The premise of Rat
is simple enough: when hard-drinking Hubert Flynn comes home late and bedraggled for the umpteenth time, he wakes up transformed into the rat he truly is. Flynn's family is upset and surprised, but somehow they recognise the appropriateness of this turn of events--Flynn's wife Conchita (Imelda Staunton) even takes a smug satisfaction in her husband's fate. When a writer arrives and offers to help Conchita write a bestselling book about this odd turn of events, she seizes on the opportunity to squeeze something positive from the man who's made her so miserable--and in the process, becomes a bit of a rat herself. Rat
takes a little while to establish its comic tone, but once it settles into a kind of Irish magic realism, the deadpan reactions of the family becomes strikingly funny. For example, when Conchita takes the rat to visit Flynn's favourite tavern, one barfly blithely comments, "Still, all things considered, he's not looking so bad". Pete Postlethwaite plays Flynn in his brief time as a non-rat, and all the performances are excellent; particularly charming is Kerry Condon as Flynn's daughter, who desperately tries to preserve some sense of dignity for her altered dad. With its whimsical humour and sardonic streak, Rat
is no doubt destined to become a cult favourite. Fans of Monty Python will appreciate the film's sly verbal wit. --Bret Fetzer, Amazon.com
Pete Postelthwaite is Hubert Flynn, a bread delivery man who loves his Guinness and horse racing more than his wife, and who one night comes home from the pub to discover that he has been turned into a rat. His wife Conchita (Imelda Staunton) is not impressed. She does not forgive easily and refuses to take pity on him. But when a ghost-writer knocks on the door offering Conchita to put their story into a book and then a film of the book and then a book of the film, she is sorely tempted to cash in. This sets the stage for a series of comical adventures for Hubert the rat.