When Dinosaurs Ruled The Mind #31: The Land Before Time (Movie Review)

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Now, I’ve looked at the Land Before Time series two times already in the blog; in one I looked at the dinosaurs in the first movie, and in another I looked at all the sequels. But both times, I don’t think I fully expressed my thoughts and feelings of this movie. so, just like with Jurassic Park, I felt this film warranted my full attention, so I’ll be giving you my full review of the movie.

I can’t stress this enough, The Land Before Time was my childhood. Along with Jurassic Park (and a bucket full of old dinosaur toys my cousin gave me), this was the film that inspired my love of dinosaurs even to this day. I was obsessed with this film, and owned all the sequels all the way up to episode 10 (which kind of shows how young I really am). And this movie is still one of my favorite animated films of all time.

The movie was directed by 80’s animation extraordinaire Don Bluth, and executive produced by Steven Spielberg and George Lucas. And this film is covered with the fingerprints of all three of those men. They’ve collaborated before with the animated film An American Tail, another 80’s animation staple. Sadly, this would be Don Bluth’s last collaboration with these Hollywood giants, as he felt they put too much pressure on him to create a film that was more audience friendly, instead of the film that Don Bluth himself wanted to create. You see, there are many changes to the movie that Don had to compromise on. Don Bluth is well-known for adding a scary twist to a lot of his animated movies, but this movie had scenes in it that Steve and George felt were too scary. In total of 11 minutes of film footage was cut from the final product, all of which was cut for being too frightening.

But even with those cuts, this movie is still pretty freakin’ scary for a kids movie. Well, at least it gives you something that’s rationally scary: carnivorous dinosaurs. The last Don Bluth film gave me an irrational fear of cats.

Don’t you dare judge me.

Alright, let’s get into The Land Before Time.

To be honest, the beginning of this film is rather strange, yet amazing at the same time.

We follow a small amphibian creature through the water as bursts of bubbles fill up the screen as the credits go by. The music is beautifully haunting, and it gives an otherworldly vibe to the scene. We continue to follow this amphibian creature, along with other fish like animals and reptiles in the water. The music begins to swell, and as a group of sea turtles swims by the camera, we get our title. It all sounds pretty random writing it out, but the effect I think is very well done. I think it sets up the feel of the movie quite nicely, even if it has nothing to do with the rest of the movie (I heard the reason this opening feels so disconnected is because Bluth needed to put his animators to work, but the actual movie’s plot wasn’t finalized yet, leading to this sequence of animation. Even if that was the case, I still think it works for the movie’s favor). We then exit the water, and a narrator takes over. He says:

“Once upon this same earth, beneath the same sun, long before you, and the ape, and the elephant as well. Before the wolf, the bison, the whale. Before the mammoth, and the mastodon, in the time of the dinosaur.”

I really like that above line, as it sets up perfectly what kind of world this movie takes place in. It’s still our world, but it from so long ago that we can barely even recognize it. It gives the film both a familiar and alien tone.

We see a few dinosaurs, while the narrator continues to explain about them. He states that the dinosaurs were of two kinds: some ate plants, while the others ate meat.

You know, more or less.

The narrator continues to say that the leaves are starting to die off, and that all the dinosaurs are heading to a place called The Great Valley, a land rumored to still be lush and green.

We then cut to a scene of a few dinosaur babies hatching from their eggs, whom will eventually become main characters. A little hadrosaur hatches from her egg, and goes after a butterfly. She runs into other animals she messes with, including a mammal she randomly jumps on and a snapping turtle who wants to bite her head off.

Yes, this looks safe.

The mom saves her from being chomped, and reunites her with her brothers and sisters.

We then see a little Triceratops being hatched, whom will also later become an important character. The scene sets up her basic personality, showing her at first fearless and headstrong, but then being frightened by lightning and rain.

We then cut to another scene, where a lone Apatosaurus egg (in the film referred to as ‘long necks’) sits in a nest next to the broken remains of the other eggshells, whom had presumably died. Then, a Struthiomimus struts into the scene, doing what 1980’s ornithomimids do best.

