A Bug's Life (1998)

Animation, Adventure, Comedy
Dave Foley, Kevin Spacey, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Hayden Panettiere
A misfit ant, looking for "warriors" to save his colony from greedy grasshoppers, recruits a group of bugs that turn out to be an inept circus troupe.
Blending top notch animation with rousing adventure, witty dialogue, and memorable characters, A Bug's Life is another Pixar winner.
  • Buena Vista Pictures Company:
  • G Rated:
  • IMDB link IMDB:
  • 25 Nov 1998 Released:
  • 20 Apr 1999 DVD Release:
  • N/A Box office:
  • John Lasseter (original story by), Andrew Stanton Writer:
  • John Lasseter, Andrew Stanton Director:
  • http://www.abugslife.com Website:

Trailer:

Funniest film in a long time9/10

This is a FUNNY film. It has all the usual Disney components (music, great range of characters, story, appeal), entwined with superb animation and the excellent voice talents of less well known actors as those in say "Antz" and "Price of Egypt".

The characters work really well, and have a strong appeal, and the humour is aimed at a wide level which overcomes generational barriers. The movie is also presented in superb cinemascope format, which adds to the cinema experience.

Call me crazy, but I have seen the film three times, and I intend on taking more friends to see it this weekend. Many skeptics have seen this film on my recommendation and not been disappointed. I work in a multiplex, and I can honestly say that no-one has ever walked out of this movie without a sense of satisfaction.

See it, and don't be put off because it is animated. You are sure to enjoy this movie, and make sure you stay for the end credits! The bloopers and out-takes at the end are the funniest part of the film, which is packed with laughs throughout.
A Bug's Life: Not Just Art, But Heart10/10

(originally a response to a movie reviewer who said A Bug's Life was too much, too fast--he was "dazed and exhausted" by the visuals, and seemed to ignore the story completely)

Okay, first off, I'm 26 years old, have a job, go to school, and have a fiance'. So maybe I'm nuts and just really good at hiding it...but not only did I NOT come away from A Bug's Life exhausted or dazed, it wasn't until I saw it the second time that I could even begin to truly appreciate the artistry and humour of the spectacular visuals--because the first time I went to see this movie, I got so wrapped up in the story and the characters that I FORGOT that I was supposed to be sitting there being "wowed" by each frame visually. How can you not empathize with Flik and his road-to-heck-paved-with-good-intentions life? "Heck" indeed, I found myself identifying with that little ant (not to mention some of the other bugs) in a lot more ways than one...and that, in itself, says more to me about what an incredible movie this is than a whole book on its beautiful eye candy. Of course, it's beautiful (every blade of grass, the tree, the rain...). Of course, what they can do with technology is amazing (you can read their lips! try it!). But this movie is not just a masterpiece of art and tech, not just an dazzling explosion of movement and color. No, A Bug's Life would be static if it were all that and no story. But, I'm glad to say, it's not! A Bug's Life has real heart. Yes, there's a lot going on, storyline-wise as well as visually, but that's because the story and characters actually have some depth to them! Just because it's a kids' movie doesn't mean you should have to turn off your brain at the theatre door--kids are smarter than you think! Besides that, I think that the PIXAR crew made this for themselves, even before their kids...and it shows, in the amount of heart in has. This movie is moving, touching, funny, intriguing, and generally engrossing. The character development in such an ensemble cast is amazing, there's a major amount of character growth, and not just of the main character--so rare in animation and often in movies in general. It doesn't hit you over the head with its points once it's made them--every scene, every frame has a reason in the storyline for being there, and there are no gratuitous shots. Not always stating explicitly in words exactly what is going on means subtlety, to me, folks; it means not "dumbing down" your movie and assuming the audience is stupid, which it mostly is not. All I can think is, if you can see A Bug's Life and not feel anything at all, then you must have never made a big mistake, hurt your friends, had a crush, fallen in love, been frustrated that no one would listen to you, lied to someone you care about, felt like a social misfit, gotten excited over a new idea, come up with a great idea, had what you thought was a great idea backfire, been awkward one moment and confident the next, felt the pressure of responsibility, stood up for yourself and your loved ones, stood alone against the crowd, felt like a failure, felt like a big success, felt the need to make a difference with your life in the lives of others...well, you get the point. Final words: A+ rating from me; please, if you're going to see it try to see it in the theatre (pan and scan video is NOT going to work for this movie); if you loved Toy Story you'll most likely love this (PIXAR knows how to make movies with heart); if you do love it see it multiple times or you STILL won't know what you're missing (the amount of detail and subtlety here is considerable); and whenever you're feeling really low, just pretend it's a seed, okay?
Wow.8/10

There is great detail in A Bug's Life. Everything is covered. The film looks great and the animation is sometimes jaw-dropping. The film isn't too terribly orignal, it's basically a modern take on Kurosawa's Seven Samurai, only with bugs. I enjoyed the character interaction however and the bad guys in this film actually seemed bad. It seems that Disney usually makes their bad guys carbon copy cut-outs. The grasshoppers are menacing and Hopper, the lead bad guy, was a brillant creation. Check this one out.
An amusing animated fantasy for all ages5/10

Several of Walt Disney Pictures' best animated films of recent years have been released or distributed through Pixar, an animation studio that specializes in computer generated animation and "A Bug's Life", their follow up to the hugely successful "Toy Story" ranks as one of the best and funniest Walt Disney Pictures animated films. Released during the same month as a similar computer generated animated film, "Antz", "A Bug's Life" suffers no bad comparisons because I consider it to be just as good as amusing as "Antz." The main focus of the film is Flik, a worker ant who has a very inventive mind and keen eye for detail. He means well but his attempts at helping his fellow ant colony with his ideas and inventions usually cause accidental disaster. One day, the ant colony set up a tribute display for a bad grasshopper named Hopper and his gang but Flik accidentally knocks it down. Hopper is very upset by this and he threatens to kill off the entire colony if they don't build him another provisions pile by the time he inspects the area again. Flik decides to help. He has only a few days to find some "warrior" bugs that can stand up to Hopper and his gang. He comes across a group of disgruntled bugs that had just been fired from their gigs at a flea circus. Flik decides to bring them back to the colony and recruit them as warrior bugs. An inventive idea for a children's film with much of the same humor and ideas that helped to make "Toy Story" an animated classic.
This movie is good eatin'!10/10

"A Bug's Life" is like a favorite candy bar -- it's chock-full of great little bits that add up to something really tasty.

The story couldn't have been better; it's clever, has "heart" (emotion), and every character has a nice "arc" (a growth or change). By comparison, the only characters in "Toy Story" to have an "arc" are Buzz, who learns to love being a toy, and Woody, who overcomes his resentment of Buzz. There are tons of laughs and cute moments in "A Bug's Life". All of the actors turn in great voice work, and the animation, both the motion and detail, is superb.

This serious movie buff doesn't throw around "10"s lightly, but this movie certainly deserves the "10" I gave it.