Reviewed by: Samuel Chetty
confronting and overcoming your fears / finding your courage
Are dinosaurs mentioned in the BIBLE? Answer
WHY did God create dinosaurs? Answer
NOAH’S ARK—Did Noah take dinosaurs on the Ark? Answer
|Featuring:||Raymond Ochoa … Arlo (voice)
Jack Bright … Spot (voice)
Jeffrey Wright … Poppa (voice)
Frances McDormand … Momma (voice)
Steve Zahn … Thunderclap (voice)
Anna Paquin … Ramsey (voice)
Sam Elliott … Butch (voice)
John Ratzenberger … Earl (voice)
Maleah Nipay-Padilla … Young Libby (voice)
Ryan Teeple … Young Buck (voice)
Jack McGraw … Young Arlo (voice)
Marcus Scribner … Buck (voice)
Peter Sohn … Forrest Woodbush (voice)
Mandy Freund … Downpour (voice)
Steven Clay Hunter … Coldfront (voice)
A.J. Buckley … Nash (voice)
David Boat … Bubbha (voice)
Carrie Paff … Lurleane (voice)
Calum Grant … Pervis (voice)
Pixar Animation Studios
Walt Disney Pictures
|Distributor:||Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures|
“The Good Dinosaur” is a movie about a young Apatosaurus named Arlo who yearns to be a good, courageous dinosaur, as opposed to a cowardly one, as his parents perceive him. Arlo is not very adventurous, and he is easily scared by places and creatures he is unfamiliar with. After an incident in which Arlo falls into a river, bangs his head and becomes temporarily unconscious while being swept away in a storm, he wakes up and finds himself far from home, and facing the situations he has always feared. To survive the journey home, he must become accustomed to confronting dangers and facing the unknown. And through an encounter with a tiny, humanlike creature named Spot, Arlo learns how to relate to someone very different from himself and work together to overcome challenges.
The story unfolds in a way that is sort of predictable, although a lot of action and oddities occur along the way. Arlo encounters animals with rather peculiar personalities—some nice and others vicious. Overall, “The Good Dinosaur” feels more serious in tone than usual for Pixar movies, with less humor in the dialogue.
The movie raises some thought-provoking questions regarding the theme of finding your courage. I think that a lot of Christians could relate to Arlo’s concern over whether he is a “good dinosaur.” Some Christians worry about whether they are “good Christians.” They hear of believers who stand up for their faith in very hostile situations, and then look at their own lives and wonder whether they measure up, and they feel they might lack the drive that motivates other Christians to make such stands for their faith.
In the movie, through an unexpected turn of events in his life, Arlo learns how to courageously and nobly respond in a way that makes it apparent he is indeed a good dinosaur. In our own lives, I believe that we can ask God to work in us such that, if our circumstances were to change dramatically, we would be able to stand strong, and that it would be an opportunity to demonstrate the strengths He has given us. In the Bible, Romans 8:28 (NRSV) states that, “We know that all things work together for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose.”
I find that “The Good Dinosaur” has meaningful themes, and I think that it is a good family movie, although I would be cautious about very young kids, due to some potentially scary scenes.
Violence: There are several instances where the main character Arlo is chased by animals trying to attack him, and there are several fighting sequences between the anthropomorphic animals. Early in the movie, Arlo’s father is swept away by a river during a storm, and he presumably dies, as he does not reappear in the story. Arlo, also, has a lot of hard, painful-looking falls during his journey, and some bruises and mild blood are shown in a couple scenes.
Language: A few euphemisms (“bull,” “dang,” “shoot”).
The seven-minute short film “Sanjay’s Super Team” which precedes “The Good Dinosaur” in theaters also raises some content concerns. A father and son are shown engaging in a Hindu meditation ritual, and the son daydreams of a battle in which a cartoon superhero and several gods team up to fight off a rather ugly-looking monster. Young children may find this scarier than any particular scene within “The Good Dinosaur” itself.
Violence: Moderate to heavy / Language: Minor (no profanity) / Sex/Nudity: Minor—Spot wears only a leaf diaper.
Visit our ChristianAnswers’ dinosaur site, where you’ll discover a mountain of knowledge and amazing discoveries. How do dinosaurs fit into human history and the Bible? You’ll find the answer to this and many more of your questions. Play games, browse and learn. Includes many helps for teachers and parents.
See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.
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