Steal eggs.

I tries to take the egg, but to no avail. After a bit of a trip, the egg returns to its family, and begins to hatch. This is where we see our main protagonist, Littlefoot.

AWWWWW….

After he hatches, Littlefoot meets his mother for the first time. He scared at first, but then see’s that she’s there to protect him. His mother licks him affectionately, and he licks her back in the absolutely cutest way.

OMG SO CUTE!!!

A bunch of lizards. amphibians, pterosaurs, and other assorted prehistoric critters come to say hi to the little newborn. He’s scared at first, but the begins to accept them as well.

Littlefoot’s mother then put’s him on her back to sleep. The narrator says that all that remained of Littlefoot’s herd was his mother and grandparents, and that he knew they would be together always. He then falls fast asleep on his mothers back and oh crap…

The Land Before Time

I’m sorry, but this entire scene just gets me teary eyed. I don’t know what it is. Is it the music? The nostalgia? The fact that it’s absolutely cute and adorable? The fact that I know what’s coming up? WHY AM I CRYING!?

No joke, every time you see that ‘feels’ meme above, it’s an actual time I started crying while watching this movie. No joke, no exaggeration, actual tears running down my face. And I’m man enough to admit it.

SHUT UP!

The scene fades to black, and we then time jump to a point where Littlefoot is a little bit older. He asks if there is anything else to eat. His mom remarks that the land has been changing, which is why they’re walking to the Great Valley to begin with (you would think Littlefoot would already know this). Still, I’m sure Littlefoot is tired of chewing on sticks all day.

Mmmm, fiber.

Then, Littlefoot’s mother finds him something softer to chew on; a special kind of leaf called a Tree Star.

Littlefoot looks at it with awe, probably never seeing a plant quite like it before. He plays with it, but doesn’t eat it right away.

His mother tells him that the Great Valley is full of tree stars, fresh water, and many more of their own kind. Littlefoot asks how they will get there, and she responds that they must keep going towards where the bright circle touches the ground (or for human speak, the sun’s horizon). Littlefoot then asks if she’s ever been to the Great Valley, in which she responds no. He the questions how she really knows it’s there then. She answers: “Some things you see with your eyes, others you see with your heart.”

Mother, I think I might be questioning our faith.

Littlefoot says he doesn’t understand, but his mom reassures that he will soon enough. Littlefoot then decides it’s time to eat the tree star…

…while making this face for some reason…

…but then he hears something. He hears laughing, and goes to investigate. There he meets the little Triceratops (or ‘three horn’) from earlier. She’s basing her head into rocks and chasing bugs. Littlefoot finds this amusing, but the little three horn doesn’t like being laughed at. They begin to run after each other, having fun, only for the three horn’s dad to interfere.

He tells Littlefoot to scram, saying that three horns never play with long necks.

Littlefoot’s mom picks him up before any more trouble brews. Littlefoot asks what a long neck is, never hearing such labels before. His mother states that that’s what they are.

The more politically correct term, however. is ‘Sauropod’. ‘Long Neck’ is more of a label.

Littlefoot wanted to continue playing with the three horn, and asks why he couldn’t. His mother responds that none of the different species of dinosaur did anything together, basically because they were different (seems like Littlefoot’s mom is also a bigot). But Littlefoot need not worry, as there will be many of his kind to play with once they get to the Great Valley.

Littlefoot still can’t wait to get to the valley, so his mother reminds him how they get there: they must first find the rock that looks like a long neck and pass the mountains that burn (volcanoes). It will be a long journey, but she reassures they will get there.

That night, while everyone else is asleep, Littlefoot is awoken by a frog (or hopper, as they call it). While doing so, he then meets up again with the three horn who who find out is named Cera ( Get it? Triceratops?), whom is also chasing the ‘hopper’.

