Monday, March 16, 2015

How to Train Your Dragon 2 (2014)

Number Rolled: N/A
Movie Name/Year: How to Train Your Dragon 2 (2014)
Genre: Children & Family
Length: 102 minutes
Rating: PG
Production Companies: DreamWorks Animation, Mad Hatter Entertainment
Executive Producer: Dean DeBlois, Chris Sanders, Kate Spencer
Director: Dean DeBlois
Writer: Dean DeBlois, Cressida Cowell
Actors: Jay Baruchel, Cate Blanchett, Gerard Butler, Craig Ferguson, America Ferrera, Jonah Hill, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, T.J. Miller, Kristen Wiig, Djimon Hounsou, Kit Harington, Kieron Elliott, Philip McGrade, Andrew Ableson, Gideon Emery, Simon Kassianides, Randy Thom

Hiccup is older now and his bond with Toothless is stronger than ever. Although the land of Burke now accepts dragons, and even loves them, Hiccup believes there’s more to find beyond the area. So he and the Night Fury leave town often to map unknown areas looking for something new.

I loved How to Train Your Dragon. Needless to say, when it was time to do the “Top Ten Movies to Look Out For” in June of 2014, How to Train Your Dragon 2 had to be number one on the list. That’s why I didn’t bother rolling this week. I found out it hit Netflix and nothing was going to stop me from watching it.

When I posted my “Top Ten” article to Reddit, someone told me they didn’t understand the hype that came with the film. He wanted to know why the movie made any difference at all.

I was happy to tell him. [ Minor Spoilers for the first movie ahead ]

“For me, How to Train Your Dragon stuck because it was different. True, there was a bit of a typical happy ending, but it wasn't absolute. In a world where cartoons teach that love conquers all and Cinderella always gets her prince, movies that steer away from the norm are beginning to get more attention. With How to Train Your Dragon, the ending is happy, but there's also bitterness. The hero pays a price. It's the same reason I love Frozen. The ending is happy, but the prince isn't the savior. In fact, it's not even romance in the end.

How to Train Your Dragon was unbelievably cute with the addition of having an interesting life lesson thrown in the mix. It helps that the life lesson is subtle, because it isn't always. In Wall-E, for example, the main characters are just as adorable, but the social commentary is so in your face that it's a little overbearing.”

Of course, when you love a movie that much and a sequel comes out, there is a certain amount of anxiety that comes with it.

Sequels can wind up being just as terrible as the first movie was great. The director changes and the production company works to squeeze every last dime from the franchise. You know that quote, “you either die a hero or live long enough to see yourself become a villain?” It stands true.

I was looking forward to seeing if the franchise would remain on the side of the hero or turn to something very wrong.

I’m happy to report that How to Train Your Dragon 2 was awesome. It was just as good as the first one was. The graphics were updated to remain with the times and the storyline was outstanding. It had dark moments that combated the lightness of the animation, but it never strayed too far away from the children & family label.

There is nothing bad I can say about this film. I loved every second of it and I will wait with anticipation until the third movie comes out in 2018.

Rotten Tomatoes Critic Score – 92%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score – 90%

Netflix’s Prediction for Me – 5/5
Trust-the-Dice Score5/5

P.S. Artwork from the movie during the credits.

Movie Trailer:

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