How to Train Your Dragon (2010)
As the son of a Viking leader on the cusp of manhood, shy Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III faces a rite of passage: he must kill a dragon to prove his warrior mettle. But after downing a feared dragon, he realizes that he no longer wants to destroy it, and instead befriends the beast – which he names Toothless – much to the chagrin of his warrior father.
I liked How to Train Your Dragon, but not as much as everyone else seemed to. Maybe it was just talked up too much. The animation is unique and the characters are interesting, but the story felt flat and I found myself checking the clock at times. This movie entertained me, but not as much as I thought it would.
Overall this film is fun and refreshing animated adventure that can be enjoyed by adults and kids alike. While this movie is moving and entertaining, it isn't perfect. Negatives The animation quality. This film looks like it was made in the early days of CG animation, which sounds passable until you realize that it was made in the same year as Toy Story 3. Spending more of the budget on animation could've added a lot more to the scenes that focused on the beauty of the landscapes and could've made the characters look more realistic. The supporting teenage characters. Because they barely got any screen time, their few lines were cliche and stereotypical, and their switch to Hiccup's way of thinking at the end seemed sudden and unsupported. This also seemed like a waist of some excellent actors like Jonah Hill and Kristen Wiig.Positives The pacing for the relationship between Toothless and Hiccup. This was excellent, and it allowed the audience to grow to love these two characters as they built a friendship with each other. It was believable and moving.The score; Especially Forbidden Friendship, Test Drive, and Romantic Flight. These were so original and imaginative, and kept the audience engaged and emotionally attached to the story.The voice acting for Hiccup. Although it gets some criticism, I personally think Jay Baruchi's voice fits Hiccup's character perfectly, and portrays an awkward boy who becomes both more confident and equally as terrified when he befriends Toothless. Overall, this movie isn't perfect. But it's one of the few non-Disney animated movies that takes you on an emotional journey. The characters- especially Toothless, Hiccup, and Astrid- are lovable and gain the sympathy of the audience with their exellent development. The climax is action packed but relied heavily on the characters' relationships with each other, and the emotional moment at the end was heart wrenching. All-in-all this film is fun and entertaining while also being refreshingly emotional, with a great story, exciting action, and lovable characters.
So in my review of The Prince of Egypt, I briefly mentioned how I adored the How to Train Your Dragon franchise. And... yeah I do. Today I am only talking about the first one, the second one is so amazing that it needs it's own review too.This 2010 DreamWorks film is one of the most beautiful 3D-animated movies I've ever seen. Amazing animation, first of all. It is very photo-realistic. I can get lost in the world it establishes so well. It's one of the best looking world I've ever seen, on par with Avatar (2009). The flying scenes especially make you feel you are flying with the dragons.The story is riddled with cliche's, HOWEVER this is one of the times when the writing, pacing, and characters are so well done that it makes me feel like I'm hearing the cliche's for the first time. The story follows the formula of Steven Spielberg's E.T. with Hiccup, the main character, hiding the seemingly monstrous but apparently harmless dragon Toothless from his father and other vikings, however I would argue it's done as good if not better than it. On a side note, the sequence after (SPOILER) Hiccup loses a leg and Toothless helps him is not only heartwarming in of itself, but it is reflective of earlier in the film where Hiccup helps Toothless with his broken tail to help him fly again.The characters are all memorable, understandable and likable, and that includes all the various dragons (I love you Toothless). On the subject of the dragons, this is one of the few movies I've ever seen that doesn't personify or anthropomorphize the dragons, but it treats them like they are ACTUAL animals, not monstrous beasts as the vikings in the film see them as first. Hiccup and Toothless, the main character and main dragon, are some of my favorite DreamWorks characters.This film is very emotionally investing, partially due to the writing as well as the tone of this movie, which knows when to be dramatic and funny at appropriate times.Overall, this film and the sequel (which I'll talk about another time) is fantastic and one of the few things that prevents DreamWorks from being a complete laughing stock the past decade.RATING:9/10
Awesome . Worth a watch !!! The characters were well placed.