I received a very special DVD in the mail called The Land Before Time: Journey of the Brave, which is available today only at Walmart. Since I am a sucker for Dinosaur movies and the Land Before Time was one of my favorites when I was a kid, I had my family sit down with me and watch Littlefoot, Cera, Petrie, Ducky, Spike and friends (including Chomper) go on an epic journey.
I should say, that I expected this movie to be so-so. It is a movie for the little kids consisting of talking dinosaurs and life lessons. But parents, let me tell you, if you are not laughing in a few parts, it is time to search for your funny bone. Reba MacEntire really brings in the humor; my family was literally on the floor laughing. We had to pause the movie when Etta the Pteranodon (Reba’s Character) started giving advice because we were laughing so hard we couldn’t hear the movie. For example:
Just when things get darkest, that’s when you look for the light. Unless, of course, it’s too dark to find it.
Leave it to Reba to be both enlightening and depressing. Watch the movie for more of her hilarious quotes and listen to “Look for the Light” sung by Reba MacEntire.
It is a good thing Reba spices the movie up with some humor, because the start of Journey of the Brave is a little dull. It’s basically a summary of what happened in the past movies so that the audience can understand the Journey of the Brave. The narration is both a good move and a bad move. Honestly, I have a hard time remembering what happened in The Land Before Time 5 through 13, so the narration was helpful. But the narration is long winded and did make one person in my family a little fidgety. Long story short, Littlefoot finds his dad who is the leader of a migrating herd. His dad passes through the Great Valley once a year in his migration path where he gets to see Littlefoot for about two weeks before he continues his long journey. This is the time Littlefoot really looks forward too. Cut, print and moving on, you’re now ready to watch Journey of the Brave.
The story opens with new life and the excitement of Littlefoot’s dad arriving in the Great Valley. But when Littlefoot finds out that his father rescued the herd form the fire mountain and is now in danger himself, Littlefoot leaves The Great Valley on a journey to save his father. Cera, Petrie, Ducky and Spike join him on this dangerous crusade.
I am impressed that each character has the same personalities I remember from the original Land Before Time. Littlefoot is still the smart one, Cera is the feisty one, Spike is the hungry one, Petrie is the scared one and Ducky is the curious one. There were a few nostalgic moments as I watched the five dinosaurs interact…good times. While their personalities are still as epic as ever, it was refreshing to see new dynamics in their character development. For example, in this movie, Littlefoot is actually the one that doesn’t listen to his friends and gets angry enough to leave them. His fear of losing his dad makes him momentarily forget that he needs his friends just as much as they need him. This is where the life lessons start pouring in.
Before I make a list of some of these life lessons, I should make it clear that we are ignoring the beginning. I am pretty sure that “leaving home without telling someone to go help your father from a burning lake of Lava” is not a life lesson. In fact, I will go as far as to say, “Kids, don’t try this at home.” If we skip the beginning, there are actually some great life lessons made within the film that are great for all kids, and even some adults. Such as:
- Nobody should go it alone
- look for the light – if it’s not too dark to find it
- never give up
- Help family and friends
- Learn to Listen to others – this one is hard for not only kids but adults as well
These are just a few of the lessons that the audience can learn. I am sure there are plenty more within the movie. Challenge: See how many you can find.
Lessons aside, we really watch these movies for the Dinosaurs because Dinosaurs are cool. In Journey of the Brave we meet the Yutyrannus or the feather-head sharp tooth. With short arms like a Tyrannosaurus Rex, this feathery beast is just as terrifying. Actually, before watching this movie, I had no idea a Yutyrannus even existed…Score one for learning! And here is a fun fact, the Yutyrannus is “currently the largest known dinosaur specimen that preserve direct evidence of feathers” (wikipedia). Sneak that into the conversation while watching the movie and BAM, your kid is learning!
So to sum it all up, we have Life Lessons, Dinosaurs and Reba MacEntire all in one epic animated movie. It is fun for the whole family and a great edition to the Land Before Time Series. So I give it a 4 of 5 stars. It would have been 5 of 5 but that beginning was just too long. Do I recommend this movie….YES! All dinosaur loving, adventure seeking, looking for a laugh audience members will love this movie. At least, we all did in my family.
If you wish to own it, you can find The Land Before Time: journey of the Brave only at Walmart.
Be sure to grab the free Journey of the Brave printables featuring Chomper, Littlefoot, Cera, Ducky, Petrie and Spike by clicking the image below.
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