Animation directors Dean DeBlois and Chris Sanders have fashioned a family entertainment that functions as a copy of James Cameron’s most successful film of all time. It’s got the young hero from a war-bred culture who joins sides with the “enemy;” it’s got romance (only here, he’s the chief’s offspring); it’s got an at-first-untrainable dragon that he bonds with, taming it as they take to the skies; it’s dazzlingly presented in 3-D.
It’s also better than Avatar. Hiccup (voiced by Jay Baruchel), the hapless hero, is a scrawny Viking, a dragon hunter-in-training. And he’s terrible at it, an embarrassment to his warrior father, Stoick (Gerard Butler). Toothless, Hiccup’s cat-like dragon steed, shares DNA with the alien in the directors’ Lilo & Stitch, and their new film seems cloned from that movie, as well, as a youth secretly fosters a lethal beast.
But this one’s a real beauty.
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