(out of 5)
A recently widowed mouse is in desperate need of medicine for her son who is at home suffering from pneumonia. His illness couldn’t come at a worse time: the mice in the area are all planning a big move to a safer part of their farm’s acreage, forcing concerned Mrs. Brisby to go and find the mystical rats who run the place and seek their help for her ailing boy. When she arrives at the rats’ stronghold, she discovers that her late husband was a revered member of their community after having been instrumental in helping his fellow rodents escape the lab they were held prison in as victims of experiments years earlier. The work done on these rats has left them with increased powers of technology, which in turn allows them to help our sympathetic heroine in her plight to save her family and move her community to a safer place. This terrific animated film was produced by defected Disney animators who started their own studio out of dissatisfaction with the quality of work that Mouse House was producing (Disney thought this tale too dark and passed on the project). It’s a deeply emotional, almost spiritual journey of the heart that will affect all audiences who watch it, no matter what their age. The animation still looks beautiful, and the excellent writing hasn’t weakened with time either.
Aurora, Don Bluth Productions, Mrs. Brisby Ltd.
Directed by Don Bluth
Produced by Don Bluth, Gary Goldman, John Pomeroy
Music by Jerry Goldsmith
Film Editing by Jeffrey C. Patch