Dragon trailer doesn’t do it justice

How To Train Your Dragon is the best family entertainment film since Monsters Inc – pure feel-good escapism. We all loved it, although as someone who has not read the books I have read some reviews warning that the film is very different and doesn’t live up to them (which means that obviously I now must read the whole series).

Hiccup and Astrid riding Toothless

Gratuitous Tennant quotient: David Tennant has been the narrator on the audiobooks of these stories, and in the movie he voices the (very) minor character Spitelout – here he narrates an “Introduction to Dragons“.

My one teeny weeny nitpick with this film is that Hiccup is meant to be the weediest Viking ever and Astrid a glorious Valkyrie, yet they’ve made her arms even punier than his, even though all the other fighting viking women are impressively muscular (there’s a sprinkling of spindly crones). Le sigh.


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Would it be too much for once for a boy to desire a girl who looked stronger than him? Or to show a big strong girl who could still develop a crush on a smaller and weaker boy because he’s marvellous in other ways? I guess it would.

Categories: arts & entertainment, fun & hobbies

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11 replies

  1. Ah thank you for the review. We will take our 5 yr old to see it then.

  2. blue, there are a few “ooh!” moment with dragons with big scary teeth, but nothing too harsh, and there’s lots of funny moments.

  3. I am utterly, utterly lost at the adorableness of the black dragon, since oh, hey, who doesn’t have fantasies of having a pet something that is that *cool*?
    I shamefully admit to buying a McDonald’s Happy Meal just for the dragon toy.
    I’m guessing that they justified making Astrid less strong-looking by saying “well, they’re both young, because our target audience is young, and they’ll relate, yeah, that’s it!”, completely bypassing the fact that girls start puberty a year or so before boys, and get taller and larger looking than them for a little bit. *sigh* Gotta throw that normativity in there no matter what.

  4. I really loved the movie. ❤
    I thought they handled the thing with him at the end pretty well for Hollywood. Don’t want to be to spoilery though.

    • IraeNicole, I thought they handled the thing with him at the end pretty well for Hollywood too. Very matter of fact, instead of the usual tragic or inspirational slant.

  5. Boy Viking: You take this shield. It has a flower on it. Girls like flowers!
    Twin Sister (takes shield and clobbers him on the head with it): *Now* it’s got blood on it!
    I also really loved what a total dick Astrid was. She didn’t do that cutesy, support-your-man princess crap *at all.* So refreshing!
    And, yeah, Toothless was insanely cute too.

  6. Astrid is pretty clearly a badass and much much stronger than Hiccup (or most of the other boys for that matter.) In fact, as we left, with my two sons, one of whom is a Heathen, we noted how nice it was to see the Vikings portrayed accurately with women going viking. And Astrid wasn’t digging Hiccup for his “manliness” in the end. Having two sons that I must counter act the predominant brainwashing about women, this was pretty great.

  7. My kids saw the movie on the weekend with their grandfather. My daughter (six) wasn’t overly thrilled but did enjoy it, but my son (four) loved it and is now obsessed with dragons. Me? I’m disappointed that I wasn’t the one to take them to the movies as I was looking forward to seeing it.

  8. Just heard from hubby that How to Train your Dragon is absolutely awesome. I think if someone handed hubby a ticket to go straight back in and watch it again he would. Apparently our son also enjoyed the movie.

    • Mindy, that was my reaction (Again! Again!) and it’s the first time in years that I’ve felt that way about a film.

  9. This is right up the top of our to do list, the kids and hubby have been talking about it in anticipation all week. According to Tom (aged 8) there’s one downside to the film, the Viking helmets are ALL WRONG. It seems we are breeding historical accuracy pedants – after spending the Easter weekend living in the dark ages Tom is very disappointed that there are horns on the helmets in the film and is threatening to write to the film studio to object 🙂

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