REVIEW: ‘How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World’



Graphic created by Genevieve Guenther.

Jonathan Montague, Staff Writer

It is amazing how many franchises seem to be reaching climactic endings this year. The Marvel Cinematic Universe will end their big story arc with “Avengers: Endgame” next month. “Game of Thrones” will start its final season this April as well. Now, we have the end to the nine-year-long “How to Train Your Dragon” saga with their third and final installment, “The Hidden World.” Can you believe that it has been nearly 10 years since the first one, and that these movies are still this good after all that time?

The film opens on Hiccup and Toothless as they are straddling the fine line between protecting the dragons and leading Berk. Facing overpopulation and daily danger, they are soon presented with their greatest challenge yet, as the infamous dragon hunter, Grimmel the Grisly, sets his eyes on Berk and, in particular, the last Night Fury. Or is he? Because our heroes also come across a Light Fury, a potential mate for Toothless and a guide the dragon’s Hidden World, which may hold the key to Berk’s salvation.

Just like all the other films, the narrative is a little predictable and a story you may have heard before. Also like the other films, this film elevates that with some neat twists and really lovable characters. Grimmel makes a very fun and different villain from the previous films.  There was a comedic subplot that I personally felt did not really land, but there is plenty of really good comedy that others may find funny where I did not.

Something I found weird was that this film felt like things were happening faster towards the end of the film; not so much that the pacing was bad, but it was enough to be noticeable. That does not stop you from getting teary-eyed at the inevitable denouement.

The visuals in this movie are, of course, stunning, and the flight scenes are incredible to watch. This level of animation is nothing new to this franchise and neither is the fact that John Powell’s score is great to listen to. The voice acting is also incredible, including the best turn from Jay Baruchel as Hiccup.

While I still think the second movie is the best of the trilogy, I really enjoyed “How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World” with its breathtaking visuals, good comedy and entertaining characters, as well as an ending that will touch the heart of every viewer. It serves as a beautiful ending to one of the greatest trilogies of animated films ever made, and I will die on that hill!