We gave it an A-
Remember when children’s films could be strange and a little discomfiting, like the best fairy tales? Babe: Pig in the City (1998, 1 hr., 37 mins., G) is one of those films, filled with the combination of cartoonish glee, imaginative weirdness, and genuine menace usually reserved for Roald Dahl novels and their adaptations. The sequel to the 1995 classic Babe, about an adorable talking pig who saves the farm, Pig in the City didn’t get the same acclaim as its predecessor despite being just as good. Now that the movie is on Blu-ray, maybe people who like their talking-animal stories with some bite will give it a second look.
George Miller (of Mad Max and, later, Happy Feet fame) creates a vivid and towering metropolis populated by a whole new menagerie of anthropomorphized creatures, as well as an equally strange cast of human characters whom Babe meets when he is accidentally abandoned by the farmer’s wife. The story is heartwarming but never cloying, and the fanciful sets and Miller’s stylized direction make it a fun watch for adults, too. It’s the rare family film that is candy-colored but not sugarcoated. A-