Babe: Pig In The City
$12 General Admission
“It’s a dog-eat-dog world, and there aren’t enough dogs to go around.”
Babe: Pig in the City is George Miller’s (of Mad Max fame) dark, surrealist follow-up to the Australian family hit. In the sequel, Babe leaves his idyllic farm for the sprawling metropolis; Miller’s urban landscape is a dystopic, overwhelming, frightening, chaotic, and sometimes cruel place for the animal proletariat.
Miller offers the children in the audience a scary fantasy: How would they get along in the big city without adults around? How would they feed themselves? What’s the pecking order? Who would tell them what to do? Grim humor coupled with outlandishly fantastic production design and cinematography lends the film a magical, dark fairy-tale aesthetic. The farm is bathed in golden hues, and the vibrant colors of the fantastical animal hotel pop; the city itself, a post-modern amalgamation of dozens of famous locales, is hyperkinetic and unpredictable.
Babe: Pig in the City is filled to the trough with strongly recognizable themes: classism, racial warfare, noir appeal, Orwellian philosophy, a sleazy family of criminal chimps, an extremely creepy clown, a poodle ex-prostitute, running jokes about men who look like pigs, opera, and virtuosic chase sequences.
“Here is a movie that is all made up. The world and its characters materialize out of the abyss of the imagination, and in their impossibility, they seem more real than the characters in many realistic movies…I liked Babe for all the usual reasons, but I like Babe: Pig in the City more, and not for any of the usual reasons, because here is a movie utterly bereft of usual reasons.” –Roger Ebert