Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Popcorn and a Movie: How To Train Your Dragon

Calling all fantasy/dragon lovers! There's a new movie you guys should see! A while ago Justin and I went to see How To Train Your Dragon, Dreamworks' latest film. The story is about a Viking boy named Hiccup who isn't like the other Vikings. He's small and skinny and his father, the Viking chief, won't let him fight dragons because he knows Hiccup will just mess up everything. But one night during a dragon attack, Hiccup pulls out his latest invention, a cannon that will fire ball-and-chain missiles. He hits a Night Fury, the dragon that no one has ever fought before. The dragon falls over another part of the island.

When he goes looking for it, Hiccup discovers that he can't kill dragons. He just can't. So he sets the dragon free and goes home, only to find that his father is determined to give him a fresh start. He wants Hiccup to start dragon-training the next day while he goes on a sailing mission to try to find the dragon nest.

Of course, Hiccup can barely hold a shield, much less fight off dragons. But as his friendship with the Night Fury (dubbed Toothless despite having a mouthful of sharp, retractable teeth) goes on, he discovers something—in stead of fighting dragons, he can tame them. Soon he's the wonder of the village, and he's also riding Toothless. All seems well until his father discovers that he's just using tricks to avoid fighting the dragons—and that Toothless showed him where the dragon's nest is.

My Thoughts: There's a couple of slightly questionable jokes, and if you're squeamish, Toothless does cough up half a fish to share with Hiccup. Hiccup has a crush on a Viking girl, Astrid. They do kiss (although it's a funny, lighthearted moment). And, of course, Hiccup lies to and disobeys his father.

But, at the end of the movie Hiccup and his dad are on good terms. They both apologize to each other at one point. Hiccup really does try to help both the Vikings and the dragons see that they can peacefully coexist. And—the part that I was really glad for—Hiccup's heroism is shown with a cost to himself, but a cost that he doesn't mind because he knows he saved everyone else.

There are some really laughable lines ("Thanks for nothing, you worthless reptile!"), and the dragons are pretty cool looking (and really unique/diverse!). I thought Toothless was cute--he acted like a big cat at times, and the part when he tries to imitate something Hiccup does is pretty fun! The parts that I enjoyed the most were the flying scenes, with Hiccup and Toothless darting between rocks and soaring into the sunset-colored sky.

This is definitely one to see, and I'm definitely planning to buy it.


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