Rita in order to return home while evading a power-hungry toad and his rat henchmen.

The film was released in the United States by Paramount Pictures on 3 November 2006, and in the United Kingdom on 1 December 2006. Despite receiving positive reviews, Flushed Away underperformed at the box office, prompting DreamWorks to end their partnership with Aardman. The film received nominations for the BAFTA Award and Critics' Choice Award for Best Animated Feature. It also got 8 nominations at the 34th Annie Awards, winning a leading 5, including Writing in a Feature Production, and Voice Acting in a Feature Production.

Plot

Roddy St. James is an upper class pet rat who makes his home in a posh Kensington flat. While his owners are away on holiday, a common sewer rat named Sid comes spewing out of the sink and decides to stay, especially as England are playing against Germany in the World Cup Final. Roddy schemes to get rid of Sid by luring him into the toilet, but the latter is not fooled. Instead, Sid throws Roddy in and flushes him away into the sewer.

Roddy finds himself in Ratropolis, a city made out of various bits of junk that resembles London, and meets Rita Malone, an enterprising scavenger rat who works the drains in her faithful boat, the Jammy Dodger. Rita is irritated by Roddy initially, but ends up taking him along. Her archenemy the Toad sends his rat henchmen, Spike and Whitey, after her for stealing back her father's prized ruby. The Toad loathes all rodents, and plans to have Roddy and Rita frozen with liquid nitrogen. The pair escape, and Rita takes a unique electrical cable that is required to control the sewer's floodgates.

Roddy discovers that the ruby is a fake and breaks it in front of Rita. Outraged, Rita tries to attack Roddy, but eventually calms down and explains that she is only angry because her father (quite literally) broke every bone in his body trying to obtain it just for her only for her to find out about its worthlessness. Roddy offers Rita a real ruby if she takes him back to Kensington, to which she agrees, and the pair first stop to visit her family before setting off. During Roddy's stay, he overhears a conversation that causes him to think that Rita is selling him to the Toad, so he reneges on the deal and steals the Jammy Dodger. When Rita catches up to him, she is able to clear up the misunderstanding. The pair evade a pursuit from Spike, Whitey, and their accomplices, and incensed at his minions' repeated failures, the Toad sends for his French cousin, known as Le Frog. It is revealed that the Toad was Prince Charles' favorite childhood pet until he was abruptly replaced by a pet rat and subsequently flushed down a toilet, resulting in his hatred of rodents. Le Frog and his subordinates intercept Roddy and Rita to retrieve the cable, but the duo manage to escape out of the sewer and back to Roddy's home, though the Jammy Dodger is destroyed.

Roddy pays Rita the promised ruby and an emerald, then shows her around his house. She at first believes he has family in the home, but notices his cage and realizes he is a pet. Rita tries to persuade Roddy to come with her, but he is too proud to admit that he is lonely. She departs, but is soon captured by the Toad. Talking to Sid about half-time, Roddy pieces together the Toad's plan: to open the gates during halftime of the World Cup, when all the humans will most likely be using their toilets. As a result, a great wave of sewage will form and flood Ratropolis, allowing the Toad to use the depopulated city as a home for his tadpole children. Roddy entrusts Sid with his home and cushy position, and has Sid flush him back down the sewers. He frees Rita, and together they defeat the Toad and his henchmen and freeze the wave of sewage with his liquid nitrogen. Roddy later joins Rita as a first mate of the Jammy Dodger II. As they set off in the new boat, Le Frog and his hench-frogs are seen hitchhiking back to France. In a mid-credits scene, Roddy's original owner Tabitha brings a new pet cat to surprise him, much to Sid's horror, who was enjoying the luxuries in Roddy's place.

Voice cast

  • Hugh Jackman as Roderick "Roddy" St. James, a pampered but lonely pet rat living in a Kensington apartment with a wealthy English family. He is flushed down the toilet by Sid into the sewers.
  • Kate Winslet as Rita Malone, a street-wise and rather mean-spirited scavenger rat and the oldest child of a large family. She is the captain of The Jammy Dodger and Roddy's close love interest.
  • Ian McKellen as the Toad, a haughty amphibian wanting the entire population of Ratropolis to be killed off so he can make room for his hundreds of offspring. For his performance, McKellen won the Annie Award for Voice Acting in a Feature Production.
  • Jean Reno as Le Frog, the Toad's French cousin. He refers to the Toad as "my warty English cousin". He masters martial arts and is the leader of a team of hench-frogs.
  • Andy Serkis as Spike, one of the Toad's two top hench-rats. He is the quicker-witted and more aggressive of the two.
  • Bill Nighy as Whitey, another of the Toad's two top hench-rats. Whitey is an albino rat, and Spike's partner. Unlike Spike, Whitey is sympathetic and less vicious, but is also ignorant and gullible.
  • Shane Richie as Sid, an over-weight and lazy rat from the sewers. He is an acquaintance of Rita and her family, and the one who flushed Roddy down the toilet into the sewers.
  • Kathy Burke and David Suchet as Mr. and Mrs. Malone, Rita's parents
  • Miriam Margolyes as Rita's grandmother, who has a crush on Roddy mistaking him for Tom Jones.
  • Rachel Rawlinson as Tabitha, Roddy's human owner.
  • Christopher Fairbank as Thimblenose Ted, another henchman that serves the Toad's third-best enforcer after Spike and Whitey. Fairbank also voiced the cockroach living in the Malone household.

Soundtrack

On Halloween (31 October) 2006, the Flushed Away: Music from the Motion Picture soundtrack was released by Astralwerks.

No. Title Artist Length
1. "Be Seeing You My Friend"     3:49
2. "Dancing with Myself"   Billy Idol 4:49
3. "Are You Gonna Be My Girl"   Jet 3:34
4. "She's a Lady"   Tom Jones 2:54
5. "Ice Cold Rita"   Hugh Jackman & The Slugs 0:44
6. "Bohemian Like You"   The Dandy Warhols 3:32
7. "Marcel / That's Not Rice You're Eating"   Harry Gregson-Williams & The Slugs 0:55
8. "What's New Pussycat?"   Tom Jones 2:17
9. "Yakety Sax"   Boots Randolph 2:01
10. "Mr. Lonely"   The Slugs 0:27
11. "Don't Worry, Be Happy (with The Slugs intro)"   Bobby McFerrin 4:22
12. "Proud Mary"   Tina Turner 5:25
13. "Wonderful Night"   Fatboy Slim 2:37
14. "Life in the Sewer"   Harry Gregson-Williams 4:40
15. "Beware...Beware"   The Slugs 0:35
Total length:
36:16

Video game

Coinciding with the film's release, a video game adaptation was released on the PlayStation 2, Nintendo GameCube, Game Boy Advance, and on the Nintendo DS. Although having heavily negative reviews from critics, the game received an Annie Award for best animated video game.

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