My kids and I were invited to attend an advanced screening of the film on Monday of last week. I admit, when I saw the previews for the movie last year I was excited. I knew it was something that my kids would love.
If you have been living under a rock, perhaps you haven’t heard of the movie so let me give you a brief synopsis:
Disney’s Planes takes place from above the world of Cars. It follows the story of a crop duster named, well, Dusty who has dreams of becoming a high-flying air racer and winning an around the globe race. Since he’s not exactly built for racing—and he’s afraid of heights, he turns to seasoned naval aviator, Skipper, who helps him qualify and then take on the defending champ of the race circuit.
So, does this storyline sound familiar?
If you have seen the 2006 hit Disney movie Cars, then it probably does. Sure, there are a few differences, but you can also find many similarities in the characters. Lightning McQueen is replaced with Dusty, Mater-esque qualities are found in Dusty’s friend Chug and Skipper is the fighter jet equal of Doc Hudson. Not to mention that the bad guy in the movie, Ripslinger not only bears the same color schemes as his Cars equivalent Chick Hicks, but the voice even sounds the same. (Although, Michael Keaton did not lend his voice to the Planes counterpart, Roger Craig Smith who is the voice of Ripslinger in planes, sounds just like him.)
Now, with all that, I want to say that I am not a movie critic. I love all things Disney and truth be told, a great kid movie to me is one that can hold my kids’ attention and that they want to see it again so that I can have a few hours of uninterrupted peace and quiet.
In this arena, Planes did not disappoint. My 8 year old son did mention that he thought it was a lot like Cars, but he still liked. (We love the movie Cars as a family and watch both at least once a month.) There were also certain scenes that had me chuckling at the dialogue, which let’s face it parents, if we can find even 2 parts of a kids movie that make us laugh it’s a win-win. And I always appreciate a movie that enforces the concept that with hard work and belief in yourself, all things are possible.
Bottom line, this wasn’t exactly a crash and burn. I think it was a safe landing and will offer Disney more opportunities to capitalize on the Cars franchise. Is it worth an expensive 3D ticket? Probably not, but if you are looking for a feel good movie that your kids will enjoy on a hot summer day, it’s worth getting in for the matinee price. You’ll enjoy a few hours of air conditioning and I guarantee El Chupacabra will make you giggle at least twice. 😉
Disclosure: Although we were invited to the screening no other compensation was received and I was not required to write this review. Thoughts and opinions are my own.