Title: Pete’s Dragon
MPAA Rating: PG
Director: David Lowery
Starring: Bryce Dallas Howard, Robert Redford, Oakes Fegley
Runtime: 1 hr 43 mins
What It Is: When he was a toddler Pete (Fegley) got lost in the woods following a horrific car accident that slew his parents. In his wandering, he stumbles upon a dragon! One he names Elliot. Elliot is Pete’s one and only friend in this forest they live in. When he is discovered by Grace (Howard) who’s a park ranger. When Grace sees Pete drawing photos of a dragon she asks him about this. When she’s told that that is a friend of Pete’s Grace’s father Meacham (Redford) a former ranger himself swears that that is the dragon which he always speaks about in his tall tales. A trip to the forest may lead to finding out just what’s going on in the forest.
What We Think: I had low expectations of this and though it hit them, and I’d say surpassed them this was by no means that entertaining a picture. Somewhere along the way, I started nodding off because it was really boring. Not just content wise but the pacing was way off. I think its Lowery’s direction that throws all the timing off. I’m not so much disappointed as I am simply underwhelmed by all of it.
Our Grade: C-, Stilted acting belayed by robotic direction leave an artificial feeling within the film itself. Overall the kid playing Pete does a solid job, actually all the kids do. That alone is a real surprise. I love Karl Urban but here he’s just kind of an a-hole. His motivation rather weak. I recommend the film for those who are fans of the 70’s original, or perhaps families needing to have a nice family night with something rather harmless.