This movie received very little marketing support and thus flew under most peoples’ radar when it was released. It’s considered a flop by Pixar standards. How sad. Visually, this film took computer generated imagery to a whole new level. The environments looked more believable than the live-action landscapes used in Disney’s Dinosaur film from 2000. This film had very little dialogue, but was able to communicate its story well.
Make Your Mark – Arlo’s family is hard working. The ultimate goal for family members is to “make their mark”, here defined visually as putting one’s footprint onto a grain silo. Arlo’s dad tells him that he can’t make his mark until he’s done something to help someone other than himself. Arlo sees it as a way of proving his own worth to the family, and fears he’ll never be up to the task.
For a long time I’ve desired to “do something great”, to prove myself worthy. Lately I’ve realized two things about that: 1. I’ll never be worthy, and that’s ok because Jesus died for me. He is worthy. 2. I should stop seeking to do something great for God and instead seek God Himself. It is enough to just know Him.
Arlo made his mark in at least two ways, 1. By being there for his friends. 2. By being there for his family. Jesus told us to love one another, even if it meant to put our life on the line. Then He went and did that Himself. The way we make our mark is by doing things that last for Eternity. Very few things can last forever, but telling others about Jesus does. So I’m going to equate “helping someone other than yourself” to “telling others the Good News of Jesus.” If we or our kids are going to make our marks, we’re going to have to put away fear, stop trying to prove ourselves worthy, seek God first, and tell others about Jesus.
There’s a lot more in the film but I’m not going to get into it. It would be great to hear what you and your kids saw in this film. Please leave a comment about it.
- At the beginning of the movie, Arlo had trouble making his mark because he was small and afraid. Have you ever felt like you were too small or afraid to do something important?
- How did Arlo (you might want to say “The Good Dinosaur” – some kids didn’t catch his name the few times it was said in the film) make his mark?
- God knows we are small, but He still tells us to not be afraid. Why shouldn’t we fear? (Because He promised to be with us and give us all the strength we need to do good.) (Isaiah 41:10)
- What’s the two best things we could ever do? (Know God and help other people to know Him.) (Jeremiah 9:23-24, John 17:3, Matthew 28:19-20)