Last night I had the incredible pleasure of watching Disney Pixar’s “The Good Dinosaur” for the first time. I’m thrilled to review this movie, because it was more than a movie, it was a piece of story telling art. “The Good Dinosaur” stomps on to DVD and Blu-ray February 23, 2016.
There is SO much to discuss about this cinematic masterpiece, that it’s almost hard to chose where to begin. I don’t want to give any spoilers, but I can say this movie definitely didn’t travel the route I thought it would. There was also a full bushel of bonus features, that were almost as engaging as the main feature it’s self.
The first thing we always do when preparing for a movie night is to make some fresh popcorn, in a Disney World popcorn bucket of course! We went with our Animal Kingdom bucket this time around, since that’s where Dinosaur Land U.S.A. is located. My son was eagerly anticipating the lead up to the movie, from the moment the UPS man handed me the DVD all through dinner, and right up until we hit play. He has trouble in large theaters, so the moment a DVD arrives is a very cherished moment for him. We turned down the lights, and began our journey into a world of “what if the dinosaurs never went extinct”. From the moment the asteroid soared past earth my son was hooked. As an artist and writer I connected with this movie on multiple levels, as a child he connected with this movie on a deep level, that I’ve honestly never seen him have before. The movie does have some intense moments, but it’s no more intense or suspenseful than The Lion King or Frozen. However, at each moment he laughed, he flinched, be bounced, he oohed and he even shed some tears. Pixar is known for their beautiful animations, and ability to transport you into their worlds, but this was as if we were riding along side Arlo and Spot. This movie was not only a great story, but showed growth within responsibility and facing your fears.
This truly was an epic romp through a heartfelt story of family and finding one’s true self. The characters had a realness to them, even if they were talking dinosaurs. You could actually see Sam Elliot’s facial expressions channeling through his T-Rex character Butch. The development of the different evolutionary traits were splendid, with herbivores settling into agriculture, and carnivores embracing cattle herding. If you are a Disney Pixar fan, a dinosaur fan, or even just a fan of fantastic animation I urge you to check out “The Good Dinosaur”.
The movie wasn’t all that this DVD Blu-ray combo pack offered, there was SO many incredible bonus features! The bonus features included are:
THEATRICAL SHORT – Sanjay’s Super Team
TRUE LIES ABOUT DINOSAURS
THE FILMMAKERS’ JOURNEY
EVERY PART OF THE DINOSAUR
FOLLOWING THE T-REX TRAIL
HIDE AND SEEK
As well as Deleted Scenes.
The most notable of the bonus features was “Sanjay’s Super Team”. An Oscar nominated animated short that is tradition with Pixar movies. This short offered a little more realness than usual, a young boy who loves super heroes, and dreams of his own heroes. This short beautifully illustrates a modern coming together of a previous generation, with the next. One thing I loved was the change in animation styles during different sequences, during an intense action montage the animation moves to a cell shading like style, which gives you a very comic book like feel.
Truth and Lies about Dinosaurs was a great bit of educational knowledge as well as showing the difference between realism and suspension of disbelief. I think this is a great little montage to show children to help them understand make believe versus historic facts.
Recyclesaurus was one of the most enjoyable features. “The Good Dinosaur” crew competes to see which department can create the best dinosaur ever, using only discarded items from the studio’s “free table,” and a SINGLE roll of duct tape! Not only was it fun to watch this hysterical competition, I felt like we got to connect more with the staff of Pixar. Seeing their office and all the fun things they have going on at any time is truly amazing. The “Free Table” is a great idea too, people drop off things they no longer want, but aren’t worth throwing away, it’s a great example of what re-purposing and up-cycling can be about.
The Filmmakers Journey was beautiful. This was another great insider piece that showed all of the research and effort that went into making this stunning film.
Every Part of the Dinosaur wasn’t what I thought at first! I was expecting facts about dinosaur bones and the like, but it was actually a break down on the animation of these fun characters, and how they were brought to life.
My other absolutely favorite bonus feature was Following the T-Res Trail. You see a small bit of this in the Filmmakers Journey, but you really get to explore the fantastic research trip director Peter Sohn and the crew took to a real live cattle ranch. The Pixar crew giddy ups and herds cattle right along with the ranching family and experience a connection that is brought to life with the T-rex family in “The Good Dinosaur”.
Then there is a few cute videos, Dino Bites a montage of unique animation sequneces, and Hide & Seek a promotional short developed for the movie.
Of course there is commentary, deleted scenes which I won’t spoil, and trailers to finish off the treasure chest of Special Features perfectly.
There is really so much to love and discuss about “The Good Dinosaur” that I could honestly go on for days, but you’ll just have to watch it for yourself and come chat with me about it in the comments!
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