How To Train Your Dragon 2

Director Dean DuBlois working with author Cressida Crowell ("How To Train Your Dragon" book series) has created a nice PG-rated sequel to their phenomenally successful earlier outing. They have managed to book much of the same talent while adding new voices where needed.

As we already know, five years ago a young Viking boy Hiccup and his pet dragon Toothless, united dragons and Vikings on their island. This has changed the society of Berk: now the old bunch of friends hold dragon races while our hero and his dragon set out to chart new territory and draw maps of the known world. They find a secret ice cave and our story begins.

Here is the cast:
  • Jay Baruchel ("How To Train Your Dragon") is Hiccup, motherless son of a king, still trying to promote peace, not war. His dragon Toothless still sports that repaired tail, do you remember when that was done?
  • Cate Blanchett ("Blue Jasmine") is Valka, whom Hiccup discovers in that ice cave. What he finds out about Dragon Rider is a big surprise!
  • Gerard Butler ("How To Train Your Dragon") is Hiccup's father, Stoick, now proud of his son, who didn't turn out at all like he expected.
  • Craig Ferguson ("How To Train Your Dragon") is Gobber, a goodhearted sidekick to the king.
  • America Ferrera ("How To Train Your Dragon") is Astrid, still fearless and feminine, all at the same time.
  • Djimon Hounsou ("Baggage Claim") is Draco, a fierce dragon hunter who intends to rule them all!
Of course we still have the usual suspects as our hero's friends, but the star here is the Computer Generated Imaging, which allows the little 'uns in the audience to experience the sensations of flight. I looked around and every child was transfixed; this was probably just like their dreams. In addition, the ability of the animators to convey subtle emotions is amazing; they get better and better.

I'll be the first to admit I don't remember when or how Hiccup lost his leg, but he clearly has a prosthesis and there is NO comment made about it. Did I watch the first one carelessly? Hmmm...
* * * * * * * * * * * *
Here is what it looks like:
* * * * * * * * * * * *