Quick Overview (spoiler free):
Disney’s Planes is a 3D animated film created by the Disneytoon Studios, it opens in theaters Friday August 9th. You follow Dusty, voiced by Dane Cook, a crop duster from the heartland as he embarks on the adventure of a lifetime in an air race around the globe. He has to overcome internal challenges along the way including the fact that he is a crop duster and not a race plane as well as a fear of heights in addition to external ones from his fellow competitors.
Meet the Cast:
His fellow racers include:
My thoughts on the film:
Disney’s Planes is an entertaining trip back into the world of Cars. If you go into the film looking for a light hearted adventure and not a serious film you will not be disappointed, much in the same vein as Cars 2. The story arc is fairly predictable and the characters more or less fit into typical stereotypes.
Even though Planes shares a world with Cars, you will not see your favorite Cars characters. There are references to Cars, such as tractors out in and about in several scenes and some of Guido’s cousins are involved in maintaining the planes but no direct ties are made and there are no character overlaps except Brent Musburger playing himself as an announcer for the race.
Interesting to note this film was produced by the Disneytoons Studios. This unit usually produces the direct to video films which has about 10 theatrical releases over the years. It is not a Pixar Studios film as many believe, but John Lasseter is an Executive Producer.
Overall the animation and backgrounds are ok. You do not get the rich details as you had in Pixar films for example. The animation has its moments and some of the details were great to pick up on, for example how the planes move both in the air with their control surfaces as well as on the ground to speak to each other. Another example is as Skipper, a corsair, rolled into a “battle” scene from a high angle of attack with the sun behind him just as you would expect a World War II plane to do. I thought the aircraft carrier sequences were fun to watch and Val Kilmer playing one of the fighter planes (Echo) was a great “Top Gun” nod.
I was a little surprised by some of the dialog choices, for example there is an “Old Yeller” reference and they actually said what happened at the end of the film which usually people never explicitly give away the ending they just elude to it. I am not sure what that line added to the film but it did jump out at me.
For those of you who do enjoy the World of Cars and now planes Disney has already announced the sequel to Planes, Planes: Fire & Rescue which will be released summer 2014.
My screening trip:
Saturday I had an opportunity to attend a screening of Disney film Planes! In the Main Theater on the Disney Studio Lot in Burbank. I arrived and was directed to a parking spot right by the walkway of Legends Plaza. A few feet from my car was the Roy and Minnie sculpture.
To the right the Team Disney (Michael Eisner) Building.
We were directed down a walkway and through the original Animation Building. A fun way to set up a new film walking the hallway where some of the great Disney Animated films were created. (Note this building is no longer used for Animation).
We arrived at the Main Theater, no photography was allowed inside.
After the film we took the long way back to the car. I tried to walk down by the recently renamed soundstage for Annette Funicello but this was as far as I made it before security made us turn around.
It is always nice to walk around the Studio grounds, especially on a mild Southern California day.
One last picture before returning to my car and heading home.