Pixar is known for four things: 1.) Superior animation that sets the bar high for other animation studios. 2.) Sentimental stories that leave you with tears streaming down your smiling face. 3.) Clever references to past Disney and Pixar films. 4.) A post-credit scene that makes the audience laugh or teases to another movie. Pixar's latest animated feature hits all these marks, but what can audiences expect in the post-credits scene in The Good Dinosaur ? I hate to break the news to you, but there is nothing to expect because there isn't one. (Spoilers ahead so read at your own risk.)
The movie's hero, Arlo, goes through a lot during the movie. He is born as the runt of his litter so he immediately lacks the self-esteem and confidence that his brother and sister have. Because of this, he stops at nothing to make his father proud. Things take a turn for the worst when his dad dies and he gets split from his family. While trying to find his way home, he runs into a feral cave boy, Spot, and they find out they have more in common than they think.
The two go on a journey home together and they develop a "boy and his dog" relationship (Arlo being the "boy" and Spot being the dog). When he finally finds his way home, the two go their separate ways. Arlo reunites with his family, Spot with his. True to Pixar storytelling, you'll be grabbing for the tissues. It kind of just ends there... with no post-credits scene.
The ending leaves you wanting more, but there is no signature tag at the end. I admit, it's disappointing, but the movie is so self-contained, that it doesn't really need one — but if it did have one, what would it have?
If I had it my way, I would have the post-credits scene focus on Spot's family. During the reunion, audiences will barely get a glimpse of them. All that is shown is that he has a mother, father, brother and sister. They hug, reunite and go off into the wilderness — and that's it. It would be nice to get to know them a little more. And honestly, Spot was my favorite character. I totally wouldn't mind a spin-off movie with Spot and his family — and a post credits scene would have been a perfect opportunity to set that up.
Arlo's story is resolved and it's absolutely heartwarming to see him reunited with his family — but has he really been cured of all his fears? In the beginning of the movie he is scared of the chickens (or mutated versions of) that he has to feed in their coop — and if you see them you'd be scared too. Has he totally overcome his chicken phobia? A funny little stinger at the end showing him interacting with the chickens would have been a treat.
And my one final wish for a Good Dinosaur post-credits scene is to see Arlo run into Spot years and years later. There's something about a delayed reunion of friends that just gets to me.
The Good Dinosaur may not have a post-credits scene, but it sure has enough in the movie to keep you satisfied.
Image: Walt Disney Pictures/Pixar