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The thrilling second chapter of the epic How To Train Your Dragon trilogy brings back the fantastical world of Hiccup and Toothless five years later. While Astrid, Snotlout 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.
The original How to Train Your Dragon was Dreamworks only truly great animated film meaning any sequel would be approached with equal parts excitement and trepidation. First time around I was utterly captivated by the relationship between a gawky viking boy and his adorable dragon companion but how could a second film possibly replicate the same intimate relationship and sparkling chemistry? Wisely it doesn’t. Although the friendship between Hiccup and Toothless remains a crucial element, the film is bigger, bolder and darker as it expands upon the viking-dragon universe.
Dean DeBlois - taking over sole directing duties for the first time - follows the Empire Strikes Back template for movie sequels. This is still very much the same world and…
I loved part 1, was absolutely bowled over by part 2. And that just doesn't happen very often.
Beautifully expanding on the foundation lain in the first film, part 2 is an adventure that has the guts to take on a darker tone when the story requires it, without ever compromising on its rollercoaster ride nature. It's fun, funny, epic and gripping, not something many feature films can pull off.
The animation is, once again, outstanding. Crisp, vibrant and creative, the character and dragon design will make you wish you had an extra set of eyes just to take in every single detail. What I found very impressive was the way director DeBlois managed to keep the often frenetic action…
I entered the cinema today to see How to Train Your Dragon 2 with seemingly impossible expectations, holding the first installment in my heart as one of the finest achievements in animation, and anything less than the same level of storytelling, emotional resonance and fun would have been a disappointment. In fact, its fair to say I expected an even better film than the first because as Hiccup and Toothless get older, I wanted the films to mature along with them, much like the progression of the Harry Potter series.
Typically when I sit down in a theater expecting this level of greatness, I inevitably exit feeling a tad disappointed because what I envisioned in my mind isn't fully realized…
In the summer of 2010, DreamWorks Animation released their finest feature in the form of How To Train Your Dragon which surprised everyone with its remarkable balance between story & animation elements and remains a rollicking adventure for all ages. Surfacing 4 years later amidst enormous hype is How To Train Your Dragon 2 and how does it fare in comparison to its predecessor? Let's find out.
Set 5 years after the events of the previous film, How To Train Your Dragon 2 continues the expedition of Hiccup & his pet dragon, Toothless, as they embark on a new journey to discover & map unexplored lands & territories. But when they come across a secret ice cave that is home to hundreds of new…
"And with Vikings on the backs of dragons, the world just got a whole lot bigger."
Sequels are tricky. They involve a careful balance of using material developed in previous installments to explore new areas rather than doing the same thing over again. This delicate situation is difficult enough from a writing standpoint as it is, and is further exacerbated by the fact that the producers financing the picture probably just wants more of the same. It's no mystery that Hollywood has had a hard time with this in recent years, with films like 22 Jump Street and Muppets Most Wanted satirizing studios' lack of creative energy this year alone. But despite being a big budget summer sequel, How to…
FIRE & BLOOD
Thanks TajLV to comment on my review
I supposed to have delivered 2 weeks ago, but.... :
Mostly of the The details of the art work; from the jug of water overflowing the liquid on the brown skin of this canteen , or not only just that but like when green mountains of ice explode in battle between dragons and humans, multiple pieces explore and flood the battlefield in the snow throughout the projection of a battle next to a epic level, is to give these remarkable examples of how the scenery is assembled and matured with time, and not only that but also the skin and people mature; and also Stoic, The Vast thick beards with white…
Now that we finally have a film exclusively written and directed by Dean DeBlois, it's clear to see he's a much stronger director than he is a writer.
There's many times when his script feels obviously written and it sometimes feels like he's scrambled to put together a larger world for this series.
But boy, is he a strong director.
Dragon 2 feels more headstrong and sure of itself than its predecessor, reinforced in great part by its grand and evocative photography.
This is a damn beautiful film in many ways, and a visually smart one as well.
I STILL WANT MY OWN TOOTHLESS!
Funnier and more emotionally resonant than the original. Ever since the first couple Shrek movies Dreamworks has released some pretty bad movies (especially when you consider the fact that their most relevant competition is fuckin' Pixar) but when they release a good movie it's really, really good.
It's good, but I prefer the first one entirely. I like that it tried to expand the world within the Dragon World, but I felt like Dean DeBlois tried to cram in too many ideas, and because of that, the film didn't work for me. I also didn't feel emotionally connected to this film, unlike the first one, which I did immensely.
There isn't so much anything wrong with the How to Train Your Dragon movies outside of the solidly mediocre voice cast (my general dislike of Jay Baruchel includes his voice, it seems) and some typically ugly DreamWorks character design (the model for Hiccup's mother is completely dysfunctional for conveying emotion). Those are relatively minor issues. These movies are fine. But whatever the case, I've just never gotten very excited about anything in this franchise, and that goes doubly for this second entry, which trades the endearing boy-and-his-dog story for more epic, less-resonant battle-centric territory. I like the sweetness embedded in the movie's relationships, be it Hiccup with his mother, his dragon, or his friends (and the brief but poignant scenes…
I loved this until the ending.
There is no movie cliche I DESPISE more than the "brainwashed friend being convinced they can break free of whatever is controlling them" cliche. It honestly ruins movies for me.
I would write off How to Train Your Dragon 2 if the first 2 acts weren't as strong and well composed as they are.
More like How to Break Your Fucking Heart
How to Train Your Dragon 2 knows that expanding is better than rehashing. Was NOT expecting this to be as amazing as it was! Stands in the ranks of the best sequels (Back to the Future 2, Toy Story 2, Two Towers, etc.). One of the most vibrant, impressively animated films I've seen.
Toothless, the animated cat-dragon has more personality than most live-action actors I see nowadays.
"Men who kill without reason cannot be reasoned with." – Stoick
This line could've set up a truly good animated villain (a rarity) but unfortunately Drago never gets fully realized. Now, he does prove his level of threat but I wish they could've really made this about Drago and Hiccup's two drastically different approaches to dragon handling. It would've made for an awesome clash.
But I still really liked this movie. Very entertaining, I love Hiccup's new gadgets and his growth in this story (although Jay Baruchel doesn't hit every line well), and wow I was super impressed with the animation. I always expect Pixar to have top notch animation and for me, Dreamworks is right up there with them in this movie. From the very first scene I felt like I was actually in "Berk." Which is one of the best things any movie can do.
My favorite animated series elevates with it's own Empire which matures the material while also increasing the quality.
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Note: some films were reviewed twice, once at a film festival and then were…
Every film that has ever been nominated for an Academy Award in any category. Enjoy!