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Western Animation / 64,000,000 Years Ago

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64,000,000 Years Ago is a 1981 Stop Motion animated short directed by Bill Maylone for the National Film Board of Canada.

The film revolves around the lives of North American dinosaurs in the late Cretaceous period, through the eyes of an early mammal trying to survive.

The NFB has made the short available on their official Youtube channel.


The film provides examples of:

  • Adult Fear: The mammal is has to survive not only for herself, but her offspring as well.
  • Anachronism Stew: If we're to take the short's title at face value, then it places the date of the Cretaceous-Paleogene extinction event a full one to two million years after it occurred in Real Life.
  • End of an Era: As the dinosaurs die off, the mammal emerges to dominate the Earth.
  • Evil Egg Eater: An Ornithomimus is caught eating eggs by a mother Triceratops, who proceeds to violently impale it with her horn.
  • Family-Unfriendly Death: Despite being aimed at children, the short contains some surprisingly violent scenes.
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    • First, when the mother Triceratops catches the Ornithomimus eating her eggs, she impales it on her horn. The poor creature screams and writhes in agony as it dies, at which point the Triceratops scrapes the corpse off.
    • Later, after failing to takes down an Ankylosaurus and a mother Triceratops, the Tyrannosaurus bites and suffocates an Edmontosaurus, though the actual eating is cut away from.
  • Gory Discretion Shot: While the actual killing is shown in all its glory, the scene fades to black before the Tyrannosaurus can actually start eating the Edmontosaurus.
  • Kill 'Em All: This being the end of the Cretaceous period, only the mammal is left standing by the end of the film.
  • Mama Bear: The mother Triceratops not only successfully fights of a Tyrannosaurus attack, but she also kills an Ornithomimus trying to eat her eggs (the mammal avoids the same fate by scurrying off before she can be spotted).
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  • Spiritual Predecessor: To Prehistoric Beast, another stop-motion short about life in the late Cretaceous.
  • Stock Dinosaurs: While the mammal doesn't seem to represent any species in particular, instead being some kind of generic rodent, the dinosaurs all belong to familiar genera.


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