20 January, 2014

Ernest and Celestine (DVD) Screenplay & dialogue by Daniel Pennac [Elizabeth, Highland Park Library]

Witty, delightful, clever, great storytelling! This French animated DVD is based on author Gabrielle Vincent's children's picture books about Ernest the bear and Celestine, a mouse. In Ernest and Celestine, the bears live above ground, the mice have their town below and both have their own police. Ernest and Celestine are both outcasts from their own communities and are soon on the run from their respective gendarmes, leading to some very clever, very funny "cops and robbers" chases.

Just about anyone aged from 5 up, and many younger, will enjoy this film although parents or older siblings may have to read the English subtitles to children learning to read. That could add to the fun, but you do not need children in the house to appreciate this pearl of French film animation. Unfortunately, you do need to be able to play Region 2 DVDs.

The artwork and muted colouring closely follow the illustrations in the books. This will appeal to children who are familiar with the books but some children who are used to brightly coloured, Disney-type cartooning with frenetic characters and soundtrack may find it dull. Borrow it anyway, you are sure to enjoy it!

Auckland Libraries has several of Gabrielle Vincent's Ernest and Celestine titles both in English and Chinese and one in Korean.

Title: Ernest and Celestine 
Director: Benjamin Renner
Published: 2013
Publisher: StudioCanal

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