Monday, 14 December 2015

Entertainment Monday: The Good Dinosaur (Monday December 14, 2015)

Entertainment Monday: The Good Dinosaur (Pixar) * CONTAINS SPOILERS *

The Good Dinosaur Trailer 

Life has been pretty busy lately as is apt to happen around the Holiday Season each year.  I have been spending a lot of time buying presents, wrapping presents and when I get a couple of days in a row off, going to visit my Mum.  It was in visiting mom this past week that we had the opportunity for a small respite from the holiday craziness when we went to see The Good Dinosaur at her local theatre.

The Good Dinosaur is a Pixar film and the movie is a coming of age story about a dinosaur named Arlo.  Arlo is the runt of the litter and has an older brother and sister who thought hatched at essentially the same time are much larger than him.  Arlo struggles to keep up with the chores on the family farm while his much more outgoing and also physically larger siblings are able to accomplish the chores laid about before them by their parents and "make their mark".  Their marks are not only figurative marks symbolizing their accomplishments but also a literal mark placed on the family silo which protects the harvest for the approaching Winter.

Arlo is held back a little bit by his lack up size, but mostly by his fears as he finds it more difficult to "make his mark" then his sister or brother.   Arlo is forced to face his fears after a natural disaster separates him from his family.  Arlo  must find his way back to his family and cover a vast expanse of land if he is going to survive before Winter comes.  On his journey he becomes friends with Spot, the cave boy who played a roll in Arlo getting lost to begin with.  Spot does not speak and he behaves much in the manner that a puppy might rather than a human being.  Spot becomes very helpful in assisting Arlo on his journey back to the farm.  Along the way Arlo and Spot face a number of challenges including a couple of run-ins with an evil pack of Pterodactyls.  They also strike a deal with a Daddy Tyrannosaurus Rex and his two children to help them round up their Buffalo herd in exchange for some help reaching a watering hole that will lead them back to the river.  The river is an essential guide for Arlo to find his way back home to the farm.  His father taught him that whenever he got lost that he could find his way back as long as he found the river. 

Along Arlo's and Spot's travels and adventures Arlo learns a lot about friendship, bravery and family.  There are some sad parts to Arlo's story which factor into the coming of age aspect of his journey home.  Once Arlo makes it home, much to the delight of his worried family who had given him up for dead, he earns his mark and gets to add his print to the family silo. 

I liked the Good Dinosaur.  I don't think that it compares with some other Pixar movies, like the Toy Story movies for example, but it was worth the price of admission.  The reason I would not give it a glowing review is because I do not think the story line is terribly imaginative and as such a lot of it is predictable.  The characters are all likable though, save for the bad guys of course. I think the movie is okay for children for the most part.  There are some sad and potentially scary points in the film which may not be suitable for really young kids below 6 years old or so.  Otherwise the message is a good one and there is a somewhat happy ending so you can leave the theatre feeling good about Arlo's fate. 

I am sure that if the movie does well in theatres we will see a Good Dinosaur II.  There is still a lot of available material for Pixar and they could further develop the story of Arlo or Spot or Arlo's family in another movie if they wish to do so. 


  1. I haven't watched the movie before but it might be something I eventually see during the holidays. I thought it was interesting how the dinosaurs are human-like which is something I wasn't expecting. I heard this movie is a flop that hasn't made as much money as they expected so I don't know if there will be a sequel.

  2. I will not be heart broken if there is no sequel. I feel like Pixar has set some pretty high standards with some of their films previously and The Good Dinosaur was not the "Great" Dinosaur, so I could understand if this is it for Arlo and Spot's stories.

    I think the Disney animated movie Zootopia that should be coming out soon in 2016 looks really good though.


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