Movie Review: Pete’s Dragon

Kathleen Kenney, A&E Writer


“An imaginary animal that can breathe out fire and looks like a very large lizard with wings, a long tail, and large claws.” This is the definition of the term dragon in the Merriam-Webster Dictionary. What if dragons were not imaginary? What if one could touch and see a dragon? What if one had the ability to love and become best friends with a dragon? This is what happens in the movie Pete’s Dragon. An imaginary beast comes to life, creating a wonderfully magical story.

Pete’s Dragon is the story of a young boy named Pete, played by Oakes Fegley. A young, orphaned Pete ventures into the woods. He is quickly found by a pack of wolves intent on eating him, but is saved by a dragon. He names the dragon Elliot, the two form a tight bond, and Elliot protects the young boy.

Fast-forward six years. Pete is found by a park ranger named Grace, played by Bryce Dallas Howard. At first, Grace does not believe Pete when he tells her about Elliot. However, Grace’s grandfather, portrayed by Robert Redford, had often told stories of finding a dragon in the woods, and so she hesitantly believes Pete. Thus follows a harrowing story of locals trying to catch the legendary dragon, while Pete and a few of his new friends desperately try to get Elliot to safety.

Pete’s Dragon was released on August 12, 2016 by the Walt Disney Company. It is loosely based on the 1977 Walt Disney film of the same name. Both films are live action, however the 1977 version had an animated Elliot. This PG movie has, of September 18, amassed a total of $113,005,525 in profit. It was written and directed by David Lowery. Toby Hallbrooks also assisted in the writing of the screenplay.

I rather liked Pete’s Dragon. I admit, I have never seen the original, but I found the story very entertaining. The scenery in the movie was very beautiful and the dragon was magnificent. However, the acting occasionally left something to be desired. They often overplayed their emotions, which made me doubt their validity. Despite this, it was the perfect feel good movie. It made me feel like a kid again, desperately hoping that all the good guys would live happily ever after and that the evil men would be thwarted.

I would give Pete’s Dragon 4 out of 5 stars. It was a magical movie, one full of love and friendship. I would suggest this movie to people who enjoy movies like The Jungle Book or Tarzan. I would also suggest it to anyone and everyone who occasionally likes to watch children’s movies. Pete’s Dragon is a fantastic story of good versus evil. In addition to this legendary battle, a dragon comes to life on the screen. A dragon full of life and love. A majestic creature who bonds and takes care of a little boy. It is a perfect story that makes one feel like they are five years old again and anything is possible.