What story? For all the technological breakthroughs, the plot is pure Disney formula (wisecracking comic relief, obligatory romance) set in
the Cretaceous period. Visually captivating but thin in plot, "Dinosaur"
tells the tale of a spunky Iguanadon (voiced by D.B. Sweeney) who joins
a quirky band of dinos on a quest for self-discovery and a new land.
The competent voice cast includes Samuel E. Wright (Sebastian the Crab
from "The Little Mermaid") as the crusty dinosaur leader and Julianna
Margulies (TV's "ER") as the lizard that steals our hero's heart. But
the real credit belongs to the animators who obviously went to great
lengths to create expressive faces on our dino friends. It's a shame
that Disney, who refrained from the routine singsongs and cheesy
ballads, couldn't have exercised more restraint and kept these dinosaurs
silent. It would've been far more thrilling to see these beasts interact
as they may have done millions of years ago, rather than spouting
forgettable quips. James Newton Howard's score provides all the audio
It took five years to create this film, and it shows. Directors Ralph
Zondag and Eric Leighton (supervising animator on "A Nightmare Before
Christmas") deserve high praise for their innovative blend of filmed
settings and CGI wizardry.
Last year's "Toy Story 2" was a party for the peepers, but "Dinosaur"
sets a new standard in the "How'd they do that?" department. Parents
take note: The film's violent dino battles are scarier than the dino
Happy Meal you bought to get the dino toys.
What are the odds that moviegoers will stay away from anything that has
a Disney logo on it?