After a bit of time chasing the frog and splashing in the swamp, the two begin to have fun with each other. But the fun is short-lived, as an intruder begins to stalk towards them. And thus enters the scariest villain in animation history….

SHARPTOOTH!!!

Now, this guy is absolutely scary. And he is AWESOME!!! As a kid I didn’t know whether I was terrified of him or completely intrigued. He begins to stalk the kids, who are hiding in what looks like a giant thorn bush. The two try to escape, but Littlefoot is almost captured by the monster. Before Sharptooth can get him, Littlefoot accidentally knocks a thorn into the tyrannosaur’s face, blinding him in one eye. The monster continues chace, only to be confronted by Littlefoot’s mom. And what follows in an awesome fight scene.

The battle is incredible. It’s tense, action packed, and the animation is incredible. At some points it seems like the Sharptooth is getting the upper-hand, but then Littlefoot’s mother smacks him into the ground, and the three run off.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t end there, as the ground begins to shake and an earthquake hits.

To make matters worse, the Sharptooth returns.

He begins to chase the kids again, and he almost catches them, but then a huge plume of volcanic gas shoots out of the ground like a geyser, knocking the Sharptooth off his feet.

And yes, it’s just as awesome as it sounds.

The tyrannosaur begins to fall into the abyss, taking Littlefoot and Cera right along with it. Just before the two are about to fall into the monster’s jaws, Littlefoot’s mother saves them, and Sharptooth goes careening down to bottomless pit.

 Cera tries to run back to her father, and gives out an absolutely eerie cry for help. Her father hears it, and screams out an equally eerie roar, fearing the loss of his child.

Chills, man.

After that, everything hits the fan. The ground begins to crack, dinosaurs scramble to safety (and many of them die), and herds get separated. Cera tries to return to her herd, but a massive chasm blocks her way. Cera’s herd and Littlefoot’s grandparents are left on the other side of the divide, while Cera, Littlefoot, and his mother are left behind on the opposite side. The scene is powerful, intense, and oh dang it! 

It’s happening again. And this isn’t even the sad part!

Next, we see Littlefoot all alone in the rain, calling out to his mother. He finds her, but she is unable to get up. He coaxes her on, but she doesn’t have the strength.

She asks him if he remembers the way to the Great Valley. Littlefoot responds he does, but why should he know because she’s going to be with him. You can tell he’s in denial, but he fully understands what’s about to happen. His mother responds she’ll always be with him, even if he can’t see her. He tells him to let his heart guide him (it whispers, so listen closely). After a bit of silence, Littlefoot calls out to his mom again.

Mother?”

Mother…..?”

Crap.

Darn, I’m a mess.

OK, I’ve got a confession to make. This death scene get’s to me more than Mufasa.

Blasphemy!!!!

I don’t know why! Logically, I should be more choked up by Mufasa’s death. Mufasa is a better character than Littlefoot’s mom; Mufasa is the most awesome and wisest king/dad in the world, while Littlefoot’s mom is just generic nice (although, she did fight of that hungry T. rex, which was awesome). We also spend more time with Mufasa. So, why does this scene make me cry waterfalls while Mufasa’s death only makes me sniffle?

Well, I think it’s because Littlefoot’s mom get’s to talk to him for a bit before she dies, so he kind of has to see her pass before him before his eyes. She gives him one last piece of advice, and then drifts off, leaving Littlefoot by himself hanging. Don’t get me wrong, Mufasa’s death still gets me, it’s just Littlefoot’s mother’s death that leaves me bawling my eyes out.

Anyway, now Littlefoot is an orphan, and all alone. While wandering by himself, he runs into an old dinosaur of undetermined species named Rooter.

 At first he seems a bit annoyed by Littlefoot suddenly waking him up, but then realizes what happened to Littlefoot, and begins to soften up a little bit. He tells Littlefoot that his mother’s death wasn’t his fault, her fault, or anyone’s fault, and that it was all a part of the circle of life.

