A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that The Land Before Time II: The Great Valley Adventure, is part of a series of movies starring animated baby dinosaurs. While some of the scenes involving large, snarling, and sharp-toothed dinosaurs might be a bit scary for younger viewers, the overall takeaway from this movie is the importance and beauty of the cycle of life, from youth to old age. Characters care for an unhatched egg and learn the ways of nature when the hatched baby dinosaur must follow its ingrained needs for survival. Watching this movie can inspire discussion between parents and kids about the responsibility and care of animals.
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What's the story?
Littlefoot and his friends decide to go into the Mysterious Beyond, where they discover an abandoned dinosaur egg. They defend the egg from goofy predators, but when it hatches, they discover that the dinosaur is a "sharp tooth." In spite of this, Littlefoot and his friends bond with the baby dinosaur, even as it becomes obvious that this baby is beginning to follow its biological imperative and attempt to kill and eat meat. These dinosaur kids must learn to understand the cycle of life, and the ways of nature as they make difficult decisions.
Is it any good?
The second movie from The Land Before Time franchise, THE GREAT VALLEY ADVENTURE is an entertaining movie for young kids that also imparts valuable lessons. It teaches about the cycle of life, the responsibility involved in taking care of living things, and the importance of allowing wild animals to follow their biological imperatives. In addition to the overall message, there is plenty of action to keep everyone engaged.
While nothing like the dinosaurs in, say, Jurassic Park, some of the dinosaurs might be too scary for younger audiences. For some parents, the screaming of the dinosaur children might induce headaches; besides this, the only real serious flaw in the movie is the sense that the child actors voicing the dinosaurs were given a little too much leeway to the point where many of them sound rather annoying instead of cute or childlike. But, overall, this is an enjoyable movie with some important lessons to impart.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about dinosaurs. What kinds of dinosaurs were there? Do any dinosaurs still exist? What did dinosaurs eat?
What would this movie be like if it was about kids instead of dinos? Can you think of any movies with similar storylines?
What lessons do Littlefoot and his friends learn?
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