I watched this a few weeks ago, so the details are a little fuzzy buuut here we go!
Oakes Fegley is a truly talented kid. It was also fun to see how far we’ve come with special effects. The aerial shots were pretty cool too. : D That was about the extent of my enjoyment of this film.
I love. loooove. looooved the original Pete’s Dragon as a kid. I loved singing along to “Candle on the Water.” I loved the drunken grandfather. I realize that a lot of the things they had in kid’s movies way back when are no longer considered “ok” themes, but ugh it gave the plot so much more character.
This film felt a little hollow. It’s way more somber and has a lot more Ferngully-level save-the-forest subtext (which I don’t disagree with, it just was not at all a part of the original). The plight of Pete and Elliott in this new rendition just didn’t grab my heartstrings like the ’77 film. Maybe I’m too old and the magic is gone…but I also was a sob-fest during Finding Dory so I don’t really buy that argument.
Summary: If I could only pick one, I’d pick the older version.