First off, a HUGE ‘Thank You” to 20th Century Fox for inviting my family and I out for an exclusive invite to a pre-screening of How To Train Your Dragon 2 earlier this week. Second, if you liked How To Train Your Dragon, you’ll love How To Train Your Dragon 2! I will warn you… if you have half a heart, bring a box of tissues. This movie will make you cry.
Now that I have that out of the way, you guys are going to love this movie! The family and I were invited out to watch How To Train Your Dragon 2 in 3D earlier this week. The kids had known about the invite for about a week and were super excited! We were big fans of the original How To Train Your Dragon (Toothless stole my heart from the beginning) and spent the week watching various clips in preparation for round 2!
Both kids have been watching the trailer for days and asking “When are we going?” “What theater are we going to?” “Do we get to watch it in 3D?”
*warning* LAST CHANCE TO TURN AWAY *warning*
How To Train Your Dragon 2 is action packed from the beginning. The movie opens with dragon racing, flying sheep and a missing Hiccup. Rather than being “chief in training” as his father wants him to be, Hiccup and Toothless are off soaring the skies, perfecting Hiccup’s new found ability to fly and discovering new lands to explore. Exploration can be a dangerous forte, which Hiccup quickly learns as he happens upon a group of dragon trappers who try to take Toothless.
Smarter than your average dragon, Toothless won’t be taken and Hiccup learns of a far away dragon master and his plans to command a dragon army. Disobeying his father’s will and taking matters into his own hands, Hiccup goes on the hunt for this so called dragon master and seeks to reason with him. While Hiccup doesn’t find what he’s looking for (at least initially), he does find something he never imagined… his mother. After meeting mom, it’s clear to see where Hiccup gets his dragon loving ways.
It’s not long before the dragon master finds Hiccup and his reunited family. With power over the alpha, the dragon master controls all the dragons – even Toothless. This is where it gets sad… tragic death… and at the hands (er… claws?) of Toothless. My heart shattered. In his heartache, Hiccup can’t see clearly and blames Toothless for the loss of his father, driving him away.
Clearly pained by what he’s done, Toothless puts his life on the line to protect Hiccup, his family and all of Berk from the dragon master and his command over the alpha. Toothless, the small, sweet Night Fury, rises up to challenge the alpha in an epic battle – one that it appears he has no hope to win. Of course, just as it looks like the battle is lost, Toothless pulls everything he has together to defeat the alpha. Just as Toothless rises to protect what’s important to him, so does Hiccup as he steps up to lead the village.
How To Train Your Dragon 2 is full of life lessons for kids of all ages, though my recommendation would be that this movie is best suited for children 4 and up. Be prepared to discuss separation, death, hurt and anger, as all are present at one point or another. If your child is simply fascinated by dragons, they may completely gloss over these parts. Though all of those are present, there is also a huge undercurrent through out the movie of love and forgiveness – life lessons that we all need to be reminded of from time to time.
Overall, we give How To Train Your Dragon 2 an A+ rating! We’re also excited of the prospect of a How To Train Your Dragon 3 and what adventures might lie in store for Hiccup, Toothless and the rest of the Berk dragon riders!