ERNEST & CELESTINE is a movie that achieves what most films aspire to, particularly those for children: it transports you wholly to another world. This can be seen from the very start, with crude drawings taking form over the credits style. These simple images reveal themselves to be a storybook drawn by the film’s protagonist, the precocious (though never obnoxiously so) young mouse, Celestine. Right away, we are struck by the effortless beauty of these images; in this scene and periodically throughout the film, the characters and their surroundings bleed into the foreground like watercolor paint soaking into a sheet of paper. It is as powerful an introduction into the film’s gentle aesthetic as is possible.