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From the ones who brought you Pixar’s Cars and Cars 2 comes the newest animated picture, Planes. As the name suggests, the movie revolves around airplanes, including “Dusty Crophopper,” a dust-cropping airplane who wants to be the best plane racer in the world.

Positive Elements

The characters (planes) within the movie had a unique flair, each representing a different country like India, Britain or Mexico. Without spoiling the plot, the planes world-wide race took them around the globe and through some amazing scenery. Moreover, this underdog-who-fights-the-odds-to-compete story will fire the imagination of many children, and the military references are all positive.

Negative Elements

The movie was fairly clean and family-friendly, but there were some crude jokes and double references throughout. Further, there are several moments depicting wooing a love interest between a man and woman (plane) that parents will have to explain. Finally, the characters did not quite live up to the lively personalities of Cars, such as “Lightening McQueen” and “Tow-mater.”

Spiritual Content

The religious and spiritual references in the movie were, unfortunately, nonChristian. In fact, there is a recycling reference while they are in India that clearly implies reincarnation. Be that as it may, the movie upholds the timeless, universal truth of, well, truth. Further, the heroes and villains each display the goodwill and ill-will that will help children recognize right and wrong.


Within the Pixar movie library, Cars and Cars 2 are among the most beloved. Because of that, this movie was bound to fall short of those expectations. If compared to the ordinary children’s/family movie, however, it was above average and fairly entertaining. There are some scenes that could scare some of the youngest of viewers, and parents really need to make sure children know that the crude references and imitative phrases are a no-no. Nevertheless, I predict Planes will do pretty well at the box office, as Cars fans turn out in fleets to see it (though they just might leave with their tires a little deflated).

Rating: 2.5 stars