The thrilling second chapter of the epic HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON trilogy brings us back to the fantastical world of Hiccup and Toothless five years after the two have successfully united dragons and vikings on the island of Berk. While Astrid, Snoutlout and the rest of the gang are challenging each other to dragon races (the...more
The thrilling second chapter of the epic HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON trilogy brings us back to the fantastical world of Hiccup and Toothless five years after the two have successfully united dragons and vikings on the island of Berk. While Astrid, Snoutlout and the rest of the gang are challenging each other to dragon races (the island's new favorite contact sport), the now inseparable pair journey through the skies, charting unmapped territories and exploring new worlds. When one of their adventures leads to the discovery of a secret ice cave that is home to hundreds of new wild dragons and the mysterious Dragon Rider, the two friends find themselves at the center of a battle to protect the peace. Now, Hiccup and Toothless must unite to stand up for what they believe while recognizing that only together do they have the power to change the future of both men and dragons. less
“Spectacular animation and an emotional story makes How To Train Your Dragon 2 an exciting ride. Nearly as good as the first film, the sequel is a must watch for kids and adults alike.”
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Watching How to Train your Dragon 2 made me wonder how far animation films have come, not just in terms of technique or skill but in terms of who is watching them and how the content is tailored accordingly. An animation film that has lusty hormones messing with the head and a funeral reminding one of GOT's episodes is indeed a far cry from the sweet and innocent Bambi's of yore. HTTYD2, much like its predeccessor, breaks a lot of new ground, relinquishing some of its original charm for the sake of giving you a sweeping epic.
Hiccup is all grown up, the vikings are now friends with the dragons, and all is at peace. Until appears on the horizon Drago, the man with the dragon army who wants everything burnt down to ashes cause it is fun. Hiccup is left to deal with him, hypnotized dragons, including his pet who turn on the good people, two very godzilla like monsters fighting, and a reunion with his mother Valka. A lot happens before the good prevails and peace returns, all of it not necessarily good, yet rivettingly entertaining.
Hiccup in this edition is a boy on the cusp of adulthood. While the first part saw him emerge the do gooder with the message of essentiality of being the good one, we see him evolve into a more complex adult whose choices are difficult and to make them he needs to become a better person. The only glitch here is that this transformation and the message inherent are shoddily put across. For most part Hiccup is either talking Rahul Gandhily about talking to Drago to back off, or flying on his dragon in shots that remind you of spectacular roller coasters.
The dragons too are reduced to being pets, marginally redeemed from being complete dog like in their reverance to the human care taker. There are humungously many dragons this time round, as we see them spew fire, and ice, and live in a pandora like magical cave that provides for some of the most visually stunning peices of the film. Apart from the amazingly done swooshing across the skies part that is.
Valka, Hiccups mother is the other scene stealing act here, her equation with Hiccup, their reunion make for the most emotionally invested portions of the story. Sadly, what happens next in the story is not as strong enough, especially the climatic fight. Resultant , we loose the conenct, the charm of little things that tugged at the heart in the first part. Instead what we have are grandiose scenes set to clearly deliver a 3D extravaganza.
Technically the film looks rich and gives a bang for the buck in Imax version. The 3D is beautifull, cleverly accentuating the action and spectacle being attempted at in the film. The voices, especially Cate as the fiesty Valka, are superb and it is easy to fall in love with the ensemble cast we see. Valka's vigilante character in itself is a brilliant addition to the franchise who will most expectedly have an even stronger part to play in the planned thrid edition.
The only complaint though is that there is not enough meat in the story in comparison. The bad guy gets vanquished too easily, both the human kind and especially the dragon kind. The resolutions offered are rushed into towards the end. The central theme of being a better person gets short shrifted somewhere.
There is a lot of fun to be had in HTTYD2. The earlier charm is lessened a bit, but that should not stop you from having a good time. Take the kids along, they would love it too.