Staring: Jay Baruchel, Gerard Butler, Craig Ferguson, Cate Blanchett, America Ferrera, Jonah Hill, Kristen Wiig, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, T.J. Miller, Kit Harington, Djimon Hounsou
Directed by: Dean DeBlois
Written By: Dean DeBlois
How to Train Your Dragon was my absolute favorite movie from 2010, even beating out other great films like Toy Story 3 and Inception – yes, that’s how much I enjoy it! So how could writer/director Dean DeBlois possibly follow that? Well, being that I was at the San Diego Comic Con in 2013, and taking in the Dreamworks session, I got to hear directly from the horse’s mouth how he planned to follow the original classic. That session by the way also included some great extended clips from Dragon 2, and everyone in attendance was given a signed concept art print. It should be no surprise then when I tell you that session ended up being my favorite from the event, and I saw a lot of crazy cool stuff!
Anyway back to the movie. As it turns out, Mr DeBlois is no fool, and he understands what it takes to make a good sequel because he often spoke about one of the best sequels ever made, The Empire Strikes Back. Not a bad place to take your cues and using that great example, Dean DeBlois has crafted a great follow-up to Hiccup’s (Jay Baruchel) dragon training adventures.
As the little town of Berk evolved to understand and accept dragons in the first film. Being able to ride them and explore expands the scope of story telling possibilities within this universe, and Mr DeBlois takes full advantage of that. The sequel offers up new territory, characters and creatures, but it also delivers a somewhat intricate story about family, and finding ones place in life. Dragon 2 is also not without its surprises, and I was shocked and amazed at some of the darker themes this film explored.
If you enjoyed the first dragon training movie, I have no doubt you’ll enjoy this too. The story is a little more complex, which might occasionally lose younger audiences, but I still believe this film will appeal to the entire family. How to Train Your Dragon 2 is also a little darker in tone than its more playful original so keep that in mind.
It’s amazing to see how much technology has changed since 2010! Dragon 2’s graphics look sharper and more defined, and this is a big screen 3D or 2D showing all the way. At home a HD viewing on your big TV is recommended. Watching this on a Laptop, Tablet or phone would be a mistake.
Best Moment: << Spoiler! >>