Pete's Dragon Review
Director: David Lowery.
David Lowery who has an impressive catalog of shorts and a couple of main features under his belt takes on a reboot of the '77 Disney live animation hybrid of the same name Pete's Dragon, however Lowery likes to put it out as a reinvention as oppose to a remake. The core story is there but with some changes, making Pete a lost child instead of the original orphan on the run. It's actually a welcomed change making the back story more relatable.
Pete, played by an awesome Oakes Fegley becomes lost in the forest after a tragic accident and is quite literally taken under the wing of a green, furry dragon that he names Elliot that's more doglike than dragon with a face of Seth Rogan. Elliot the dragon reminded me a little of Gorbash from Flight of Dragons and Falkor, the Luck Dragon from the NeverEnding Story, however Elliot lacks speech making him a more fun dragon playing both pet and guardian to Peter; similar to the relationship Bumblebee and Sam share in Transformers.
Ron Howard's daughter, Bryce Dallas Howard goes from fighting dinosaurs to chasing dragon tales, one of which is spun by her father, played by Robert Redford. Great to see Oona Laurence (Southpaw) again who also befriends Pete whilst he tries to come to terms with the human way of life. Karl Urban does good as the wannabe town hero wanting to catch Elliot and make his fame and fortune which creates conflict by also being Bryce's brother-in-law.
The CGI is spot on as expected from a Disney movie and Lowery does a great job of capturing the emotion and keeping a good pace. There's a constant tension throughout the film until the very end which is both pleasing and heart-warming. Daniel Hart does an impressive score also being his first Disney film after a list of smaller movies, he's certainly one to keep an ear out for.
Overall the film is of typical Disney calibre and makes you want to believe, being dreamy and enchanting. Its shares that same emotional value from Bigfoot and the Hendersons, it's touching and heartfelt, probably inspiring children to want giant, green furry dragons in their back gardens.
Running Time: 8
The Cast: 8
Job Description: 8
The Extra Bonus Point: 5 for great storytelling and a great reinvention.