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Pete's Dragon

Pete's Dragon (1977)



Average Rating: 4.8/10
Reviews Counted: 22
Fresh: 11 | Rotten: 11

Boring and slow, this is a lesser Disney work, though the animation isn't without its charms.

No Score Yet...

Average Rating: N/A
Critic Reviews: 3
Fresh: 2 | Rotten: 1

Boring and slow, this is a lesser Disney work, though the animation isn't without its charms.



liked it
Average Rating: 3.2/5
User Ratings: 58,712

My Rating

Movie Info

Based on a story by Hollywood old-timers Seton I. Miller and S. S. Field, Pete's Dragon divides its time between its flesh-and-blood characters and an animated green dragon. Pete (Sean Marshall), a lonely orphan boy in turn-of-the-century Maine, runs away from his abusive foster family. He stumbles upon a lovable dragon named Elliot, and the two become inseparable companions. Elliot is visible only to Pete, leading the townsfolk to assume that the boy is a trifle tetched. Pete finally finds


Science Fiction & Fantasy, Kids & Family

Jan 16, 2001

Buena Vista Pictures

Watch It Now



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All Critics (22) | Top Critics (3) | Fresh (11) | Rotten (11) | DVD (13)

An enchanting and humane fable.

November 14, 2007 Full Review Source: Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The dragon itself grunts, grins and goofs around, but isn't half as appealing as its creators obviously hoped. More character and better animation would have helped.

June 24, 2006 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

You don't often see children's musicals as ambitious as this one any more.

May 9, 2005 Full Review Source: New York Times | Comment (1)
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Offbeat live-action/animation mix with lots of drinking.

January 2, 2011 Full Review Source: Common Sense Media
Common Sense Media

The animation is much the best part of Pete's Dragon, a film not surfeited with great & timeless elements.

December 15, 2010 Full Review Source: Antagony & Ecstasy
Antagony & Ecstasy

A horrid assault on the senses.

December 13, 2009 Full Review Source: EDGE Boston
EDGE Boston

Another not very charming but harmless fusion of animation and good old real-life.

October 1, 2009 Full Review Source: Empire Magazine
Empire Magazine

Boring, annoying and not funny, Pete's Dragon is one of the dullest films from Disney that I've ever seen.

August 19, 2009 Full Review Source: Movie Views

In the overall realm of Disney magic, Pete's Dragon is a card trick rather than a grand illusion.

August 19, 2009 Full Review Source: Movie Metropolis
Movie Metropolis

As a testament to its founder's legacy, this is still somewhat lesser Disney. But when viewed in combination for what passes as House of Mouse merriment today's utterly brilliant.

August 16, 2009 Full Review Source: PopMatters

The film lacks the emotional complexity and classic status of previous Disney films.

November 14, 2007 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

Average Disney, a disappointment if you expect another 'Mary Poppins.'

August 29, 2005

This movie sucked so bad, I even hated it as a kid.

December 22, 2002 | Comment (1)
Juicy Cerebellum

A Touching, humourous, and ultimately warm family film.

September 18, 2002

Audience Reviews for Pete's Dragon

As a Disney animation enthusiast, not having seen this live-action/animation mix until now was my biggest sin (this and actually having seen a few of their direct-to-video sequelized offenders). Elliot the dragon is quite an endearing creation, but when he's not on the screen (and that happens too often), the whole film falls flat with no "real" star big enough to carry the thing. Coreographer Onna White tries to infuse some of the energy that made "Oliver!" so memorable, but the mundane songs she has to work with (the sole exception being the poignant "Candle on the water") make matters hard. It is technically accomplished, but it is another reminder of the sad time when Disney stopped making films for families and started making films for children. At least it gave us one of the coolest floats at Disney's Electrical Parade as one of its sole legacies.
October 27, 2011
Matheus Carvalho

Super Reviewer

Good heartwarming musical adventure filled with thrilling plot twists, this film is a wonderful blend of live-action and Disney animation. This is a sort of a children's version of Harvey and another attempt for repeat the Mary Poppins magic. There are a LOT of songs, even for a Disney musical.
Settings look wonderful. I wonder if Passamaquoddy exists for real. Nevertheless, Passamaquoddy is one heck of a name.
Jim Dale as the unscrupulous Dr Terminus, and Red Buttons as his dim side-kick, are genuinely funny villains. The blending together of animated Elliot and the living, breathing actors is very good - especially for 1977 - though in a shipwreck sequence near the end the special effects are utterly dreadful.
May 22, 2011
Dean McKenna

Super Reviewer

I will never fully understand what disney was thinking when they decided to make a live action movie with an animated dragon. If only all homeless slave orphaned kids had imaginary friends to distract them from their terrible lives. This seems like it should have been more bizarre than it really ends up being, but it's still worth seeing for the nutso logic.
June 4, 2010

Super Reviewer

"Pete's Dragon" is one of the most underrated Disney movies ever made. It's one of the few Disney movies that I haven't ever heard a lot about. It's about an orphan named Pete (Sean Marshall) and his only friend Elliot, a dragon. Once Pete is adopted by some people who live in a lighthouse, the movie takes an interesting twist.
I thought "Pete's Dragon" was a good movie. It's entertaining, parts of it are funny, and it even has a few good songs. If you would like to see an interesting and entertaining movie, I recommend getting "Pete's Dragon." NOTE: That was my Amazon review from the year 2000. Would've been cool to have my own dragon....
August 15, 2009

Super Reviewer

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March 20, 2013:
Disney Planning Pete's Dragon Remake
We're guessing CGI will be involved.
August 28, 2012:
Kurtzman and Orci Producing Dragonology
They'll take filmgoers back to the 19th century on an epic quest to save humanity from extinction.
July 13, 2006:
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Red Buttons, the beloved red-haired comedian and songwriter whose career spanned seven decades, died...

Foreign Titles

  • Elliot - Das Schmunzelmonster (DE)
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