Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Review: How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World

Release date: February 22, 2019
Running time: 104 minutes
Starring: Jay Baruchel, America Ferrera, Cate Blanchett

It's crazy to think that How to Train Your Dragon is nine years old!  The third (and if the filmmakers are to be believed final) movie in the How to Train Your Dragon trilogy builds off of what happened in the previous two.  Hiccup and Toothless are faced with multiple dilemmas: a new dragon is discovered that has them both distracted and a new enemy rises that threatens everything that they have worked so hard to build.

As with any animated movie, the first focus is on the animation itself.  And thankfully, How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World delivers in that department.  The HTTYD universe is full of different types of unique dragons, and they are all beautifully animated.  Additionally, for this film the dragon riders have been given new equipment and armor inspired by the various dragons.  The detail is immense, with visible individual scales on the armor and hair that moves with the wind.  And as with any dragon movie, the flying is spectacular with little details like realistically rendered clouds that react to the environment being a noticeable surprise. 

This is a kids movie, so the story doesn't have to make complete sense.  But this story is pretty bad.  That is fine because the characters that experience that story and the accompanying action are great, but the story itself seems to just push characters into convenient locations and encounters without any real reason why.  That being said, it does have a surprisingly satisfying ending and one that is a great capping point for this film franchise.  Additionally, some of the characters are just plain annoying, but again, as a kids movie this is to be expected.  

How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World is a beautifully animated movie that continues and concludes the story from the first two films.  It is fun to watch, despite its less than stellar story, and provides a fitting end to this high flying trilogy.

Watch it

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