The Land Before Time

1988 • 68 minutes
4.6
800 reviews
64%
Tomatometer
G
Rating
Eligible
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About this movie

From Steven Spielberg and George Lucas comes the animated classic that started a global phenomenon. Go back in time with Littlefoot, Cera, Spike, Ducky and Petrie – a group of very different young dinosaurs who find themselves thrown together when the world around them quickly changes. With one common dream of making it to the lush, legendary Great Valley, they quickly learn that they’ll need to overcome differences and trust each other in order to survive. Fun, heartfelt and full of unforgettable characters, it’s an adventure the whole family will love to watch again and again. (Original Title - The Land Before Time) - 1988 Universal Studios. All Rights Reserved.
4.6
800 reviews
Kyle Vansteelandt
March 5, 2021
The Land before time is the first ever animated film for all ages that features the most legendary creatures that roamed the earth: Dinosaurs. Not only that this is a cute little animated treat for all children, it is an emotional charmer for all ages great and small and it does not talk down to it's audience. The themes of this film focuses on friendship, loss, and courage that will inspire kids and treats them like they are smart, mature, strong, and sophisticated. The major aspect that develops a poignant charm in this film is that the story focuses on a group of youngsters going through different obstacles, conquering fear, and visually deliver strong messages about teamwork, selflessness, interspecies tolerance, resourcefulness, and endurance. What makes this movie so old-fashioned is the dialogue; the writers are very careful not to write lines that are not totally modern and counterfeit, the writers did a fantastic job avoiding words that have not been invented yet for the Shakspearian future and making it literal. That is how a movie about talking prehistoric animals has been done right. What makes this film is engaging is the wonderful animation; It has an effective sense of drama with the colors and creature designs. The moody colors can go from pleasantly cute and cheerful to gloomy and ominous. The character designs are smartly drawn; the protagonists look cute and good-natured, while the antagonists look menacing and grim, especially the main antagonist named "Sharptooth", but the characters are expressive and the animators did a splendid job being able to sustain the cuteness of the protagonists and the scariness of the antagonists. Even the imagery is memorable with an astounding work of animated art. Not only that the characters are cute and charming, they are also rounded, fleshed out, and have different personalities to provide a dynamic mood for the film; Littlefoot (Gabriel Damon) is a young apatosaurus that is willing to remember the directions that his deceased mother said, he also uses strategy to come up with bright ideas and make clever plans. But he can sometime be wrong about something which adds more layers to this protagonist. Cera (Candace Hutson) is a cheeky cynical triceratops that thinks she is an independent brute that doesn't need any help, well sometimes she's not so independent, she does need help, and she can be there for her new friends when she makes the right decision. Ducky (Judith Barsi) is a happy-go-lucky and excitable parasaurolophus who loves company a lot. Petrie (Will Ryan) is a cowardly and comical Pteranodon who couldn't fly yet, but can still climb. Spike is a non-speaking stegosaurus who loves to eat but can also help by using his size and strength. Littlefoot's mother is voiced by Helen Shaver; the sound of her voice is delivers a quiet yet powerful quality that is comforting and engaging. Pat Hingle is the narrator of the film and he voices old Rooter the Scolosaurus. Pat Hingle's voice is just as comforting and engaging as the voice performance of Helen Shaver, but also a lot more old-fashioned. The main antagonist is Sharptooth the notorious Tyrannosaurus and he is a seriously terrifying threat to all dinosaurs, especially to Littlefoot and his friends. Sharptooth is not a normal predator that kills to eat for hunger, he is a rogue Tyrannosaurus that kills for gruesome vengeance and pleasure. The score by James Horner and performed by the London symphony orchestra is an emotionally dramatic orchestral score that elevates the emotion while it reflects the scenes and characters. My only problem with this movie is that even though this is a fantasy movie, these dinosaurs here did not coexist and they didn't live at the same time. But in spite of that, I couldn't help noticing how likable and uplifting it is. In conclusion: the land before time is an enchanting and dynamic cartoon for all ages 6 to 96 (if not perfect because of the fact that all dinosaurs don't live at the same time).
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Kylie Anderson
December 15, 2017
Loved this as a kid, very cute family movie. It might be a bit annoying to adults though; I can't remember, it's been awhile since I seen. Worth a rental. On a side note: finding out that the kid who did the voice of littlefoot (who was my favorite character) was the same kid who played the foul-mouthed villain on RoboCop 2; kinda ruined my childhood :(
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kacie W
March 5, 2021
I grew up watching it and to be nice, 5 star (yay) I LOVED land before time and I still do, its a lil edgicational and got me to stop fearing (for some reason) dinosaurs *Chef kiss* delightful My mom got my teacher to play land before time in pre-k... Lovely My favorite characters are sara and big foot ☺️👌mk I'm dun
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