Why “Ratatouille” is a part of my childhood

Linguini (right) holding Remy (left/rat) in his palm, with a Paris skyline in the background.
Linguini (right) holding Remy (left/rat) in his palm, with a Paris skyline in the background. Photo credit: Disney/Pixar

Many people like Pixar’s popular animated movie, “Ratatouille,” because of its story and how fun it is. For me, it’s different.

What made this movie a big part of my childhood wasn’t much about the story, it was about being able to watch it with my family.

As a child, I didn’t have the best living situation. I lived in a duplex with five other families, in a small motor home and a garage. For the most part of my early life, I never slept on a real bed, it was either a couch or a fold-out bed that I often had to share.

The multiple housing changes at such a young age took a toll on me and my older brother. So when my parents bought “Ratatouille” on DVD from the swap meet movie pirater, it was such a happy moment for my brother and I, as we weren’t able to go and see it in theaters.

The next two hours would be one of the happiest moments of my life and my childhood. Even though our living situation wasn’t the best, we made do with what we could. All of us together, in a little garage, laughing, smiling and happy.

One of the more notable scenes that I relate to in the movie is when restaurant critic Anton Ego eats a dish of ratatouille. After the first bite, Anton gets a flashback of his childhood, just as watching “Ratatouille” reminds me of my childhood.

Even though I haven’t watched the movie in a while, it always reminds me of my childhood, and that’s a memory that won’t ever be forgotten by myself or my family.

A quote from the film that had always stuck with me, even after many re-watches, was from Anton near the very end of the movie.

“That in the grand scheme of things, the average piece of junk is probably more meaningful than our criticism designating it so,” he said.

To others, this just might be another Pixar movie, but to me, it’s a piece of my childhood.

Since then, there has been another addition to the family, and he has yet to see “Ratatouille.”

I’m disappointed in myself for not showing the film to him yet. I want him to enjoy the story of a boy and his pet chef rat in Paris the same way that I did when I was a child.

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