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Nightmare Fuel / Dinosaur

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"Okay, what's the worst thing it could be?!"

"Be careful near the shadows. Mean things like to hide there."
Yar (in the video game)

Dinosaur is markedly darker than many other films in the Disney Animated Canon, and it shows.

WARNING: Spoilers are unmarked.

  • The opening scene featuring a Carnotaurus, which chases down and mauls a Pachyrhinosaurus to death, thrashing the hapless herbivore to the ground as it cries out in terror before the camera cuts away.
  • The meteor strike is pretty nightmarish.
    • The massive meteor falls out of the sky, creating a massive explosion that sends shockwaves hurtling into the island. The lemurs desperately try to flee from the approaching peril somehow, completely unaware that they can't escape something like this. It's also terrifying in the sense that the impact resembles a nuclear strike, complete with a delayed blast wave.
    • When the meteor hits, it is deadly silent, so the fear doesn't kick in until the shockwaves reach the island and the meteorites start to hit. And keep in mind that there is fearful music right before the meteor strikes...then there is silence as the blast fills the sky.
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    • Poor Yar is desperately trying to leap to safety, but is too old and weak to cover much ground before Aladar scoops him up. He certainly would've died if Aladar hadn't been running in the same area.
    • Zini narrowly escapes a meteorite when he finally leaps to Aladar and the others.
    • The monster cloud itself is terrifying, a giant, ever-mushrooming, hellish wave of fire and brimstone that blasts the island like a nuclear blast, leveling the courtship tree like it's a piece of broccoli.
    • Aladar reaches the end of the island, a dead end, and looks back only to see the monster cloud moments away. With no choice, he dives into the raging sea from the top of a 500 foot tall cliff, moments before the monster cloud arrives, with the tiny lemurs losing their hold on him and flying into the sea. Thankfully, somehow, they all manage to survive.
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    • Three words: "They're all gone."
  • The Velociraptors are the first predators to menace Aladar and his family, likely the first to menace them in their lives.
    • The group is initially curious to finally find another sign of life. But they start to realize they're in trouble when more of them begin to appear and circle them from everywhere. The final proof that Aladar's family needs that they're in mortal peril is when the alpha of the pack bares its teeth menacingly, almost in a Jump Scare.
    • The chase that ensues has the raptors biting into Aladar, trying to eat him alive, and only just missing the lemurs.
    • The close-up of the raptor's eye after Eema saying, "You consider yourself lucky that's all that's following us."
    • Despite Aladar's group being safe from the raptors as they're with the herd, Aladar comes across a dead Struthiomimus, and notices the raptors trailing the herd from far behind. It's a grim sign of what will happen to any on the journey who can't make it.
    Aladar: On your feet, Eema! We can't let those things eat you! They're out there waiting!
  • Kron can be pretty scary, given his effortless mood swings. He goes from a calm but condescending tone when meeting Aladar to a chuckle, then a ferocious and low growl that he'd better watch himself.
    • His callous treatment of the herd is also pretty scary, as he declares that, while half of the herd may not survive a water-less push to the Nesting Grounds, he'll save the half that deserves to live.
    • The final two times he encounters Aladar, he goes ballistic and begins viciously thrashing him just for questioning his authority.
  • Everything involving the Carnotaurs.
    • A pair of them is revealed to be trailing the herd, following the tracks of the hundred-strong group, and aren't far behind. The fact that the raptors trailing the herd immediately scatter at their approach quickly establishes the Carnotaurs as dinosaurs to be feared.
    • The scene in which Bruton and the scout accompanying him are ambushed by the Carnotaurs in the canyon. Bruton suspects something is amiss as they're stalked, and just as he and the scout are about to leave, the scout is suddenly grabbed by a Carnotaur and dragged away bellowing in terror. As Bruton tries to escape the second Carnotaur, the first predator can be seen chomping down on a hunk of flesh it's already torn off.
    • Bruton returns to the herd and warns Kron, who listens just as one of the Carnotaurs lets out a roar. It's an omen that the Carnotaurs are literally on top of the sleeping herd. Kron understandably panics and moves the herd out.
    • During our next check-up with the Carnotaurs, we see they've reached the lake and are within walking distance of Aladar's slow, weak misfits. A few hours later, they've found them in the cave.
      • The shot of the Carnotaurs from below as they approach the cave, lit by the lightning storm, as seen in the page image above.
      • They slowly approach the cave, noticing a rock that moved seemingly on its own. One of them looks around, not knowing that Aladar is right in front of him, covered in shadows. The others pause and stare helplessly as Aladar is faced down. A flash of lightning, and Aladar is revealed. The Carnotaurs then pursue him and drag him to his apparent death as he tries to help Eema flee while his family screams in horror at the sight. Aladar would've been devoured had the Carnotaurs not bickered and given Bruton the opportunity to intervene.
      • Heck, the earsplitting cry one of the Carnotaurs makes upon finally spotting Aladar.
      • Wanna know what makes the scene scarier? Through the entire film, the carnotaurs don't show emotion aside from complete viciousness. But in this one scene, as soon as it sees Aladar, you can see it react for a brief moment of surprise, one of the few instances of it showing emotion, before going right back into vicious predator mode. It's literally a split second, but it's there.
      • Bruton collapses the cave to kill the Carnotaurs. He's seen desperately trying to hobble to safety, but is overwhelmed by the cave-in and is buried and crushed to death with one of the Carnotaurs. Aladar uncovers his face only to see him twitch a little before finally dying.
    • Aladar encounters the surviving Carnotaur on his way to the herd and only barely hides in time while the beast eats a dead Stygimiloch.
    • The Carnotaur menacingly charges the herd before being driven off. It then goes after the lone Kron, chases him to a dead end on a cliff, grabs him in its jaws, and throws him against a jagged boulder. Kron dies of his injuries soon afterward.
    • The fact when the Carnotaur spies Kron by himself, its face contorts into the reptilian equivalent of a Slasher Smile as it spots easy prey.
    • During the fight, Neera tries to protect a mortally-injured Kron from the Carnotaur. Berserk with rage and hunger, the monster (which is at least twice her size) easily bats Neera aside, pins her to the floor with a clawed foot, and is about seconds away from dealing a killing blow when Aladar steps in with a tail swipe to the predator's face.
    • The Carnotaur plummets to its death, and its body appears to be torn in half by the impact.
  • In one of the DVD games, it's dark, it's raining heavily, and you're wandering alone in a series of caves. One wrong step, and a Carnotaur charges out of nowhere and kills you.


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