The word “bittersweet” has been associated with the description of this feature and rightly so because this is the final chapter of a beautifully done franchise. Hiccup and his trusty Night Fury Toothless soar and roar one last time in the stunning animated spectacle, How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World.
A year after Hiccup takes up his late father’s mantle as chief of Berk, he and his fellow dragon riders set out to create a peaceful dragon-human utopia on their home, but the notorious Grimmel, a brilliant and methodical dragon hunter, renowned for killing Night Furies, threatens to upend everything Hiccup and Toothless have fought so hard to create and protect. A solution to their dilemma may lie in a female dragon called a Light Fury, who Toothless is instantly drawn to, who may hold the key to the Hidden World, a hidden realm that is home to all dragons.
A plot that is layered and ripe with coming-of-age tropes and animation that is gorgeous as you can imagine, how can How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World not be a complete winner? Dean DeBlois sent this excellent franchise out of one hell of a high note and I could not be more satisfied with how this movie was executed and how well this franchise came full circle!
Back in 2010, I went into the original How to Train Your Dragon with low expectations, only to come out blown away. How to Train Your Dragon 2 was a worthy successor that did not let me down and now The Hidden World lived up to both films and the culmination of all three movies weaves a flowing and impeccably crafted story about a friendship that changed a world and I believe Cressida Cowell and DreamWorks should be very proud of the success of this franchise.
The greatest aspect about this movie is that ultimately, you know where and what it leads up to but you can’t help but enjoy the ride and watch the two central characters continue to come into their own and just take in the splendor of the world around them and it is bittersweet but also a satisfying experience that fans of this franchise will never forget! DeBlois truly wrote and directed a stunning final conclusion to a very special franchise that he and executive producer Chris Sanders started.
I love the cast of actors who lent their voices to this movie and the movies that came before. Jay Baruchel, America Ferrera, Gerard Butler, Jonah Hill, Kristen Wiig, Justin Ruppel, Craig Ferguson, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Cate Blanchett, Kit Harrington, F. Murray Abraham, I love the dimension these actors brought to these characters.
The technical skill that went into this movie is nothing short of excellent. The animation is phenomenal, John Powell’s music is superb, Gil Zimmerman’s cinematography is invigorating, John Karr’s editing is top-notch, Pierre-Oliver Vincent’s production design is incredible, the artwork, the visual effects, the sound are all breathtaking, everything that went into this movie was not wasted in the slightest!
It’s tough saying goodbye to a franchise that has delivered every single time a new chapter was released and characters who you can’t help but love but all great things come to an end. Hiccup, Toothless, the training was worth it! How to Train Your Dragon was an exhilarating ride and The Hidden World was an outstanding way to bring this trilogy to a close. Well done!