Film Review “The Good Dinosaur”

Starring the voices of: Jeffrey Wright and Frances McDormand
Directed by: Peter Sohn
Rated: PG
Running time: 1 hr 50 mins
Walt Disney Pictures

Our Score: 3.5 out of 5 stars

65 million years ago a rogue meteor hit the earth, changing the world drastically. One of the big changes was the extinction of the dinosaurs. But what if that meteor had missed?

Meet the Apatosaurus family. Momma and Poppa welcome the arrival of three eggs and their contents. Soon, the family is complete with Libby, Buck and Arlo. These particular dinosaurs are farmers, and they’re bodies allow them the opportunity to act as both the plow and the sprinkler system. Brainy Libby helps out, as does brawny Buck. Sadly, tiny Arlo can only feed the chickens (or at least the prehistoric version of chickens) and help fill the silo with corn so the family can survive the winter. Things go well until, like most films, tragedy strikes and Arlo finds himself on his own. Cue the sad music.

From the PIXAR division of Disney, “The Good Dinosaur” is a visual treat for the eyes. From the ice covered mountains to the rushing river waters it is amazing the advances that have been made in computer generated animation. Like most Disney films, the hero soon finds himself in trouble, where he is rescued by a young boy that Arlo names “Spot.” The best way to describe Spot is to ask if you remember the Feral Kid from “The Road Warrior.” If so, you now have an image of what I’m talking about.

The film follows Arlo and Spot as they make their way back to Three Claw Mountain. Along the way they meet some colorful creatures, including a trio of T-rex’s led by Sam Elliott. The many characters are vividly rendered and all are memorable. And frightening. I have no idea how this film received a PG rating. There is death in and around the story, including a scene where a cute, saucer-eyed animal is suddenly gobbled down and then torn to shreds by a pair of dueling pterodactyls! If you’re taking children under the age of 7 prepare to dry their tears.

Win a DVD of “Denver The Last Dinosaur: Complete Series” [ENDED]

To celebrate the release of the 80’s cartoon “Denver The Last Dinosaur”, Media Mikes is excited to giveaway one (1) copy of the Complete Series on DVD to our readers. If you would like to enter for your chance to win one of this prize, please leave us a comment below or send us an email with your favorite 80’s cartoon. This giveaway will remain open until October 3rd at Noon, Eastern Time. This is open to all of our Media Mikes readers worldwide. One entry per person, per household. All other entries will be considered invalid. Media Mikes will randomly select winners. Winners will be alerted via email.

Fun for the whole family, the “Denver the Last Dinosaur” Complete Series DVD is packed with bonus features, including interviews with Creative Director Jeremy Corray, image galleries and seven additional episodes of various classic cartoons, including “Saber Rider and the Star Sheriffs,” making it the perfect set for fans, collectors and 80s cartoon enthusiasts.

“Denver the Last Dinosaur” revolves around the adventures of the last dinosaur, Denver, a Corythosaurus who has been released from his egg by a group of multicultural modern California teens: Jeremy, Mario, Shades, Wally and Casey, along with tag-along older sister, Heather. The kids teach Denver the finer points of skateboarding and other pastimes while protecting him from concert promoter Morton Fizzback who wants to use the dinosaur to make money.

Book Review “Dinosaur Kisses” by David Ezra Stein

Author/Illustrator: David Ezra Stein
Age Range: 2 – 5 years
Hardcover: 32 pages
Publisher: Candlewick
Release Date: August 6, 2013

Our Score: 3.5 out of 5 stars

When I was a kid, I was in love with anything dinosaurs. I couldn’t get enough. It was also around the time when “Jurassic Park” was released which made my addiction even easier to feed. “Dinosaur Kisses” follows an energetic young dinosaur figures out her own way to give a kiss in the latest from the creator of the Caldecott Honor–winning Interrupting Chicken.

