Movie Review: ‘Planes’ is worth seeing, but not quite on par with ‘Cars’


If you enjoy the “Cars” movies, you’ll like Disney’s “Planes”. It has a simple story but there’s enough going on to keep your interest.

As it says at the start of the movie, “Planes” is part of the World of Cars. It’s a place where all forms of transportation are alive and they run a planet without humans. This story is about Dusty Crophopper (Dane Cook). He’s a crop duster airplane who wants to do more than fly back and forth over plants, he wants to be a racer. His best friends are his mechanic, Dottie (Terri Hatcher) and a gas truck, Chug (Brad Garrett).

Chug tries to help Dusty practice his speed racing and Dottie does her best to keep him tuned up, but they’re cars, what do they know about flying? So he tries to convince an old military plane named Skipper (Stacy Keach) to give him some tips. Dusty enters an around-the-world race and qualifies. The rest of the movie follows his struggle to go from a laughing stock to a winner.

Although “Planes” was done by DisneyToon Studios (in India it seems by reading the credits) instead of Pixar, most kids won’t know the difference. Looking at the graphics, I couldn’t tell the difference, but “Planes” lacks some of the top voice talent of “Cars” and some of the humor Pixar usually puts into their movies. I don’t think “Planes” will appeal to adults as much as kids, unlike most Pixar movies. Although a simple plot, the story has enough interesting characters and developments to keep everyone’s interest.

I kept expecting to see Mater watching the race on television back in Radiator Springs. This was a missed opportunity. The only two characters I recognized from “Cars” was the racing announcer, Brent Mustangburger (Brent Musburger) and some tractor cows. (The voice of John Ratzenberger does make an appearance too.)

If you can afford the extra cost, I’d recommend seeing it in 3D. There’s no need to stay through the credits, as there’s no extra scenes but there is the notice that Dusty will return in “Planes Fire and Rescue”.

There isn’t much tie in to the theme parks. As you exit the Soarin’ ride at Epcot, they’re handing out “Planes” pins to the kids. You’ll also find lots of “Planes” merchandise in the larger Disney World theme parks.

Here’s a look at the red carpet premier in Hollywood:

Disney Planes Red Carpet Movie Premier at El Capitan Theatre in Hollywood

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One Comment

  1. “Looking at the graphics, I couldn’t tell the difference” – you cannot tell the difference btw a cheaply produced Prana flick and a Pixar movie? Jesus, Eisner was right… People should boycott this film, because if it is successful, why would Disney spend 200 million plus on Pixar or Disney movies (and keep jobs in the US…), when the audience thinks that stuff produced in India for a few bucks looks just as good?