The 16th computer-animated theatrical release from the trailblazing whizzes at Pixar, "The Good Dinosaur" fits snugly in the middle of the pack, full of feeling but missing out on the unbounded imagination and consequence of the studio's most beloved films. The core conceit of the premise—what would have happened if the cataclysmic meteor that destroyed the dinosaur population 65 million years ago narrowly missed Earth?—is cleverer than its "The Incredible Journey"-esque story proper, while the screenplay by Meg LeFauve (2015's "Inside Out") wavers between inspired and pedestrian depending on the moment. This is a pleasant family adventure, to be sure, but it isn't particularly memorable.
Apotosaurus Arlo (voiced by Raymond Ochoa) always seems to be one step behind his bigger, stronger, braver siblings Buck (Ryan Teeple) and Libby (Maleah Nipay-Padilla). Working on his family's farm, he wants nothing more than to make his mark—a paw-print rite of passage his Momma (Frances McDormand) and Poppa (Jeffrey Wright) have created. When tragedy strikes and Arlo loses a loved one, he determines to step up and help the rest of his family in their time of need. Before he can fulfill this goal, he is swept away in the rapids and suddenly finds himself lost. Remembering what his father told him ("As long as you can find the river, you can find your way home"), Arlo and a mischievous orphaned caveboy named Spot (Jack Bright) embark on a long, perilous trek back to the ranch.
See Dustin Putman, TheFilmFile.com. for full review