[Screen It]


(2003) (voices of Jean-Claude Donda, Michel Robin) (PG-13)

Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Tense Scenes
Moderate Minor Extreme *Mild Extreme
Mild None Mild None None
Smoking Tense Family
Topics To
Talk About
Heavy Heavy Minor Mild Heavy

Animated Drama: An older woman enlists the aid of triplet performers to help her rescue her adult grandson who's been kidnapped by mafia types interested in his biking abilities.
Champion is a lonely little boy. Living with his grandmother, Madame Souza, nothing makes him happy - not even a puppy named Bruno - except for the famous biking race, the Tour de France. Once Madame Souza realizes this, she buys him a tricycle and sets him on his course to possible fame and happiness.

Years later, Champion is a young man whose life is completely dictated by his training schedule. During a contest leading up to the big race, however, Champion and two other bikers are kidnapped by several mafia goons. When his grandmother learns of that, she and Bruno set out on a rescue mission that eventually leads them to the metropolis of Belleville.

It's there that they meet the legendary performing troupe, The Triplets of Belleville, a trio of elderly and eccentric sisters who were big in the '30s. With their aid, Madame Souza attempts to rescue her grandson from the clutches of the Mafioso who's using him and others for his own financial gain.

The "cartoon" aspect may be enticing to some, but this film is really geared toward adults and older teens.
For images involving sensuality, violence and crude humor.
It's debatable whether kids view animated characters as role models, but here's a quick look at the prominent behaviors of the main ones.
  • CHAMPION is a taciturn young man whose entire life focus is on the Tour de France. He trains hard and must then deal with being kidnapped by the mafia.
  • MADAME SOUZA is his grandmother and personal trainer who pushes him during training and then sets out to rescue him from some mafia goons.
  • THE TRIPLETS are three elderly and eccentric sisters who still perform on stage and decide to aid Souza in her quest to rescue her son.


    Curious if this title is entertaining, any good, and/or has any artistic merit?
    Then read OUR TAKE of this film.

    (Note: The "Our Take" review of this title examines the film's artistic merits and does not take into account any of the possibly objectionable material listed below).

    The following is a brief summary of the content found in this animated drama that's rated PG-13. With almost no dialogue, there's no profanity or colorful phrases. A female dancer's (animated) breasts are briefly seen during a stage performance (that literally drives the men crazy), there's a brief scene featuring some prostitutes and some other skin is briefly and partially present.

    Some mafia types kidnap some cyclists and then try to shoot and kill them and their rescuers, while some characters strike others. Some of those goons end up being injured or killed during such scenes (no blood or gore). Such characters obviously have bad attitudes and some of those scenes might possibly be unsettling or suspenseful to sensitive or very young viewers, but this isn't a film for kids.

    Various characters drink and/or smoke, while some imitative behavior and several instances of crude humor are present. Should you still be concerned about the film's appropriateness for yourself or anyone else in your home, you may want to look more closely at our detailed listings for more specific information regarding the film's content.

    For those concerned with flashes of the light on the screen, some of that occurs during a nighttime thunderstorm at sea.

