Dan's four year old son is nuts for Disney's Cars. When we heard about Planes, we thought it would be great for his first movie theater experience. It seemed like a natural fit and he was already playing with the official Planes merchandise prior to the release of the film.
A week ago, Dan's father treated us to a screening of Planes at the Vue Cinema in Newbury. Thank You Dave! Dan's son and his six year old daughter were excited for the film. Heck, I was excited. I love most anything Disney makes. In a movie going first, we had the entire theater to ourselves. Cool.
Sadly, Planes is not Disney's finest film effort. It feels much more like a Disney "Direct to DVD" sequel offering. It felt like an after-thought.
Additionally, Planes gets slammed because of it's striking similarity and inferiority to another summer animation release, Turbo. Both are movies about an underdog with a dream, who manages to enter into a race in which they are highly unlikely to win, but are supported in their efforts by a group of quirky friends. Turbo released first and was a really good movie. It had endearing characters and a cleaver plot.
Planes, about a crop-duster named Dusty CropHopper, who enters a globe spanning arial race, has a predictable plot and forgettable characters. It's entirely unoriginal. The only upside, is that the characters look really good. Just like in Cars , the physicality of the Planes visually looks great. They had such expressive faces.
Admittedly, I found myself struggling to stay awake. Dan's son, so excited to see Planes, was curled up fast asleep at the end of the movie. He even stopped playing with his Planes toys for awhile.
I hope that Disney doesn't get the idea to make Trains.