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Western Animation / Lucky and Zorba

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Lucky and Zorba (original title: La gabbianella e il gatto, "The little seagull and the cat") is a 1998 Italian animated film directed by Enzo D'Alò. It is an adaptation of a 1996 book called The story of a seagull and the cat who taught her to fly (Historia de una gaviota y del gato que le enseñó a volar) by the Chilean writer Luis Sepúlveda.

As the story begins, we meet a young seagull named Kenga. While with her flock, she gets dirtied by an petrol flood. She blindly flies to a city, where she finally crashes into a garden, right on top of the cat who lives there, Zorba. Because of the petrol on her feathers, he refuses to eat her, and she gets him to promise three things: that he would not eat her egg when she lays it, that he would take care of it until it hatches, and that he would teach the newborn to fly. She then dies of exhaustion.

Some days after, the egg hatches, and Zorba names the newborn Lucky.

Meanwhile, the rats of the town plan an uprising against the town's cats, and their plans involve Lucky...

Lucky and Zorba contains examples of:

  • Big Bad: The rat leader, named Big Rat.
  • Cute Kitten: Yoyo, although he's very much a Bratty Half-Pint. Lucky is cute as well, and all the good guys treat her like they would a kitten.
  • Dub Name Change: While most names are either left as-are or are translated literally (Fortunata to Lucky, il Colonnello to the Colonel, etc.), a few are changed around more overtly:
    • Secretario ("Secretary") becomes Gopher.
    • Pallino ("Small ball/spot") becomes Yoyo.
    • Rosa dei Venti ("Rose of the Winds") becomes Salty Brine.
  • Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: During his song, Big Rat declares victory because he believes all the cats have gone crazy, as it's the only reason he can think of that the cats would hatched and raise Lucky, a bird.
  • Imprinting: The whole movie revolves around it, as the seagull chick Lucky mistake the cat Zorba for her mother after she hatches in front of him.
  • Intellectual Animal: One of Zorba's friends is literate.
  • Interspecies Adoption: For all intents and purposes, Lucky the seagull ends up being adopted and raised to independence by a housecat.
  • Species Title: The Italian title translates to "The little seagull and the cat".
  • Swarm of Rats: The rats plan an uprising against the town's cats.
  • Trojan Horse: Or rather Trojan Cheese. The cats give a giant wheel of cheese to the rats, but they are hidden inside. With this stratagem, they are able to rescue Lucky and Yoyo.
  • Would Hurt a Child: Big Rat kidnaps Lucky and plans to let the rats eat her. Even when Yoyo comes in to save her, the rats just overpower him and take him as an additional meal.. Fortunately, they are saved in the nick of time by Zorba and his friends.
  • You Dirty Rat!: The main antagonists are a group of evil rats. They even have a Villain Song named "We are the Rats". In the original version of the movie, they refer to themselves as mice, however.