Pixar Animation Studios has created one animated hit after another – Toy Story, Up, Inside Out, and many more. But with The Good Dinosaur, I think the company has stumbled and come up with its first genuine “miss.” Derivative, with no appealing characters and little character development , the movie is good only for a Saturday rental to keep the kids entertained – for a while, anyhow. The premise is interesting. In this film, the meteorite that caused the extinction of the the dinosaurs actually misses the earth and dinosaurs live long into the age of the cave man and prosper in a terrain that looks like the American Northwest. An apatosaurus couple raise corn on a farm and has three youngsters. The last to be born, Arlo, turns out to be the ultimate hero of the story. During his journey to get home, after having been swept away
by a raging river, he encounters a human child who walks on all fours and behaves more like a dog than a boy, so Arlo names him Spot. For a while then, we have a species bender of a boy and his dog played as a dino and his human. A lot could have been built out of this relationship, but the producers settle for stock humor and treacly emotions. The Blu-ray disc looks fabulous. Technically, The Good Dinosaur is as good as any Pixar masterpiece, especially in the sound department, with a surround mix that could serve as “how to do it” lesson for all. But ultimately it’s all on the bland side. That goes for the extras, too, which are at best, merely cute, and at worst, boring. But stay tuned. The included trailer for Finding Dory indicates that Pixar will bounce back with a bit hit in June!