We're Back! A Dinosaur's Story is an animated film, produced by Steven Spielberg's Amblimation animation studio, distributed by Universal Pictures, and originally released to movie theatres in 1993.
It was loosely based on the 1987 Hudson Talbott children's book We're Back! A Dinosaur's Story, which was narrated from the perspective of the main character, a Tyrannosaurus rex named Rex.
|Spoiler warning: The following contains plot details about|
the entire movie.
The story starts as Buster, a young bird tired of his siblings picking on him, packs up and leaves his nest despite his mother telling him that he is too young to do so. Buster jumps off the tree, but is yet unable to fly. He falls down and meets Rex, the now-intelligent Orange Tyrannosaurus rex, who is playing golf. They introduce themselves to each other. When Buster questions Rex on his ability to play golf, because he is a dinosaur, Rex replies by saying he is smart enough. Buster then tells Rex that he is leaving home to "join a circus". Then, Rex tells him that some of his friends have been in circus, and the story unfolds.
The scene changes to a flashback, and a small dinosaur is being chased by a hungry T-Rex from earlier years. Then, a gigantic winged spacecraft flies from the sky and knocks him down. A small alien flies out of the craft and starts advertising "Brain Grain Cereal" (which can make anybody who eats it intelligent) to the T-Rex, who tries to eat the alien in return. The alien then lures the dinosaur into the spacecraft, trapping its head inside. A couple of armed machines feed T-Rex the cereal, and he undergoes a change, becoming intelligent, able to speak, and gentle-looking.
Then the T-Rex receives a name of Rex, and is introduced to other dinosaurs who have benefited from the Brain Grain Cereal, i.e. Dweeb, the Green Parasaurolophus, Woog, the Blue Triceratops and Elsa, the Lavender Pterodactyl. Rex is surprised that he can say his own name and congratulates with his new friends. They all appear to be quite skillful in speech. For example, Woog plays on the word hotdog and "hot dog," Dweeb tells Rex that he should eat hotdogs with mustard on them, and Elsa flirts with Rex, who she calls handsome.
The dinosaurs then meet Captain Neweyes, the captain of the winged ship, which also functions as a time machine. He lets them listen to the Wish Radio, which tells the wishes of young children in forms of bubbles. Most children's wish is that they want to meet a real dinosaur. Woog shouts out that the dinosaurs means themselves. Neweyes agrees and then asks them to follow his request, that they will meet the children who wants to see them. Rex then sees a lonely boy, who wishes that he had a friend.
Rex and his friends fervently accepts the request, and Neweyes informs them that there are some things that they should know. They have to reach the Museum of Natural History, near the Central Park. They should meet Dr. Bleep, who is a scientist eager to meet the dinosaurs, and avoid Professor Screweyes, the evil brother of Captain Neweyes and an eccentric scientist who owns a circus. Then the machine travels to the current time. Before the machine starts time-travelling, a girl from the Wish Radio wishes for a Thanksgiving hat.
The flying vessel arrives at New York, in current time, at whose beauty the dinosaurs marvel. Voob then straps them to parachutes and a lifeboat before dropping them on the river. The friends accidentally falls on a boy named Louie, who was on a wooden boat. After they get out of water, they ask where this place is, and Louie tells them it is New York City, while he is swimming.
Surprised, the dinosaurs help him out. They then briefly introduce each other, before Rex falls into the water while looking upon skyscrapers. Louie climbs on a forklift, saving Rex's life. Afterwards, Rex realize that Louie was the boy who wished for a friend, and tells him that he will be a friend of his, and the friends walk out of the scene with Louie. Dr. Bleep, with some posters to paste, arrives late, and mistakes the forklift and other construction vehicles for the dinosaurs. He then put on his glasses, and realize that he came a little late, but cheers himself up again and move on.
Louie hides his new friends in the back alley, telling that people will panic if they see the giant reptiles. He calls Elsa a bat, who then correct him that she is not a bat but a pterodactyl. He asks her whether she can fly, and Elsa smiles at him. Next moment, Louie is shown telling Elsa to slow down or they are going to die. While flying, Louie sees a sobbing girl, whose Thanksgiving hat is blown by the wind.
He quickly grabs the hat and ask Elsa back. They soon land on the girl's balcony and ask her why she is crying. The girl, who claimed that she was not crying, explains that her parents are both too busy to be with her at important occasions. She also show them some pictures, which she took alone instead of taking with her parents. Louie then asks her to come with them and she complies, throwing her hat out the window. The hat then "lands" on the head of the girl who previously wished for such a hat.
Spoilers end here.
- John Goodman - Rex
- Blaze Berdahl - Buster
- Rhea Perlman - Mother Bird
- Jay Leno - Voob
- René Le Vant - Woog
- Felicity Kendal - Elsa
- Charles Fleischer - Dweeb
- Walter Cronkite - Captain Neweyes
- Joey Shea - Louie
- Julia Child - Dr. Bleeb
- Kenneth Mars - Professor Screweyes
- Yeardley Smith - Cecilia
- Martin Short - Stubbs the Clown
- The film was released at around the same time as Spielberg's Jurassic Park, and some of the film's advertising suggested parents with young children should see this film instead of the darker and more violent live-action dinosaur film.
- To promote the movie's release, a giant helium balloon of Rex the T-Rex was included in the real-life 1993 Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York. Unfortunately, as the parade moved through Columbus Circle, high winds caught the Rex balloon and caused it to list over the nearby sidewalk. The head of the Rex balloon struck a protruding street light and popped, but the rest of the dinosaur's body remained inflated until the end of the parade.
This soundtrack included a Grammy-winning James Horner song, "Roll Back the Rock (to the Dawn of Time)."
Soundtrack album track listing
- Main Title (Primeval Times) - 4:14
- Flying Forward in Time - 5:48
- Welcome to New York - 2:26
- First Wish, First Flight - 3:48
- A Hint of Trouble (The Contact) - 1:49
- Roll Back the Rock (to the Dawn of Time): performed by John Goodman - 2:55
- Grand Slam Demons - 2:05
- Hot Pursuit - 3:18
- Central Park - 1:21
- Screweyes' Circus (Opening Act) - 1:12
- Circus - 2:29
- Fright Radio (Rex's Sacrifice) - 6:19
- Grand Demon Parade - 7:39
- The Kids Wake Up (A New Day) - 2:57
- The Transformation - 5:30
- Special Visitors to the Museum of Natural History - 2:12
- Roll Back the Rock (to the Dawn of Time): performed by Little Richard - 2:56