Training dragons great holiday treat
How To Train Your Dragon 2 (2-D)
Remember that feeling of returning to a much-loved holiday spot? Piling out of the family car in a jumble of beach balls, lilos and tennis rackets, the sun baking your shoulders and nothing between you and sheer bliss but miles of golden sand?
It’s been a few years, four in fact, since we were first introduced to the mythical land of Berk in How To Train Your Dragon (2010), but getting to return there in the much-anticipated sequel feels a lot like that. An absolute delight.
Viking princeling Hiccup ( voiced by Jay Baruchel) and Toothless, his beloved Night Fury dragon, have been dodging their soon- to- be- chiefly duties, exploring the lands of Berk. While on their adventures they discover dragon trappers gathering the animals for Drago (Djimon Hounsou), a brutal warlord set on building an unstoppable dragon army.
Determined to talk Drago out of his blood-lust, as he did with his own clan, Hiccup races to convince Drago peaceful co-habitation with the dragons is possible.
But his plans change when he meets someone unexpected from his past with the knowledge to change his future.
There is something undeniably heart-warming about the dragonfilled Berk.
The rustic world where Viking bravado joyfully collides with Celtic mythology, based on the books by Cressida Cowell, is both charming and exciting. This second instalment in the franchise explores Berk, and Hiccup and Toothless’s bond, further, giving us a sense of a much richer and broader universe than we’d seen before.
The sweeping misty vistas and endless rugged coastlines that lure Hiccup away from home and hearth – perfectly rendered in Dreamworks’ faultless animation – are enough to give anyone wanderlust.
The animation is no less vigorous and expressive when it comes to the characters.
With his unique blend of compassion, nonconformity and deeply held principles, Hiccup is everything you could want in a children’s hero.
rumbling, bumbling voice, and the fact he’s grown up with the film’s audience – he sports a little post-puberty scruff on his cheeks these days – Hiccup is very real.
So much so that, when he finally faces down the mighty Drago and his convictions are tested in the most heartbreaking way, it’s genuinely moving.
If it sounds a little too rich for some younger viewers, it might be. Drago and his army are quite horrifying and the beloved dragons are in peril often, so caution is advised for sensitive littlies.
Still, there aren’t many better ways to spend a rainy school holiday afternoon than visiting with dear friends in wondrous Berk.
Dragons are playful, so don’t forget the beach ball.
Hero with heart: Hiccup and Toothless soar straight back into our hearts in the wonderful How To Train Your Dragon 2.