Their have been a lot of films, books, and video games over the years that depict humans befriending dragons despite the world seeing them as a menace. Having recently seen the film, How to Train Your Dragon, I decided to give my thoughts on it.
As I'm sure you all know, it is an animated film by DreamWorks and features the voice acting of Jay Barlichel, Gerard Butler, Craig Ferguson, America Ferrera, and Jonah Hill. The plot revolves around Hiccup, son of a Viking clan leader, as he befriends a dragon named Toothless, despite the fact that his entire clan hunts and kill dragons.
On the positive side, the movie contained a heartwarming tale of a boy trying to befriend a wild animal while dealing with the pressures of his community with the perfect soundtrack mixed in. Gerard Butler and Craig Ferguson were both perfect fits for their part, Butler as Stoick the Viking clan leader and Ferguson as Gobber, the slightly insane dragon slayer teacher. There were a number of different dragons in this film, each with their own abilities and looks and I thought this was very creative. Some of the humor was entertaining, particularly with Gobber's dragon slaying training. And last, I thought the dragon Toothless was very entertaining in the way he constantly shifted from being a fierce wild animal to a loving pet, usually indicated by his eyes going from fierce reptilian looking to loving bug-eyed.
In spite of all this, there were quite a few flaws with this movie. First is the plot structure, as it’s been used a hundred times over, (watch the movie and you'll see what I mean). Then there are the dragons. While they were interestingly diverse, I couldn't get over how stupid most of them looked. I know it’s supposed to be a kid’s movie, but most of these dragons looked like they had birth defects or something. Last has to do with the lines and the voice acting. There were a lot of lines in it that were obviously meant to be funny but just weren’t. Last, Jay Barlichel just did a horrible job voicing Hiccup.
All around, I did like this movie and thought it was both heartwarming and entertaining. While it will never escape the shadow of Toy Story 3 it's still a good one so check it out if you have an hour and a half to spare.