'How to Train Your Dragon - The Hidden World' review: Monsters and men

Toothless tales: The film enthrals all

Toothless tales: The film enthrals all  

The final instalment of the How to Train Your Dragon series bids Toothless a befitting farewell

In 2010, Dreamworks Animation gave the world, what is arguably the most heart-tugging character in animation history. Very few creatures (2002’s Stitch comes close) could compare to Toothless the dragon’s massive emotive eyes and ears, goofy puppy-like antics and adorable rumbling growls. Through three films, writer and director Dean DeBlois has brilliantly crafted a heart-warming bond between man and his dragon.

How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World
  • Director: Dean DeBlois
  • Cast: (Voices of) Jay Baruchel, America Ferrera, Cate Blanchett, Craig Ferguson, F. Murray Abraham
  • Storyline: When the harmony between man and dragon is threatened on Berk, Hiccup must protect his people and pets

In the final instalment, How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World, humans have overcome their bigotry. People and dragons live in harmony on the Viking island Berk. Their home is ripping at the seams and yet, the islanders continue to intercept and rescue dragons from warlords transporting the beasts for nefarious activities. Berk’s paradise life is threatened by a dragon hunter, Grimmel the Grisly (F. Murray Abraham) who’s intent on killing the last Night Fury in existence: Toothless. He’ll do anything to protect mankind who in his gloriously mistaken opinion deserve a dragon-free existence.

It’s a worthy metaphor for all the intolerance and discrimination all over the world today. Men with power continue to thrust their warped ideologies on people. It’s particularly heartening then to see Hiccup (Jay Baruchel) and his band of eccentric friends protect their way of life with everything they’ve got. These adult themes might not exactly resonate with the young ones. But they’ll definitely appreciate universal virtues such as tolerance, love and compassion to all, even supposedly lesser beings like animals.

In The Hidden World, Toothless finds love with a White Fury, a white dragon. His dorky attempts at wooing her can melt a stone. Berk’s Vikings continue to be comical, particularly Ruffnut (Kristen Wiig) and her fraternal brother Tuffnut (Justin Rupple). DeBlois’s Hidden World, (a utopia where all dragons can live without fear) is a psychedelic wet dream that doesn’t need an inebriated mind to be appreciated. The concluding chapter of the trilogy continues to enthral one and all, even those who’ve grown up since the first film. Incredibly, DeBlois doesn’t neglect the uninitiated, further extending the inclusive theme of his films. After three films — several television shows, short films and video games — Toothless and his pride of dragons get the rightful send-off they deserve: with immense love.

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Printable version | Feb 20, 2020 12:52:59 AM |

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