Nants ingonyama bagathi Baba…

Littlefoot says that he misses her so much, and Rooter tells him he’ll always miss her, but that she’ll always be with him if he remembers the things she taught him.

OK, last Lion King comparison. This movie is more like Bambi anyway.

This character/scene was added to lessen the effect of the traumatizing moment that happened before it, and to explain to the children in the audience what the heck just happened. Honestly, I can tell this was kind of tacked on, since the scene kind of just comes and goes (not to mention that Rooter just abandons Littlefoot), but I see why they needed it.

So, what happens right after an emotionally scarring road-trip like the last couple of scenes? Why some fun, happy, colorful imagery that’s what!

We get this completely random scene where a bunch of baby pterosaurs fight each other over a cherry. It’s cute, sugary, and slapsticky. And it completely comes out of nowhere. It’s so jarring that such a nauseatingly cute scene can come right after the heartache we’ve just went through. It kind of reminds me of…

Tralalala tweet tweet twittle tweet tweet twittle tweet tweet twittle tweet tralalala, tralala….

It’ not a rip off. It’s an homage.

Anyway, the little baby pterosaurs get their cherries, and it’s nice and sweet. But then i goes right back again into heartbreaking. One of the babies sees Littlefoot laying down, sad and depressed. The narrator says that Littlefoot could only think about his mother, and didn’t notice his hunger and completely forgot about the Great Valley. Trying to cheer him up, the little pterosaur offers his cherry to Littlefoot in the sweetest gesture imaginable. But it doesn’t work.

In the next scene, we see Littlefoot nudging against a footprint in the sand that is presumably his mother’s. Then his tree star, which he lost during the earthquake, somehow returns to him. Littlefoot looks upon it, and begins hearing his mother’s voice.

“Littlefoot, do you remember the way to the Great Valley?”

Um, Littlefoot? You sure that’s not one of these tree stars?

The voice of his mother reminds him of how to reach the Valley, and Littlefoot resumes his quest to get there. The whole set up of the scene seems very mystical, with the disembodied voice of Littlefoot’s mother talking and the tree star coincidentally landing right in front of Littlefoot IN A BEAM OF LIGHT!!! I mean seriously, what was that? Dinosaur Heaven?

However, all that was said in Littlefoot’s mother’s disembodied voice was things that Littlefoot already knew, so it could have been just a visual representation of Littlefoot having an epiphany. So I’ll leave it at that.

Then there is a scene where Littlefoot see’s a long neck’s shadow across a clip face, and thinks it’s his mother. He runs to it excited, only to find out the shadow was his own. He is left heartbroken, fully realizing that he is truly alone.

Littlefoot continues to wander, and runs into Cera again. He asks if she wants to join him on his journey to the valley, but she refuses (she’s acting pretty snotty for a kid who was saved by this guy’s mother). She tries to pass through the gorge the earthquake created that separated her from her family, but ends up at the bottom of the chasm. Littlefoot offers again, but she stubbornly walks off, saying along the way that three horns only talk and travel with other three horns. Littlefoot is once again heartbroken, and goes off.

It is at this point that we meet Ducky, the big mouth, or ‘swimmer’ (really a Saurolophus, and back when we thought hadrosaurs were water bound creatures).

Those were the days, AMR?

Ducky introduces herself to Littlefoot, but at first he seems uninterested, and even tells her that long necks don’t talk to other creatures (he’s probably given up to the point that he accepts Cera’s ideology). Ducky won’t give up, however, and tries to pass of as a long neck as well, to no avail. She then admits that she’s actually a ‘big mouth’, and that she lost her parents in the earthquake. Ducky’s charm hits the right notes (not to mention Littlefoot probably relates to her), and Littlefoot begins to warm up to her. He then finally invites her along to the journey.

