As a little kid, I loved school. Loved it. But if there was one thing that meant more to the seven-year old version of myself than learning stuff with my friends, it was dinosaurs. I was completely fascinated by them.
|I still want to punch both of them.|
One morning, prior to heading off to school, I heard something on television that was about to change my life. Up next it was said, two dinosaurs were going to be born - live!- on T.V. Amazing, right? The thing is, it was time to go. Everybody in the car! As quickly as I could, I faked impending death. The whole I don't feel good/my stomach hurts routine made its debut. My mom, either on to me, or believing there is no way I would miss school, said, miraculously, I should stay home, and dashed out the door with my older brothers. Not a minute later, the dinosaur eggs filled the television frame and my eyes widened. The eggs began to crack, as my heart began to fail. Out came Rex and Rita Readasaurus, those two God-awful puppets pictured to the right. They wanted Kids to Read! Ah, the personal irony.
Oh, you're not interested in pointless, rambling stories, loosely related to dinosaurs? Well then stay the Hell away from Walking with Dinosaurs, which is arguably one of the worst movies I have ever seen. It's so bad, so soul-crushingly miserable, it actually moved the Rex and Rita incident down a peg, to become the second worst dinosaur related tragedy in my life. [Oh, and for the record, that scene in The Lost World with the parallel bars ranks a solid third ]
Anyway, what looked like a possibly educational/visually breathtaking experience for me and my son to catch on the big screen turned out to be the longest 87 minutes of my life. It was so bad, for the first time ever, I almost asked for my money back at the movies, as if it's the theater's fault that I'm a f--king idiot and paid to go see this.
Specifically what's wrong with this movie, is either a really long list or a short one (that list reads: everything). I'll meet you in the middle and narrow it to the three largest offenders.
First, and most obvious, there is no story. None. Seriously, nothing happens. This flick is about the migratory habits of the pachyrhinosaurus. I'm not shitting you. They walk somewhere. They get there. Then, shockingly, they walk back. It doesn't end. They just keep doing it.
Next, and most pressing, is the dialogue (both how it's written and delivered). I'm a dad, so I've seen my share of awful kids movies with atrocious scripts phoned in by D-list celebrities, but this film is the absolute bottom of the barrel. Justin Long deserves to have his larynx devoured by a velociraptor for this one. His incessant whining and general douchery actually made me long for his work as Alvin in the shittastic Chipmunk movies. I dare you to find a more annoying character than Patchi.
Finally, the concept. Who decided to take a beautifully made educational film and pair it with an awful script full of modern slang? This would have been a very cool TV special that kids could have enjoyed with their families, instead of its current state of theatrical trainwreck. Add a cheeky narrator, subtract thirty minutes and we would've been good.
Far from good, are the Yays and Boos. Taking my son to a movie is always a Yay, but the fact that I got stuck with this one after my wife took him to Frozen? I don't even need to say it.
|The Aurora Borealis? At this time of year? At this time of day?|
- It looks gorgeous. I bet the 3D was pretty solid. I will never confirm that.
- This is probably a Boo, but I had a nice time snickering at the line, she likes me, and she likes my hole.
- There was a lone educational segment that was easily the best part of the film. Well, that and the end credits, of course.
- And finally, even though my son seemed much more focused on the post-film trip to Gamestop at the time, I can't help but secretly love that he looks back on the movie so fondly. That was a really good movie, Dad! I really liked it! Ah, kids.
- The dinosaurs talk. It looks photorealistic, but the f--king dinosaurs speak.
- But their mouths don't move. Which is terrible.
- But worse? What they say. Or think. Or whatever. We get dinosaurs talking about ninjas, which seems entirely unreasonable. We also get dinosaurs using the phrase you got served which seems like the handiwork of the Devil himself.
- Speaking of irrational demons, my mom actually came with us and was (rightfully) pissed at how awful this movie was. Of her countless verbal explosions, my favorite was This is why I don't go to movies.
- Oh, and while we're discussing unwelcome audience participation, let me Boo the kid sitting behind us. Has this kid ever left the house? Upon seeing the Daddy dinosaur possibly die (it was a bit vague, I suppose), this kid let loose a stream of The dad died? The dad died? Did the dad die? He's dead, isn't he? that appeared to have no end. I wanted to turn around and say that his Dad was going to die if he didn't shut the Hell up but that possibly could have been seen as bad form. Possibly.
- When the two young dinosaurs meet, they actually play Barry White. Yes. That happens. In a movie about migrating dinosaurs.
- Karl Urban is in this. Yay! For three minutes. Boo.
- And finally, let me reiterate, this is the longest 87 minute flick ever. Even though I obviously hated the voice acting, a little variety might have helped. Only four of the dinosaurs talk. Four. And one of them is Justin Long. Always. During one of Long's rants my son turned to me and whispered, this is a long movie. Indeed.
I actually heard that Jeff Goldblum, wearing all black, saw this movie with his family. Apparently, he didn't really like it either. Upon leaving the theater, someone overheard him saying, That is one big pile of shit.
Hey, you made it to the end. Good for you. In fact, you should be proud of how much you've just read. Reading is really good for you. At least, that's what those jerks Rex and Rita told me.