In four and a half billion years of existence there have been no creatures more dramatic or scarier. Whether they would be as popular if they existed today and were stomping down the high street, I don't know, but they're perfect for films because they are more spectacular, more awesome than most animals today, more like monsters, and yet they are real.
The new Walking With Dinosaurs film as I think this is the most realistic portrayal of dinosaurs that's ever been done on the big screen. I spend my life studying dinosaurs, pouring over the dry remains of their multi-million-year-old bones. This film brings dinosaurs to life unlike anything I've ever seen before. It brought a tear to my eye seeing the Gorgosaurus for the first time.
Throughout my film-going life, effects have been if not quite a dirty word for certain audiences, then one met with a weary roll of the eyes. But I've also always felt the snottiness around effects arose because they reminded critics in particular of the movies' origins as a circus entertainment, a trashy diversion designed to thrill sensation-hungry crowds.