Official Premise: For newly hatched dinosaur Dinah, the world is an exciting place. There is so much to see and do. She tries this — STOMP! And she tries that — CHOMP! Then she sees a kiss and knows just what she wants to try next. Who can she kiss? And after a few disastrous attempts, can she figure out how to give someone a kiss without whomping, chomping, or stomping them first?

I think the audience for this book is a little older than my 16 month old daughter but I am sure that this funny new picture book from David Ezra Stein would entertain kids with no issue at all. The animation is fun and the colors are very warm and welcoming. Personally, you really can’t go wrong with a good picture book if you have great animation. I think that also both boys and girls will enjoy this despite the fan that Dinah is a female dinosaur.


Related Content

Book Review “Dinosaur Art: The World’s Greatest Paleoart”

Edited by: Steve White
Foreword: Philip J. Currie
Introduction: Scott D. Sampson
Hardcover: 188 pages
Publisher: Titan Books
Release Date: September 4, 2012

Our Score: 4 out of 5 stars

Growing up as a kid, dinosaurs have always thrilled me whether it is in pictures or movies. But there is something about looking through an paleoartist illustration of these creatures that is so breathtaking. This book is an awesome collection of work from various different paleoartist who specialize in blending science and art in order to reconstruct these ancient animals and their lost world. Edited together very well by Steve White, this book included illustrations and artwork from top of the top contemportary paleoartists. This is a must for all fans of dinosaurs.

I will give a break down of the artists in this book.  Mauricio Anton, Raúl Martin and Robert Nicholls are all known best for through work which has been exhibited all around the world  and in museums worldwide. John Conway has worked on various projects for the Discovery Channel and the American Museum of Natural History.  Julius Csotonyi has also worked with numerous museum exhibits, as well as National Geographic. Douglas Henderson was actually in the film “Jurassic Park” as ‘Dinosaur Specialist’.  Gregory S. Paul has also worked with the  filmmakers of Jurassic Park and several other TV series. He also has renamed several dinosaurs from working in the field. Todd Marshall is best known for collaborating with paleontologist, Paul Serono.  Luis Rey is the illustrator of “Dinosaurs: The Most Complete, Up-to-Date Encyclopedia for Dinosaur Lovers of All Ages.” Lastly John Sibbick has been illustrating dinosaurs for 30 years.

“Dinosaur Art: The World’s Greatest Paleoart” is filled with some truly amazing artwork, some of which have never before seen.  The illustrations range from digital to black and white drawings.  We get a really broad range of different artwork, especially since it is from so many different artists.  The art is also not limited to limited to just dinosaurs, there are also many other prehistoric mammals included. Note: be sure to take a peek behind the dust jacket for an amazing image of two silver dinosaur skeletons. Overall this book is highly recommended and another gem from Titan Books.

Titan Books


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DVD Review “The Garfield Show: Dinosaur & Other Animal Adventures”

Voices of: Frank Welker, Gregg Berger, Wally Wingert
Episodes: 6
Running Time: 74 Minutes
Studio: Vivendi Entertainment

Our Score: 3.5 out of 5 stars

“The Garfield Show” started in France in 2008, following its US premiere in late 2009. The show is a different take for the series as it is fully CGI animated. I think that it works rather well in 15 minute episode formats. Each episode is quick and usually packs a good laugh or two. The animation is basic but not bad, with the colors really standing out. It definitely also has a pretty catchy theme song.

There are six episodes from this series included in this set including “Down on the Farm”, “The Pet Show”, “Bone Diggers”, “Underwater World”, “Fish to Fry” and “History of Dogs”. Some of the adventures that Garfield and Ottie deal with are digging up dinosaur bones, working on a farm, working on a farm, exploring the ocean and even attends a pet show.

My favorite on the disc is definitely “Underwater World”, since it has a cool shark named Chomper. I am a sucker for CGI sharks. Overall this show is fun and should definitely hold the interest of children…(and some adult like myself). There are over 100 episodes of this show and they seem to be releasing a new volume many times throughout the year. So keep an eye out for more volumes coming fast.