Pixar’s winning streak continues! The Good Dinosaur is loaded with cute. It will make kids happy and parents can love it, too.
TGD asks: “What if the asteroids that many claim decimated the earth’s dino population millions of year ago… had missed?” Dinosaurs would have co-existed with early man.
The plant-eating dinosaur family in the story features parents voiced by Jeffrey Wright and Frances McDormand. Of their three offspring, Arlo (Raymond Ochoa) is the runt of the litter. He’s the movie’s central character.
Arlo catches a “critter” in the family’s silo, rustling food. The critter is a small human boy. Arlo and the boy fall into the river and are swept away on a journey of adventure. They face a variety of challenges and peril, including from other animals, as they struggle to return home.
One ally they meet is a dino voiced by Sam Elliott who tells the pair a story about how he got a scar on his face from a battle with crocodiles.
Peter Sohn, who has been a part of the Pixar team for several movies, is the director. This is his first time directing a feature.
The landscapes of an unspoiled world where the story takes place recall parts of the western U.S. The thrilling soundtrack stirs memories of The Magnificent Seven theme and certain Aaron Copland compositions. The old cinematic trick of making pretty pictures with fireflies (as seen in Fantasia and Avatar) is employed beautifully here.
The Good Dinosaur lacks the adult appeal of last summer’s Pixar hit Inside Out. But for adults bringing kids and grandkids, TGD is solid entertainment that you will not find tedious.
The Pixar short that precedes TGD is a trippy thing involving, interestingly, Eastern religion—not the normal subject matter for animated entertainment.