Animation Heads: The Good Dinosaur

September 23, 2021


Photo provided by the authors

The Animation Heads (Keenan Sanford and Anthony Saccente) give their thoughts on The Good Dinosaur.

Hey folks, Keenan Sanford and Anthony Saccente here. And we’re the animation heads! Today we’ll give you our thoughts on The Good Dinosaur.

The Good Dinosaur is a 2015 animated film from Pixar animation studios. The film garnered generally positive reviews from critics for its themes and realism (which earned it various accolades), though its storytelling was not considered to be up to Pixar’s standards. It grossed $332.2 million on a $175–200 million budget, making it Pixar’s first box-office bomb.

The film explores the alternate history where non-avian dinosaurs never became extinct, following a young, timid Apatosaurus named Arlo, who meets an unlikely human friend while traveling through a dangerous and mysterious landscape.

Keenan’s Thoughts:

I heard from multiple people that this was a heartwarming story about a little baby human and an Apatosaurus. And it was. I’m not usually a big fan of these types of movies but it actually wasn’t too bad. I really liked the idea of a meteor missing earth and all of a sudden, dinosaurs and humans switch roles. It was a good idea but I really felt like they could’ve had a bit more background on how the missed meteor affected life on earth. The animation of the movie in regards to the background scenes was phenomenal. At times, it looked like they put in actual scenes of mountains, trees, and water. However, it seemed like they tried to make the animation more kid friendly instead of making it more realistic, which if they’re making a kids movie, isn’t necessarily a bad thing however, for the general audience, it’s not a great thing. Overall, not a bad film to review for my first film review but had potential to be much better.



Anthony’s Thoughts:

This film felt like a missed opportunity for Pixar. On the surface, it has a lot going for it. From the human and dinosaur relationship to the awe-inspiring backgrounds. But it just didn’t seem to mesh. And I think this has a lot to do with the character aspect. Overall, the characters are just not that interesting to follow. Arlo feels a little much with his whiny attitude and his constant complaining, kind of like Taran from The Black Cauldron (1985). Spot had some cute moments, but the misunderstood mischievous character has been done before and he does nothing to separate himself from the others. The one scene I really loved was when Arlo was tossing Spot up above the clouds because we as the audience really got to appreciate the gorgeous landscapes that this film has to offer. Also, what is Sam Elliott doing in this movie? They have him casted as this buck-toothed ranching dinosaur and let me tell you, his voice does not match the character design in the slightest! So yeah, this movie has its issues. But it’s realistic landscapes and steady heart make it worth a watch.