We then get a cute little scene with Littlefoot and Ducky playing that ‘don’t step on the crack’ game we all used to play. Now, I’ll say this. I know some people really can’t stand Ducky as a character. They find her annoying beyond belief, and I think it my be because of scenes like this. One of the problems in this movie is that it has an abundance of cutesy scenes, and if you’re not into that some stretches of this film will be unbearable. These scenes often don’t even contribute to the plot, making the film often seem clunky and unorganized. that being said, I really like ducky. I like how optimistic she is, and how eager she is to make a friend. She can come off as a bit precocious at times, but for me it never gets too unbearable.

After that little game, Littlefoot begins to gnaw on a tree branch, when suddenly a little creature lands on his head, scaring him. It turns out to be a young Pteranodon, and our next main character, Petrie.

This is another character that many people find annoying. He does have a shrill voice, a speech impediment, and a quirk that makes him constantly replace ‘I’ with ‘me’. I can see why this can get on people’s nerves.  But like Ducky, I have no problem with Petrie. Maybe it’s nostalgia, but i think it’s because I related to him most in the movie when I was a kid (although at certain points I felt more like a Littlefoot). Oh well, at least there are people who like him. I can tell, because some of the fan art that draws him as an adult make him quite the specimen.

I guess he takes after his uncle? If that makes sense.

One of Petries other quirks is that he’s a ‘flyer’ that can’t fly. As you can probably guess, that’s embarrassing for him.

Meanwhile, we find Cera trying to traverse the caverns she has gotten herself into. While doing so, she runs into the Sharptooth from earlier that fell in. At first, she’s frightened.

And understandably so.

But then she realizes it’s dead, and begins to have a little fun with it.

She begins butting into it, and then decides to get a running start before she hits it again. But then the beast wakes up, with its eyes glowing in Cera’s face like the eye of Sauron.

Concealed within his fortress, the lord of Mordor sees all. His gaze pierces cloud, shadow, earth, and flesh. You know of what I speak, Gandalf: a great Eye, lidless, wreathed in flame.

So yeah, he’s not dead. Cera runs like heck.

Cera eventually finds her way back to Littlefoot and the group, and warns them about the Sharptooth. Littlefoot is insistent that the Sharptooth is dead, and they aren’t in any danger (Um, Littlefoot? Even if that sharptooth was dead, he can’t possibly be the only sharptooth around, right?). Cera responds by saying that her father told her that ‘flatheads’ had really small brains.

You can’t say that word! Only ‘we’ can say that word!

Cera then goes into her recollection of the events (all very much dramatized mind you). Caught up in the story, she accidentally stomps on a piece of wood and launches Ducky into the air.

 And somehow survives.

She lands near an egg, which hatches into the final addition to our group, Spike the Stegosaurus (or ‘spike tail’).

Back when Spike actually had ‘spikes’ on his tail.

Don’t see no spikes. do you? Geez, no wonder I used to think he was an Ankylosaurus.

Spike is a newborn baby, so he doesn’t talk at all. He’s basically here to look goofy, eat all the plants in sight, and add some extra muscle to the group (he is huge after all, and he just came out of the egg too). Of all the characters, Spike may be the one that annoys me the most, since he doesn’t really seem to add much to the narrative. He’s not bad though, and he does contribute a lot of the time, so he’s not dead weight.

So now, the friends continue their hunt for the Great Valley. The narrator comments that there has never been a herd quite like this one, with such vastly different species traveling together.

Hmm, an Apatosaurus, Triceratops, Saurolophus, Pteranodon, and Stegosaurus traveling together is weird, huh?

How about a mammoth, a sloth, and a sabre tooth cat together? Plus a couple of possums a bit later.

Eventually, the group finds a cluster of trees, and mistakes it for the Great Valley. However, out of nowhere, a bunch of sauropods appear and gobble up all the leaves of the trees.

Although they realize this can’t possibly be the Great Valley, they wait for the dinosaurs to leave and search to see if they left anything behind.

The do find a single tree that still had leaves on it, but they are out of reach. Littlefoot suggests that Petrie flies up there to get them, but he refuses. Ducky tells him not to feel bad, since many things cannot fly: rocks, trees, sticks…

Well, don’t rub it in.

