Is The Good Dinosaur as great as The Lion King?

Published: January 13, 2016

The movie will give you an experience while provoking your thoughts. PHOTO: IMDb

The Good Dinosaur is yet another impactful movie produced by Pixar. Do you remember the kind of sentiments Disney evoked within you while watching The Lion King, especially when Mufasa was killed by the herd in front of his son? That is the level of impact I am referring to.

The story begins with a twist. An asteroid which was meant to strike earth resulting in the extinction of dinosaurs, misses earth and life goes on as usual due to which humans (cavemen) exist along side with dinosaurs. While dinosaurs are seen talking, human beings communicate with gestures and sounds. This makes the movie unique, since this time around animals have been projected as vocal and structured characters as compared to humans. The dinosaurs are seen leading an organised life and have taken up farming as their profession.

The Good Dinosaur is about a family of Apatosaurus dinosaurs, which includes Henry, the father (Jeffrey Wright), Ida, the mother (Frances McDormand) and their three children Libby, Buck, and Arlo. Among the three children, Arlo (Raymond Ochoa) is extremely shy.

Photo: IMDb

The Good Dinosaur has an intense plot and great comic timing. Pixar has managed to construct and deliver a beautiful message about overcoming one’s fears and learning to trust others.

It’s safe to say Pixar has outdone itself in the visual department this time around. With gushing rivers and snow capped mountains, the animation department adds a realistic edge to the movie.

Photo: IMDb

Arlo, the youngest child, is separated from his family due to unfortunate circumstances. Luckily, he happens upon a young boy named Spot. At first these two are seen constantly bickering but eventually they become the best of friends.

The duo head out on a mission to reunite Arlo with his family and together they face all sorts of challenges. The most entertaining bit is the humour and affection shared between Arlo and Spot. One can’t help but fall in love with their warm friendship.

Photo: IMDb

Even though The Good Dinosaur has a strong story, there are a few drawbacks.

Firstly, Arlo comes off as an artificial shiny plastic dinosaur toy and definitely does not blend in with the beautiful scenery. Secondly, despite the stunning animations, the movie tends to drag and becomes quite boring, possibly because the structure of the story is not up to mark. Lastly, the audience may find themselves drawing up similarities between The Lion King, The Croods, and Ice Age.

However, even with all these shortcomings, the movie does manage to entertain viewers with vivid animation and attention to detail.

Photo: IMDb

The Good Dinosaur is definitely a thought provoking movie. You’ll be laughing at one point and crying the next, only because it invokes strong emotions from within. Don’t be surprised if you’re teary eyed towards the end of the movie.

It’s a must watch for children. I would rate this movie 4.5 out of 5.


Muhammad Omar Iftikhar

The author is a freelance writer and blogger and writes for various English dailies of Pakistan. He tweets @omariftikhar (

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.