The Good Dinosaur
Run Time: 93 minutes
Director: Peter Sohn
This film includes important themes such as dealing with fear and loss. In addition, the film addresses stereotypes about the body.
An unlikely pair, a dinosaur (Arlo) and a human (Spot), become friends as Arlo tries to find his way back home.
- Demeaning language-“crazy critter,” “coward,” “killer,” “beast,” “murder,” “lunatic,” “lying sons of crawdads,” “stinky face”
- Threating language- “you’re dead critter,” “I’m gonna squeeze the life out of you,” “If you’re pulling my leg, I’m gonna eat yours,” “Shut your mouth,” “I’m gonna love ending you”
- Slapstick humor
- Main character death
- Minor character deaths
- Intense animal fighting; no gore
- Choking, drowning
- Character eats a large bug by tearing its head off with his teeth; also eats many animals throughout film
- One character recounts a story in which he drowned an animal that was attacking him in his own blood
Sex: 0 poos
- Urination sounds
Drugs and Alcohol:
- Characters accidentaly become intoxicated and hallucinate after eating fermented fruit
- Arlo’s family challenges traditional stereotypes regarding masculinity and femininity. For example, both the masculine and feminine coded dinosaurs are expected to actively work on the family’s farm and each member is depicted as valuable to the family. This is important because oftentimes women or feminine coded characters in media are depicted as passive and as less significant than men or masculine coded characters.
- Arlo challenges traditional stereotypes regarding masculinity as he regularly expresses emotions. For example, Arlo misses his dad, cries with his male friend, and tells his male friend that he loves him.
Sexual Orientation: N/A
- The family of T-rexes, who have large teeth, claws, and scars, are depicted as “good” and help Arlo. This is significant because aberrant appearances are often associated with immorality in the media.
- Arlo, who is small-bodied compared to his siblings, is depicted as active and capable by the end of the film. For example, although Arlo is not the typical hypermasculine hero character found in many films, he helps others and sacrifices his own life to save his friend. Therefore, Arlo suggests that all types of bodies, including bodies that are labeled or depicted as “weak,” are capable of great things.
- The majority of the characters appear to be heterosexual.
- Many of the characters with grotesque bodies, such as the team of Pterodactyls with their pointy features and yellow and red eyes, are depicted as evil. This is significant because characters with aberrant bodies are often immoral in popular media narratives.
- One character with a visible vision impairment is depicted as eccentric, as he collects “pets” and adorns his body with them. This is problematic because characters with aberrant bodies are often depicted as strange or even supernatural in popular media narratives.
Suggested talking points
- It is important to note that the film is historically/scientifically inaccurate. In order to have humans and dinosaurs both inhabit the earth at the same time, the asteroid that killed the dinosaurs 65 million years ago is shown at the beginning of the film narrowly missing earth.
- A main theme throughout the film concerns fear. Arlo, who was fearful since he hatched from his egg, thought that fear was something he had to overcome to become a “real” dinosaur and make his mark. However, the film suggests that it is normal to be afraid and that fear is only a problem if it stops you from living life.
- A theme in the film concerns dealing with the loss of a loved one. Arlo witnesses his father’s drowning early in the film and deals with the guilt and pain associated with the incident throughout the narrative.
- The importance of family and friendship are also important aspects in the film. Even though Arlo and Spot are very different from one another, they help each other throughout the film and build a close friendship. However, it is important to note that the film suggests that family takes precedent over friendship as each return to a family by the end of the film, and Arlo and Spot are forced to part ways.
Keywords: Dinosaur, the good dinosaur, family, animated, disney, two paws, 2 paws, movie review,