All The Little Animals

Overview

British producer Jeremy Thomas made his directorial debut with this drama adapted from the novel by Walker Hamilton. Hindered by a childhood auto accident, teen Bobby (Christian Bale) is a misfit from a well-to-do family; he suffers yet another setback after the premature death of his mother. His stern stepfather, the evil De Winter (Daniel Benzali) labels Bobby "subnormal" and schemes to trick the youth into signing over the family department store. Bobby calls DeWinter "The Fat." To escape The Fat's clutches, ...
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Overview

British producer Jeremy Thomas made his directorial debut with this drama adapted from the novel by Walker Hamilton. Hindered by a childhood auto accident, teen Bobby (Christian Bale) is a misfit from a well-to-do family; he suffers yet another setback after the premature death of his mother. His stern stepfather, the evil De Winter (Daniel Benzali) labels Bobby "subnormal" and schemes to trick the youth into signing over the family department store. Bobby calls DeWinter "The Fat." To escape The Fat's clutches, Bobby takes off, hitchhiking to Cornwall. The trip ends when the teen causes an accident while trying to keep the driver from intentionally running over a fox. The driver is killed in the crash. Bobby then meets the antisocial Mr. Summers (John Hurt) who states, "People are of no value at all as far as I'm concerned." Summers allows Bobby to move into his shack, eventually revealing his past criminal life, and the two team to confront The Fat in London. Filmed in Cornwall and the Isle of Man. Shown in the Certain Regard section at the 1998 Cannes Film Festival.
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Special Features

Closed Caption; 4x3 full frame; English & Spanish subtitles
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Mike Cummings
This bizarre but highly original film teaches an important lesson: Be nice to the next one down in the food chain or Mother Nature will swallow your Rolls Royce. On the surface, the production is a be-kind-to-animals homily in which a brain-damaged runaway youth and an eccentric recluse roam England's Cornwall countryside to bury animals killed by speeding cars and lorries. But beneath the surface the film is a plea for advancing civilization to slow down long enough to consider the meaning of existence, and reflect on the humanizing power of love. The film is generally good and the acting strong. Christian Bale portrays a childlike 24-year-old named Bobby who never fully recovered from a car accident that arrested his mental development at an early age. John Hurt is his eremitic friend, Mr. Summers, a forest dweller who abandoned the unfeeling workaday world after murdering his oppressive wife and stealing a fortune from the bank that employed him. Though both characters are damaged goods, they combine to make a whole, functioning man with sense enough to realize what is really important in life. Daniel Benzali is nothing short of terrifying as the stepfather who abuses Bobby, cheats him out of his inheritance, and then tries to run him down with his black Rolls Royce. Because the script makes no attempt to explain why Benzali's character is so cruel and vengeful, he functions mainly as a symbol of evil in a corrupt world. When he invades the beautiful Cornwall back country to vent his wrath on Bobby, he trespasses in paradise, and the film lurches toward its suspenseful climax.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 8/19/2003
  • UPC: 031398845423
  • Original Release: 1998
  • Rating:

  • Source: Lions Gate
  • Region Code: 1
  • Aspect Ratio: Pre-1954 Standard (1.33.1)
  • Presentation: Pan & Scan
  • Sound: Dolby Surround
  • Language: English
  • Time: 1:52:00
  • Format: DVD

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
John Hurt Mr. Summers
Christian Bale Bobby
Daniel Benzali De Winter
James Faulkner Mr. Whiteside
Technical Credits
Jeremy Thomas Director, Producer
Chris Auty Executive Producer
Hercules Bellville Associate Producer
Celestia Fox Casting
Richard Hartley Score Composer
Michael Molloy Cinematographer
Denise O'dell Co-producer
Andrew Sanders Production Designer
Ivan Sharrock Sound/Sound Designer
Steve Simmonds Art Director
John Victor Smith Editor
Louise Stjernsward Costumes/Costume Designer
Eski Thomas Screenwriter
Jonathan Watson Asst. Director
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Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. Kingdom [6:20]
2. Ashes to Ashes [3:24]
3. Signature [5:17]
4. Threat [4:09]
5. Peter [3:37]
6. One the Road [4:55]
7. Fox [5:26]
8. Mr. Summers [6:53]
9. A New Home [5:49]
10. In the Grass [3:50]
11. The Light [3:00]
12. Badger [3:24]
13. Lost and Found [3:20]
14. Past [4:22]
15. Summers' Tale [5:24]
16. Plan [4:56]
17. Down to London [7:39]
18. Return [4:21]
19. Rest [5:19]
20. The Dig [3:16]
21. Cut [4:23]
22. Trap [6:48]
23. The Work [3:20]
24. Closing Credits [3:01]
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Menu

Side #1 --
   Play Feature
   Scene Selection
   Subtitles
      Spanish
      English for the Hearing Impaired
      Subtitles: None
   Theatrical Trailer
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 2, 2000

    The thinking-man's fairytale

    This movie isn't ''cute,'' as the title might suggest; rather, it is a dark, disturbing fairytale for grown up people that explores man's inhumanity to both his fellow humans and to other animals. There is a good deal of humor in the story as well, which makes it more powerful than if it were just unceasingly grim. John Hurt is wonderful, as always, and Christian Bale is surprisingly poignant and believable as poor Bobby. Don't expect ''realism'' in this movie, however, at least not the sort of realism that has come out of Britain recently in movies such as Trainspotting. Although suspenseful at times, this is more of a thinking man's fairytale than a realistic portrayal of modern life.

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