The Good Dinosaur (2015) Movie Review
In Pixar’s 16th outing, they ask a simple question. What if the asteroid that destroyed the dinosaurs missed? This means that dinosaurs would still be roaming the earth far longer, and the story takes place when a young dinosaur named Arlo loses his family, and after meeting a young human (named Spot), they go on an adventurous journey together to find Arlo’s family, and along a way encounter life-changing messages and experiences.
Pixar has been known for their ambitious, emotionally and unique animated films that appeal to both kids and adults alike. I was holding out for The Good Dinosaur to be another pixar classic that will live on for years to come like the three Toy Story movies have. So did it reach my hopes? Maybe it wasn’t as amazing as some of their earlier entries, but Pixar manages to still prove that they can make films.
First off, the animation in the film is absolutely astounding. I mean, it’s Pixar. It all looks so beautiful, and at times I felt like it was real. The adventurous aspect as well as the nature aspect felt realistic to the story, and for the most part was very well executed.
The film has a lot of wild and clever humor, which blends in with the rest of the film very well. But when you look at the film deeply, you will discover an emotional core to it all. Important morals about family, friendship, trust, bravery and courage are all great messages that are shown here. Arlo’s clear intention to find his family shows a lot about his character, his past experiences and what he strives for. When he starts to connect with Spot, true and beautiful friendship is found and brings the story forward emotionally. The characters are all great, but a sly few came off as annoying and wasteful. The story ultimately is emotional, but very predictable as well. You know what to expect in terms of sequence of events, which hurts it’s emotional core.
The directing by Peter Sohn is solid, and he managed to make what could have been Pixar’s biggest failure into a solid and well-driven character movie. The story was told in a way that caught my attention, and the comedy aspect was great as well. The emotional core is also blended well together with it’s fun tone, and Sohn’s attempt was well done. I wish this was a tear-jerker, even though the story was sad. But I never at one point cried. The tale of survival is entertaining, however feels underwhelming in some aspects. It’s too predictable to be completely moved by it, but overall works in the end just fine.
The film has a good screenplay, and feels right to the morals and tale that is trying to be told here. The film’s musical score also fits with not only the emotional core when needed, but the fun and adventurous feel of the journey and the wilderness.
What the film really got right was blending fun aspects with sad aspects, which is something Pixar has always gotten right. It also is a great fit for the whole family, they will all most likely enjoy this wild treat. Even with it’s flaws, it still is a fun yet sad time at the movies. Besides it’s look at friendship and the animation, The Good Dinosaur isn’t anything amazing, but the touching story makes it a solid treat.