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Mouse's Tail, The (La Queue de la Souris) — Benjamin Renner, 2007

In this beautifully animated fable made by Benjamin Renner at L’école de la Poudrière, a mouse is captured by a hungry lion and needs to find a way to outwit him and escape.

It uses few colours for a dramatic effect.

Classroom Activities

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Critical

  • There are few colours in the film. Look at how the 3 main colours, black, white, and red are used to represent what is happening. Use the Cs and Ss as a guide.
  • Stop at 00:37 seconds. Describe how the mouse is feeling.
  • Watch the first 40 seconds. Predict what you think will happen next.
  • What animals does the mouse bring to the lion?
  • Stop at 03:15. How is the mouse feeling now?
  • How does the camera movement hide what the mouse is doing to the lion?
  • In 50 words or less describe how the mouse outwits the lion.
  • Make up a character profile on the lion and/or the mouse. What words would you use to describe them?
  • Feelings – think about how the characters feelings change throughout the film. How do we know they change
  • Think carefully about the narrative of the film. Look at the questions here to help you do this.

Cultural

  • What is the message in this fable? What other fables do you know? Why were fables used to tell moral messages?
  • Look at fables from different cultures around the World. How are they similar or different to the ones we know?
  • Here is another fable about a lion and a mouse; compare the film to this written version.
  • Think about how lions are usually depicted in films. Look at other clips of them on screen. Is this a fair representation of lions?
  • Think about how mice are usually depicted in films. Look at other clips of them on screen. Is this a fair representation of mice?
  • Lions are an endangered species – why? What are countries doing to protect these animals?
  • Mice are often seen as vermin and killed in traps. Is this right or wrong? Debate the issue.

Creative

WRITE

  • How does the mouse get out of the snake’s mouth? Write the story.
  • Make a list of the strengths and weaknesses of the lion and the mouse.

FILMMAKING

  • Can you make your own film of this story? How could you film it differently? Use our Making a Film resource to help.

FRENCH

  • What does the title mean?
  • Can you find the French name for the other animals in the story?

DRAW

  • Make the film into a comic strip. You could use French or English.
  • The lion is always black in the film. Paint a lion in their natural colours. You could do the other animals too.

DRAMA

  • Act out what you think happens next. How does the lion escape?

RESEARCH

  • Research lions. What do they eat? Where do they live? You could make this into an information poster or leaflet.

Clip Details

Year of Production 2007
Genre Fairytale
Curriculum Areas Expressive Arts, Modern Languages, Literacy and English, Religious and Moral Education
Director Benjamin Renner
Country of Origin France, Africa
Medium / Content 2D Animation, Fiction, Colour, Sound, Subtitles
Themes Relationships, Danger / Fear, Culture / Society, Identity / Self, Intolerance / Misconceptions
Clip Length 04:10
Clip Length 04:10
Age Group P1-P4, P5-P7, S1-S3