THE GOOD DINOSAUR Review — No Dynamite Here

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The Good Dinosaur ReviewRegardless of what I say, parents are going to take their kids out to see Pixar’s latest offering, The Good Dinosaur. And that’s not a bad thing. Kids will love the Dino Does the Old West theme, and won’t mind the fact that the big green guys look like something conceived by a student in Animation 101. But adults might find themselves restless and bored, as I was, with the simplistic and silly plot.

I guess the device of killing a parent in the beginning never gets old. The rest of the film then follows the coming of age arc you see in too many children’s films, with the obligatory villains and sidekicks. I will say, however, that dinosaurs plowing fields, harvesting corn and herding cattle is novel, if disconcerting. Still, it’s nothing that really keeps you glued to your seat.

In fact, I attended a screening at Disney’s fabulous El Capitan Theater on Hollywood Boulevard, and in the middle of the film, after a brief trip the the ladies room, I found myself exploring the dinosaur exhibit down in the basement, rather than return to my seat, because I could predict exactly what would happen while I was gone. And sure enough, it did.

Even the animation felt a bit lax. Now there are gorgeous landscapes, which will pretty much be lost on kids, but they are far more worthy of Pixar than the lazily drawn Apatosauruses family. Could they at least have given the males and females some distinguishing features? And how about a little leathery looking skin, rather than that shiny green modeling clay effect?

Voice performances from relative newcomer Raymond Ochoa in the lead, Francis McDormand, Geoffrey Wright, Steve Zahn and Anna Paquin are all adequate, although Sam Elliott stands out, as usual. Other than that, director Peter Sohn, who has done a lot more voice acting than directing, just feels uninspired, which is extremely uncharacteristic for a Pixar film.

Rated PG

1 Hour 40 Minutes

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THE GOOD DINOSAUR Review — No Dynamite Here


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Lisa Johnson Mandell

Lisa Johnson Mandell

Lisa Johnson Mandell is an award winning journalist, author and film/TV critic. She can be heard regularly on Cumulus radio stations throughout the US, and on BBC Radio.

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