Pete's Dragon ★★½

A children's film in every aspect of the word – characters are black and white, the dialog simplistic, even the portrayal of the dragon itself – seeming more dog than dragon (which I suppose is a nod to the children's book that belongs to Pete and gives the dragon Eliott its name). Every dragon portrayed everywhere has short front legs – but not this guy, which again, makes him seem more canine and thus less scary for the small ones (as is the fact that he is furry... really???).

But all that aside, the tale is earnest enough, as one of those saturday afternoon, made for TV movies kind of experience, and I'm sure that most kids 10 and under will be fulfilled by this film, but as adult fare... entertaining? Not really, in spite of the appearance of Robert Redford and his introduction of the magic of dragons.

The climactic chase scene is kind of silly, and again, the camera's focus is so childish (making sure you see the foot on the accelerator of the semi – as it picks up speed... the kind of thing that a 10 year old may find necessary to have shown to them, but unnecessary for anyone older).

So there it is – set your 10 year old in front of the DVR, pop this in and let him enjoy it while you get a buzz from a very stiff, and very dry martini.