Disney’s PLANES Movie Review


PLANES is the typical underdog, or underplane, family movie. From above the world of CARS, comes a world of PLANES, aviators who vie to be the fastest racer in the world. Dusty Crophopper is a crop duster, a type of plane used to spray crops with fertilizer. He dreams of racing in a marathon-type competition around the world but he has just one not-so-minor setback – he’s deathly afraid of heights. With the help of his mentor, a grounded (literally) Navy corsair, and his faithful plane and car friends, Dusty manages to stay in the race, inspiring the world with his courage.

I didn’t expect much out of this movie, seeing that it was set to be a DVD-release (and not by Pixar!). However, I hoped that the hilarity and dry wit of CARS would rub off of the aviators. That was not the case. The movie’s funniest moments are all crammed into the trailer, and nothing more. The plot is straightforward, characters aren’t developed, and the race is a bit too easy for the planes, but alas, one can’t have everything she wants.

Nevertheless, the visuals are breath taking, all from a birds-eye vantage point. The planes actually look as if they are soaring, not just flimsy models on strings. I like the idea of racing all around the world, from skimming over the treacherous waters of the Pacific to dodging the jagged Himalayan Mountains. None of the flips and turns seems out-of-place. Two flight sequences in particular are superbly gripping and hair-raising – the first when Dusty crashes into the ocean and the second when Dusty flies through a narrow railroad tunnel. Props to animators for taking plane animation to a whole new level and yet keeping it grounded at the same time. The 3D intensified the flying sequences as viewers stretched out their hands to touch the image.

Voice-overs are fantastic. I love Dane Cook (Dusty), with his slightly deep voice and a side of sarcasm; Teri Hatcher (Dottie), a realist yet supportive; and Roger Craig Smith (Ripslinger), his voice perfect for an egomaniacal malicious champ who aims to eliminate competition by any means. The cast includes voices from different cultural backgrounds. If certain characters were given more screen time, this movie-going experience would have been more enjoyable. There’s nothing objectionable and the movie has great messages about conquering your fears, so PLANES is a Pick It, 4 out of 5 stars. If you want to feel the exhilaration of flying and watch planes battle in the sky, soar with PLANES, in theaters August 9! All Ages.

First Published @kidspickflicks 


About Cassandra Hsiao

Cassandra Hsiao is a senior at OCSA (Orange County School of the Arts). Her work has been nationally recognized by the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards and National Student Poets Program. She has been chosen as finalists of playwriting competitions held by California Young Playwrights, The Blank Theatre, Writopia Labs, and Princeton University. Her poetry, essays and reviews have appeared in TeenReads, Jet Fuel Review, Feminine Inquiry, Aerie International and more. She also conducts print and on-camera interviews as a Star Reporter and Film Critic for multiple online outlets. She won a National Gracie Award in Student Online Video Host Category by The Alliance for Women in Media Foundation . https://twitter.com/Cassandra_Hsiao

Posted on August 8, 2013, in Movie Reviews, Star Rapture Blog and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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