The Land Before Time

Lovable dinosaur friends return in TV series.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The friends hail from many different species, and they learn to work together and rely on one another's strengths to overcome obstacles. Lessons in friendship, dependability, patience, and being true to yourself are central to the plot.

Violence & scariness

Aggressive dinosaurs roar menacingly, lunge and snap at smaller animals, and smash rock and walls in their way. Earthquakes, falling rocks, and waterfalls often put the young characters in danger.

Sexy stuff
Not applicable
Not applicable
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this animated series -- inspired by the popular movie series of the same name -- shows kids that the bonds of friendship go deeper than appearance, ability, or, in this case, species. Despite their differences, the characters appreciate one another for who they are and often combine their individual strengths to conquer adversity. Very young viewers may be frightened by some aggressive predators who roar and snap at smaller animals, but older kids will enjoy the group's adventures and benefit from the show's positive messages.

What's the story?

Nearly two decades (and many sequels) after the original Land Before Time movie, curious, level-headed longneck dinosaur Littlefoot (voiced by Cody Arens) and his prehistoric pals return in this animated series that promotes strength of character, dependability, self-respect, and friendship. Littleneck's band of young dinosaurs includes nervous pterodactyl Petrie (Jeff Bennett); stubborn triceratops Cera (Anndi McAfee); sensitive parasaurolophus Ducky (Aria Curzon); gentle stegosaurus Spike (Rob Paulsen); jovial T. rex Chomper (Max Burkholder), and feathered oviraptor Ruby (Meghan Strange). Life in the Great Valley is as good as it gets for the friends. They've always got each other to lean on when they get in a jam, and there is always something fun to do -- as long as they keep their distance from villainous T. rex Red Claw (Peter Sepenuk), who terrorizes the leaf-eating dinosaurs living in the Mysterious Beyond.

Is it any good?


The Land Before Time franchise owes its tremendous staying power to lovable characters who ably mix positive messages about self-esteem, friendship, and teamwork with adventurous spirits. In one segment, for example, Ducky is insecure about being so small compared to his friends. Turning to Ruby for help, he's reminded that others' perception of him depends on how he sees himself: "If you can think big, you can talk big, too," she says.

Kids will revel in the prehistoric pals' antics, but very young viewers may be frightened by some of the menacing predators who smash walls and snap at the smaller dinosaurs.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about friendship. How do the characters show their friends that they care about them? Do they ever disagree? How do they resolve their differences? Kids: Who are your friends? What do you like about them? How do you show your feelings about them? How do you feel if they hurt your feelings? Families can also talk about teamwork. How do Littlefoot and his friends work together to get themselves out of trouble? Kids: When have you been part of a team? How do teammates support each other? What special abilities do you bring to a team?

TV details

Cast:Aria Curzon, Cody Arens, Jeff Bennett
Network:Cartoon Network
Genre:Kids' Animation
Topics:Dinosaurs, Friendship
TV rating:TV-G
Available on:DVD

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Adult Written bykeizion July 10, 2015
age 6+

1/10 cartoon network supported the mining of this movie to death

I watched this, I though it was really repetitive. And don't get me started on the songs. And then how they start to tilt the animal to human a little bit to the human. The messages can be really easy to understand and doesn't take much thought to. Red claw was a overall JOKE. How he heard that voice got him scared so bad he ran out of the cave screaming. Characters personalities seem to be over expressed and why does little foot always have to save the day not anyone else? I can tell you the sequels were better than this. But overall I still have the visual in my head for 19.5 years and on.
Parent of a 8, 12, and 15 year old Written byHelen Bonder July 23, 2013
age 15+

it is now on TV land

children under the age of 13 try to handle bad things, from the age of 13 thru age 18 it's fun 2 not doo ba things adults over the age of 18, they may find happiness, and i don't think The Land Before Time is appropriate for chuldren under 16.
What other families should know
Too much swearing
Kid, 11 years old April 10, 2013
age 4+


VIOLENCE- Mild cartoon dino action/peril. Groups of small dinos are surrounded by rapters, but then are chased away by herd leaders. Dinos crawl across logs, to evade on-coming predators. Some mild forest fires. All cartoon. This is the perfect movie/series for ages 4 and up.
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Too much violence


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