 To remedy this situation, the group (except Cera) stacks themselves up and tries to use their collective height to reach the top. Petrie, being the acrophobic, is naturally on top. He throws down as many leaves as he can, all while trying not to look at the ground. Of course, Cera is getting a kick out of this. Eventually, there is enough leaves on the ground to feed them. However, Littlefoot falls, leaving Ducky and Petrie dangling from the tree. Ducky jumps into the leaves, but not before giving a big smooch on Petrie’s cheek.

The ship has sailed.

I hate the Internet.

Anyway, Petrie makes it to the ground by kind of ‘parachuting’ with his wings, floating softly onto the leaves. Littlefoot goes to get Cera and tell her they now have food, but she continues to be stubborn and insists on getting her own food. She tries ramming into a tree hoping some leaves will fall (and I’m pretty sure the tree is bare). Littlefoot, being the designated nice guy, throws some of his leaves on top of Cera, making her think her plan succeeded.

However, this nice gesture only boosts her ego. She is still determined to do things herself, and it’s REALLY at this point where you hope this character get’s a big fat heaping scoopful of karma  à la mode. However, she does seem to really care about her friends, because that night she joins them all in sleeping together. Or she could have just been trying to escape the cold, the selfish little-

Anyway, the next morning, the Sharptooth returns, debunking Littlefoot’s theory that it is deceased (but seriously Littlefoot, Sharptooth couldn’t have been the only predator around).

Anyway, the gang escapes the monster by entering a small cave, in which Sharptooth then gets his snout trapped in. When they get to the other side, they find the rock that looks like a Long Neck, one of the land marks to the Great Valley, meaning they’re going the right way.

The group continues going onward, but soon become exhausted. Littlefoot tries to urge them on, but their will continues to get weaker. Littlefoot believes the Great Valley might just be over a cliff face, but once they get there, all they see is rock.

This is the straw that breaks the camel’s back, and Cera announces she’s leaving to take an easier way. Littlefoot tells her that she’s going the wrong way. Cera asks who said so, and Litllefoot answers “my mother.” Cera says that she must have been a stupid long neck.

Understandably, this get’s Littlefoot pissed. They begin to fight, but sadly, Triceratops are better fighters.

Cera wins the spat, and she begins her journey elsewhere. The rest of the group joins Cera, leaving Littlefoot once again alone.

So Cera, can I see your ‘easier’ way?

So, Cera’s so-called ‘easier way’ get’s Petrie stuck in a tar pit and get’s Spike and Ducky trapped in a lava flow.

Cera, you’re so dumb.

Luckily, Littlefoot returns to save his friends just in time. However, when trying to get Petrie out of a tar pit, he accidentally gets himself trapped as well.

Meanwhile, Cera is getting chased by a bunch of Pachycephalosaurus.

So, Cera, how’s that ‘easier way’ coming along?

The dinosaurs almost kill her, but then a black blob of eldritch abomination comes by and scares them away. Cera is scared as well, but it just turns out to be the gang still covered in tar.

Embarrassed, Cera hides from them, and begins to cry to herself. The narrator says that she was too proud to admit that she went the wrong way.

This scene is actually pretty major, as Cera finally realizes the mistakes she has made, and has found out she isn’t as perfect as she thought she was. She put her friends and herself in danger, and now has to come to terms with it. It’s a pretty major turning point for the character.

Apparently, Cera leaves the group (the movie doesn’t really explain that part to well). Littlefoot and the group continues to head toward the Great Valley, but the Sharptooth returns once more.

How’d he get up there?

Littlefoot has had enough of this guy, and plans to get rid of him once and for all. His plan is to lure him into some deep water and drop a giant rock on his head and forcing him under the surface, drowning him.

Littlefoot concludes that the only component missing is some bait, and the entire group looks at Ducky, all thinking the same thing.

