It has been a year since Hiccup (Jay Baruchel) and the Dragon Riders defeated Drago Bludvist, and in that time Berk has become rather overcrowded. In an effort to save the human/dragon utopia, Hiccup goes in search of the Hidden World, a place where dragons can exist in peace, safe from from the hunters who seek to enslave them. But the actions of the Berkians have drawn the attention of Bludvist's old allies, who hire Grimmel the Grisly (F. Murray Abraham) - an infamous dragon hunter - to steal the dragons for their army. Now, Hiccup must decide whether humans and dragons can really live together peacefully, in order to do what's right for his old buddy Toothless, and all of the dragons.
The third and final movie in the 'How To Train Your Dragon' franchise has arrived, and what an emotional rollercoaster it is. Dean DeBlois and his team really have gone out with a bang on this one. All three movies have cleverly pushed audiences through the emotional ringer, but the fact that this is the final chapter gives 'The Hidden World' extra weight. As usual it is a joy to see the relationships between the humans and their dragons - something that's incredibly relatable, especially if you're an animal lover. The scene stealers are of course Hiccup and Toothless, an inseparable pair that truly reflect the joy of having animals in our lives and their ability to become part of the family. Hiccup has done a lot of growing up over the course of three movies, and this time round he has to make some difficult decisions both as Chief and as a friend. The burden of which is reflected in Baruchel's well-rounded performance.
The thing I like about these movies is that they never feel repetitive. As our heroes grow and develop, so do their adventures, and this one challenges them like never before. Especially Hiccup, who now bears the responsibility of leader, as well as warrior and dragon owner. Without a home to fall back on like before, the people of Berk must attempt to protect their dragons whilst on the run and hunting for a new place to live. But even with the high stakes and sinister villain, The Hidden World is still a lot of fun, not to mention hilarious. On top of everything else, Hiccup also has to deal with the fact that Toothless has made a new friend, the mysterious "Light Fury". If you thought Toothless was soppy before, you haven't seen nothing yet!
These movies represent the best in what DreamWorks Animation can do. Over the course of the trilogy we've seen the technology develop, and it never ceases to amaze. The dragons and the world they inhabit look more vibrant with every instalment. And this is something that definitely peaks with The Hidden World, as Astrid and Hiccup journey through - oddly enough - the Hidden World. This incredible place is a spectacular sight, something that will no doubt leave audiences - both young and old - with a sense of awe and wonder.
It's great to see Astrid (America Ferrera) and Hiccup grow as they go from the young vikings to the leaders and defenders of their people. Not only that, seeing their relationship develop and how they make each other better. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for some of the supporting cast. After three movies of Snotlout, Ruffnut and Tuffnut being annoyingly stupid, it really is wearing thin. What may have started out as funny, has more than run its course. Granted this movie is meant for people of all ages, so there has to be something in it for kids, but this is just the same joke recycled three times over. On the bright side we do get a sinister villain in the form of F. Murray Abraham's Grimmel the Grisly, someone who has a particular interest in Toothless. Whereas Bludvist was very angry, Grimmel is more subtle, more calculating. He enjoys the hunt, savours it even, and this in many ways makes him more threatening than anything the Berkians have faced before.
How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World is a heartwarming story of friendship and doing what's right by them, one that marks a fitting end to a wonderful trilogy. With loveable characters brought to life by a brilliant cast and some stunning animation, it's an adventure you and your family will undoubtedly want to enjoy again and again.
What did you think of How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World? Let us know by leaving a comment below or find us on Facebook and Twitter. You can also email us at firstname.lastname@example.org