(Chris Stuckmann Movie Reviews intro plays)
Chris Stuckmann: Pete's Dragon is Disney's newest live-action attempt to remake one of their previous properties. Recently, Cinderella and especially The Jungle Book were very good, and I think pretty much universally loved by fans.
(A poster of the original film is shown, before showing footage from this movie)
Chris (vo): So I was excited to see if that success could carry over to one of their more lesser-known stories. In this film, we have a boy who loses a family tragically at a very young age, and is adopted, sort of, by a dragon in the forest which he names Elliott.
Chris: And he spends the next six years of his life being raised by that dragon in the forest. But when he gets a little bit older and is eventually discovered by Bryce Dallas Howard, who plays a park ranger in this movie, that's where things get a little bit dramatic and a little bit Disney-fied. Pete's Dragon is, in my opinion, a pretty good movie. It's not great. It is getting really good reviews, but I would say that it just really isn't as good as I wanted it to be.
(More footage of the movie is shown)
Chris (vo): Although, I did like it. This is, by no means, a boring film. This is, by no means, a poorly-acted movie, and it's very beautiful to look at. The dragon itself is a wonder of a creation through CGI. It's not quite as impressive or realistic as...
Chris: ...The Jungle Book animals earlier this year, which were almost photo-realistic and truly mind-blowing. But the CG here does work really well. And the dragon itself is just adorable. I can't imagine someone watching this movie and not being like, "I would like to fly in the sky with you, because you are just a beautiful thing." The lead boy in this film, Pete, just wasn't quite as compelling of a hero as I wanted him to be. I think the film struggles to have one real protagonist, because you have Robert Redford in this movie, talking about having seen this dragon at one point in time, and that's how the movie begins with his narration. And then you have Bryce Dallas Howard, who finds him. And this movie's called Pete's Dragon, so you're assuming that he's the main character. But the movie kind of goes back and forth between who to follow.
(More footage of the movie is shown)
Chris (vo): You also have Karl Urban in this film, who plays someone who feels the dragon's out there and wants to hunt it down. And so, you have all these characters, and most of the time...
Chris: ...they're fleshed out fairly well. I'm just saying the movie has a tough time really identifying with one of them. The young boy playing Pete is fine. There's nothing wrong with his performance. It's just that he was nowhere near as compelling as, say, Mowgli in The Jungle Book. He's just...there wasn't that much about him beyond the sadness of what happened to his family, because once he got separated from the dragon, for me, the movie slowed down for a little bit, and it takes a while for it to pick back up. But I still really enjoyed this film as pure family entertainment. I think a lot of kids will really enjoy it. But it's just not quite as compelling or exciting as I was expecting it to be. It is a very good-looking movie and very well-acted, with a very good musical score, and overall...
(An image of Elliott the dragon flying towards the sun is shown)
Chris (vo): ...I really think families are going to have a good time with Pete's Dragon, and I'm going to give it a B-.
Chris: Guys, thank you so much as always for watching. I still have one video coming over this weekend, that of Blood Father. I'm gonna review that very soon. You guys are the best once again. Thank you once again, and if you like this, you can click right here and get Stuckmannized.