Wow, that’s…kind of mean. I mean, why her? Why was she the obvious choice? Does the entire group secretly hate her? And why would a Tyrannosaurus chase after something so small? It would be like us going after a grain of rice. It would be like a Tyrannosaurus chasing a mouse. it just doesn’t make sense.

Anyway, they convince her to do it, and she follows the Sharptooth into a cave.

She tries to get his attention, but because she is so infinitesimally tiny, he doesn’t pay her any attention and decides to leave her and the rest of her friends alone.

Oh, I’m sorry. I meant the opposite.

The Sharptooth is now in the water, right where they need him to be so they can push the rock onto him. Littlefoot and Spike try, but the boulder barely moves. Petrie then almost falls into the monster’s jaws, only for Sharptooth’s breath to rise him into the air.

Because of this extra push, Petrie is able to stay aloft, and finally learns how to fly.

However, Ducky is still in danger. With new found confidence, Petrie attacks the Sharptooth and lodges himself in it’s eye. Then the Sharptooth JUMPS ALL THE WAY TO THE TOP OF THE CLIFF!!!

Um. is that possible?

Suddenly, seemingly out of nowhere, Cera comes to help. Little exclaims that she came back (apparently she left), and she rams into the boulder, with the Sharptooth still on it. He topples off the cliff, and into the water, but not before grabbing Petrie and dragging him in with him.

The whole group is saddened by the loss of their friend, but no one more so than Ducky.

But then guess who comes crawling out of the water?

Silly audience, they would never kill the comic relief character.

Oh really?

Of course, no one is happier than Ducky.

Yay! The fan fiction may continue!

Meanwhile, Littlefoot’s hemp begins to take effect again as he get’s hallucinations of his mother in the clouds.

The ghost of Littlefoot’s mother leads him into a cavern, and on the other side, we finally meet our destination.

OMG, COLOR!!!

After all their tribulations, the gang finally makes it to the Great Valley, and everyone reunites with their families.

user posted image

This scene just gets to me. It’s so nice to finally see these characters happy, after all they’ve been through. They really do deserve it. In the end, they come together in a group hug, as the narrator proclaims that they”l live their lives here, with generation after generation telling of the story of how they came to the valley, long ago. It’s absolutely perfect. The music, the atmosphere, the narration, it’s all just so beautiful- oh crap..

Please, no more crying. I can’t take it anymore NO NOT THE SONG!!!!!

Yeah, re-watching this film just made me a blubbering mess. It’s probably the nostalgia talking though, since this was one of the biggest films of my childhood and the reason I’m even into dinosaurs in the first place. That being said, the film does have problems. The pacing is a little wonky, with some scenes going on too long or feeling disjointed from the entire plot altogether (I can chalk that up to the last minute edits this film went through that took 11 minutes out of the film however). And to some, the entire film may seem a bit too cutesy in some parts. Not to mention the fact that some dinosaurs are depicted accurately for the time, others look like they walked out of a Charles Knight painting, and others still looked like they were from an 80’s Saturday morning cartoon about dinosaurs.

Oh, I’ll rip you apart some other time.

Still, this movie has a lot to offer. The animation is incredible, and the visuals stand out even to this day (traditional animation never gets old). The atmosphere is incredible, with the music adding very much to it. The characters are fun and memorable, and all the actors give solid performances, even the child actors, who all do a very good job. The film certainly holds a special place in a lot of people’s hearts, and I can certainly see why. Apparently, Universal saw that as a marketing opportunity, and well…

…the rest is history.

Join me next time as I take another look at Jurassic World, and discuss the new website, the dinosaur’s scientific accuracy, some news/rumors, and why I think this movie is important.

Still awesome, but is it accurate?

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2 thoughts on “When Dinosaurs Ruled The Mind #31: The Land Before Time (Movie Review)

  1. I absolutely love this animated film, too. It makes up a major part of my childhood and it is the reason I am into dinosaurs. It never fails in bringing tears to my eyes every time I watch it. I am glad we have so much in common when it comes to this classic movie.

    Like

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