Film:How To Train Your Dragon
Voices: Jay Baruchel, Gerard Butler
Direction: Chris Sanders and Dean DeBlois
This one’s a delight. A 3-D animated coming-of-age adventure, it’s set in a Viking village where dragons and Norsemen are enemies. There’s something scintillating here for the kiddies as well as the child that lurks in the heart of every viewer, aged 8 to 80. Culled from a popular British fantasy novel, How To Train Your Dragon hinges on the exploits of a wimpy teenager (Baruchel) who wants desperately to join the ranks of the dragon slayers. He gets his chance when he somehow manages to shoot one of the fire-breathing reptiles out of the sky. But unlike the other Vikings, including his fearsome father (Butler), he cannot bring himself to kill the winged beast.
Rather, he befriends the wounded creature, tends to his injuries and lets him loose. They eventually join forces to combat a common enemy and restore peace to the land. The moral of the fable is the need for understanding, compassion and trust in each other.
The colours and the characters are captivating. The distinguished voice cast gives endearing performances. Their enjoyment of playing the Vikings is infectious. Tellingly, the dragon does not speak at all, instead conveying his feelings with his expressive cat-like eyes. The highlights are the splendid aerial sequences with the boy soaring across the sky astride his dragon. That’s entertainment, all right.