The Good Dinosaur
Bluray + Dvd + Digital HD
Release Date: February 23, 2016
Released By: Disney
Cast: Raymond Ochoa, Jack Bright, Steve Zahn, Jeffrey Wright, Frances McDormand, Sam Elliott, A.J. Buckley, Anna Paquin
Run Time: 94 Minutes
“The Good Dinosaur asks the question: What if the asteroid that forever changed life on Earth missed the planet completely and giant dinosaurs never became extinct? Pixar Animation Studios takes you on an epic journey into the world of dinosaurs where an Apatosaurus named Arlo makes an unlikely human friend. While traveling through a harsh and mysterious landscape, Arlo learns the power of confronting his fears and discovers what he is truly capable of.”
The Good Dinosaur is Disney/Pixar’s latest addition to their incredible list of movies. This story begins 65 Million Years ago when the asteroid that killed all of the dinosaurs, misses Earth, allowing them to keep their run of the planet. At the center of the movie we have a young Apatosaures named Arlo. Arlo is the runt of his family, and is often scared and unable to do the work that the rest of them can. As time goes on, Arlo’s siblings are able to grow and make their mark in the family but unfortunately, he continues to struggle. Eager to make his mark, Arlo is given an important task by his father. He must capture and kill the critter than is stealing their food. When the moment arrives, his fear holds him back from doing what he has to do and the critter escapes. In order to teach Arlo a lesson, his father takes him into the wild to go find the critter. While searching, a big storm appears and tragically takes the life of Arlo’s father. In the not so distant future, Arlo sees his mother struggling as she takes on extra work because of his father’s absence. He offers to help pick up some of the slack, and when he does, he comes across the critter again. Blaming the critter for his father’s death, he chases after him and they both accidentally fall into the fierce river. Unable to gain control, Arlo is pulled under the water, where he hits his head on a rock and gets knocked unconscious. Once he wakes up, he finds that he is lost, injured, and alone. While looking around he notices that he isn’t as alone as he thought, and that the critter is still with him. Now, this is where the true story begins because in order for Arlo to survive and find his way home, he and the critter must learn to get along. As the story goes on, Arlo and the critter (now known as Spot) see that they need each other, and ultimately start to care for one another. Even more unexpectedly, they find out that they’re not so different. In order to survive and get back home, the two of them have to go through many obstacles, both good and bad. They come across some dangerous enemies and some unlikely friends, all of which come with a lesson. The main lesson being to never give up. Without giving anymore away, I just want to say that I really enjoyed this movie. Each time I watch it, I like it even more than the last. The Good Dinosaur has some fantastic characters that are so easy to relate to. We all go through hard times where we feel like we’re not good enough. What matters most is not where you are but where you end up. Arlo’s character teaches us that even though things may be hard, it doesn’t mean that they’re impossible, and to never give up hope. Not only does The Good Dinosaur give us an important message, it also stuns us with some incredible visuals. Some of the scenic and landscape shots were absolutely breathtaking. It was so good that there were times where I wasn’t sure if the scene was animated or not. Another scene that was both gorgeous and unforgettable was firefly scene. The colors that were used, seemed to pop right off of the screen. All of which looked even better on Bluray. It’s one thing to see it in theaters but the Picture Quality on the Bluray allows you to experience all of this while in the comfort of your own home. The Audio Quality is also amazing, allowing you to hear the fantastic score just as you’re supposed to hear it. To make it even better, this Bluray is packed with some awesome Special Features.
“Sanjay’s Super Team”: Sanjay’s father wants him to learn and practice the Hindu Religion but all he wants to do is focus on cartoons and play with his toys. When he’s forced to stop and pay attention, his mind takes us on an incredible adventure. This Short Film shows the true beauty of a child’s imagination. It’s heartfelt and visually beautiful as well.
“True Lies About Dinosaurs”: This feature basically points out certain things that Pixar added to make the movie fun. Some of them being how the dinosaurs never really spoke English, and how they were never farmers like they were portrayed within the movie.
“Recyclosaurus”: This was really cool to see because it shows the fun and creativity of the Pixar crew. They had separate teams take “recycled” items from the office and compete to see who could create the best dinosaur from it. One that stood out to me most was when a crew looked like that had just thrown a bunch of random things on a table but when they shined a light on it, the shadow created characters from the movie.
“The Filmmakers’ Journey”: This is one of my favorite Special Features included. Here we learn this is the Directors first time directing a movie. He speaks about how he came from New York, and how he got to where he is now. I really connected to this part because I live in New York and I’m trying to make it in the same kind of industry, so it was inspiring to see. It also shows how they were very physical when it came to learning about their ideas for the movie. Instead of sitting in front of a screen, they went out into the world to see some beautiful scenery. You also get to see the progression of the Directors confidence, and how it ultimately turned into the beauty that The Good Dinosaur is.
“Every Part Of The Dinosaur”: This clip shows just how much goes into creating the characters. The way they look, act, think, see, move, everything. It’s a really cool detailed look into a world that a lot of people assume is simple.
“Following The T-Rex Trail”: In this feature we get to see how the Director and some of the crew went to visit a farmer and his family. They do this so that they can learn their ways, and put that knowledge into the story. There were some specific stories from this that influenced some of the scenes in the movie.
“Commentary from Director Peter Sohn, Story Supervisor Kelsey Mann, Supervising Animator Mike Ventuini, Director Of Photography/Lighting Sharon Calahan, and Supervising Technical Director Sanjay Bakshi”: This was a fun Commentary to listen to because they point out certain ideas, scenery, and inspiration that went into the movie. Each person gets their turn to speak about different parts of the movie that they were involved in. It’s like having an inside look at the creation and thought process of it all.
“Dino Bites”: This was just a fun selection of clips that were used as promotion for the movie that shows off the style and the characters.
“Hide And Seek”: This is another short promotional clip for the movie.
“Deleted Scenes (The Attack, Building The Silo, Waiting For Poppa)”: I’ve always enjoyed watching Deleted Scenes from movies. This time we get three scenes that weren’t used because each of them would’ve had an impact on the story. As we see each scene, the Director explains what’s going on, and why it wasn’t used. Another reason that it was really cool to see was because these scenes were all pre-production. Basically meaning that these are hand drawn sketches and not fully animated.
Overall, The Good Dinosaur is simple, yet beautiful. It has a heartfelt story that includes some very relatable characters and events throughout. It will make you laugh, it will make you worry, and it will make you cry. It has some of the best visuals I’ve seen from an animated movie thus far. Often making me question if it was real or not. The Picture & Audio Quality on the Bluray are fantastic but it doesn’t stop there. It’s also full of interesting Special Features that make the set even better. I absolutely recommend checking this one out.
Sanjay’s Super Team Theatrical Short (in 3D on the 3D disc)
True Lies About Dinosaurs
The Filmmakers’ Journey
Every Part of the Dinosaur
Following the T-Rex Trail
Commentary from director Peter Sohn, story supervisor Kelsey Mann, supervising animator Mike Venturini, director of photography/lighting Sharon Calahan, and supervising technical director Sanjay Bakshi.
Hide and Seek
– The Attack
– Building the Silo
– Waiting for Poppa
8 Out Of 10 Stars