It's commendable that Ratchet & Clank isn't as cynical and soulless an exercise as it could have been. With a release timed to coincide with the arrival of a highly anticipated video game, most corporate entities would have written this off as an excuse to foist a 90-minute commercial on unsuspecting kiddies. Instead, Canadian directors Jerrica Cleland and Kevin Munroe spin a predictable but amusing yarn about a cat-like creature named Ratchet (voiced by James Arnold Taylor, who also worked on the video games) with dreams of being a galactic defender and his tiny robot sidekick Clank (David Kaye, another game veteran). The story is old and the budget, as far as big-screen animated films go, is modest. But the film makes up for any shortcomings with witty writing and vivid, brightly coloured set pieces. Children will be entertained, and parents won't regret tagging along.