  • The tops of some of the buildings in the city look like wine bottles.
  • We see a wine and liquor store in the background of a shot.
  • Some miscellaneous people have wine.
  • Miscellaneous people have wine.
  • A blimp logo reads "In vino veritas."
  • A sign reads, "French Wine Center."
  • Tops of certain buildings again look like wine bottles.
  • The main mafia guy tastes and then spits out some wine. Moments later, some champagne is poured for him.
  • We see what look like wine transfusion bags leading down to Champion and two other bikers' arms while they're attached to a large biking machine.
  • Miscellaneous people have champagne.
  • A mafia guy pours some wine.
  • Crude humor includes the following: We see various obese women exiting a car with one having a small man stuck in her clothed butt crack. We see two men (from behind) with their heads out of two ship portals (suggesting seasickness from rough seas, but we don't see or hear anything else related to that). We briefly see floating human excrement in a hallway toilet. We see frog stew with various frog parts floating in it (that the triplets eat, as does Madame Souza, albeit begrudgingly). We then see them having frog skewers and later frog popsicles that they lick.
  • We see a presumably dead pig (stitches across its eyes and belly) that's propped up "riding" a stationary bike in a storefront display.
  • The mafia has kidnapped Champion and two other bikers and then chained them to a stationary biking machine where they're to be used in a betting fashion (to see who will outlast the others regarding their stamina). Later, they and others shoot at and try to kill Madame Souza, Champion and the Triplets.
  • Scenes listed under "Violence" might be unsettling or suspenseful to some viewers (but more to those sensitive to such matters than the general public).
  • Handguns/Grenades/Rocket Launcher: Carried and/or used to wound or kill others or cause property damage. See "Violence" for details.
  • Some mafia guys spread tacks on the road to flatten a truck's tires.
  • One of the triplets throws a hand grenade into a marsh that causes an explosion that sends frogs flying up into the air and down into her net (for dinner).
  • Madame Souza acts as if she's blind to trail a mafia worker in the city.
  • None.
  • A mild amount of suspenseful and dramatic music plays in the film.
  • None.
  • None.
  • As the triplets perform a number on stage in the past, a topless dancer (all animated and somewhat exaggerated) appears and shakes her banana-covered rear as well as her bare breasts. This drives the men in the audience crazy. They storm the stage and start ripping off her bananas, prompting her to flee off stage.
  • We see an obese woman in small shorts from behind her.
  • We see a miscellaneous man with male beefcake type posters and prints on the wall behind him (possibly a gay reference).
  • We see the top of a seated man's butt crack as well as a waitress' cleavage (all animated).
  • We see a man and a presumed prostitute standing in a hallway with her leg up along his body. She's somewhat scantly clad and it's possible there's a split-second view of her bare breasts. We then see other prostitutes in the hallway.
  • Various mafia goons smoke cigarettes or cigars (at least 10 times) while Madame Souza's driver rolls and smokes his own cigarettes a few times.
  • A photo on the wall shows Champion's father with a cigarette in his mouth.
  • Madame Souza worries about her kidnapped grandson and sets out to rescue him.
  • The Tour de France and the training that must be done before competing in it.
  • Madame Souza has what appears to be a club foot.
  • The film's portrayal of the big city being populated with exaggeratedly obese people (even the Statue of Liberty is shown as being obese and holding a burger).
  • A cartoon version of Fred Astaire shows up on the stage and loses his shoes. They become carnivorous monsters (retaining their size) and proceed to swallow the lower half of him before dragging him off stage.
  • A toy train runs over Bruno the dog's tale.
  • One of the triplets throws a hand grenade into a marsh that causes an explosion that sends frogs flying up into the air and down into her net (for dinner).
  • We hear but don't see the final part of a frog being squashed by a passing train.
  • Some mafia goons aim their handguns at Bruno the dog.
  • Madame Souza repeatedly whacks a boy scout with a cane (used while feigning blindness) as he tries to help her across a street.
  • An exhausted biker falls from a biking machine used by the mafia. A mafia man then pulls a gun, we hear a gunshot (presumably shooting the biker dead) and then see the smoking gun.
  • One of the triplets knocks out two people with blows to the head with her frying pan.
  • After Bruno barks in the underbelly of a large biking machine, a mafia guy slowly approaches with his gun drawn. A triplet then knocks the gun from his hand with a frying pan. The two struggle over the gun until the triplet head-butts the mafia guy.
  • Hordes of mafia guys pull their guns and then fire wildly at the triplets and others in a darkened auditorium. One of the triplets then pulls out a grenade and moments later a large explosion goes off in the auditorium (presumably killing many of the mafia men -- but we don't see any bodies or gore, etc.).
  • The large mafia biking machine slowly crashes out through an exterior wall. Various mafia goons then open fire on it and the triplets as they make their escape and a chase ensues.
  • Various mafia cars crash into each other during a chase scene. One nearly runs over a baby carriage, but crashes short of it and we see one of the goons hanging out from the wreckage, unconscious or dead.
  • The goons continue to fire at the biking machine and triplets. One of the latter throws her frying pan that hits a goon on the head, knocking him out. His car then rolls down a flight of stairs (with him still up through the sunroof) where it explodes at the bottom. A triplet then throws a wrench that breaks another windshield, causing that car to crash (with the goon hanging from it, unconscious or dead).
  • A train smashes into one car in its way on some tracks and nearly hits the mafia biking machine (and those on it) as it barely passes by. As the train goes between the machine and a goon, the goon fires at the machine but hits the train instead.
  • After trying to head up a steep hill with a goon through its sunroof, a car tips over backwards and then flips and careens down the hill (with the guy still out through the sunroof, presumably wounding or killing him).
  • Madame Souza "trips" an approaching mafia car, sending it flying off a bridge, through the air and down into a large ship's smokestack. It's then blown upwards into the air by the resultant explosion.

  • Reviewed January 7, 2004 / Posted January 30, 2004

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