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How to Train Your Dragon.

SpeedySwafSpeedySwaf Registered User
edited May 2010 in Debate and/or Discourse
This is about Dreamwork's latest animated movie

How_to_train_Your_Dragon_poster.jpg

which was (loosely) based on a book of the same title, and was directed by Chris Sanders. People may remember him for the last film he directed, Lilo & Stitch.

This thread was created so that people can post their impressions of the film, and also to provide some exposure since it deserves more attention then it's getting right now.

"Well that's not surprising, is it? It's Dreamworks."

Put that away. How to Train Your Dragon is quite a bit different from Dreamwork's other films. There are not a ton of pop culture references--very little, if any, actually--and is actually driven forward not by a string of gags or comedic pieces, but by the story and the characters present. The balance of story and humor is very similar to a Pixar film.

"Okay, but the commercials..."

Have been very misleading. There's a growing consensus that Dreamworks dropped the ball on marketing: there's been a lot of commercials and exposure, but they imply a very different film. The commercials are trying to sell it as a slap-stick comedy, with sound effects and voice clips scattered in a way to make it seem as such. While the movie does have humor, it's role is clearly secondary.

"Well, okay...so what's the story?"

The story is that on the island of Berk, located "a few degrees south of freezing to death," a village of vikings are constantly raided by swarms of dragons, stealing livestock and destroying homes. Our protagonist, Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III (we'll stick to Hiccup), is often looked down on in the village, despite being the son of the viking chief, Stoick the Vast. This is because he is by-and-large a wimp who can barely lift a weapon.

But one night he gets lucky and shoots down a dragon with a device he made, only to let it go once he finds it. What follows is a story of Hiccup trying to learn more about the dragon, which he calls Toothless, while at the same time trying to keep him a secret from the rest of the village.

The story, while not exactly unique (dragons and vikings aside) still provides for some quality entertainment. The characters are fun, distinct, and have some fun interactions with each other. Some of the best scenes in the film come from how Hiccup and Toothless bond with each other, with the latter being emotive despite the lack of a speaking role. Some very pretty visuals in the flight and action scenes also help.

"Alright, well I read the book. How does it stack up?"

A very good question, and one I can't really answer, having never read the book. But from what I've heard, it's vastly different from the original book (Toothless originally being small, green and actually toothless is just one difference), but can still stand on its own merits.

"And it is a good film, right?"

Absolutely! It's definitely one of Dreamworks' best films, and is probably one of the best animated films period. As of this writing it's got a 97% Fresh rating at RottenTomatoes, and a 73 at Metacritic.

So yeah, go watch it when you can. You won't regret it.

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SpeedySwaf on
«134

Posts

  • EndEnd Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    SpeedySwaf wrote: »
    Put that away. How to Train Your Dragon is quite a bit different from Dreamwork's other films. There are not a ton of pop culture references--very little, if any, actually--and is actually driven forward not by a string of gags or comedic pieces, but by the story and the characters present. The balance of story and humor is very similar to a Pixar film.

    :o

    This surprises me to hear.

    End on
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  • Muse Among MenMuse Among Men Suburban Bunny Princess? Its time for a new shtick Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    This was a good movie. Just don't watch it in 3d. The 3d looks nice, but my party left feeling off. It was me, my sister, two cousins, and parents (a birthday gift for one of the cousins). Mother and father both had head-aches coming out; my sister and female cousin both said their eyes felt 'sticky'. Personally, my vision felt a tad blurry and my eyes felt dry. Only the birthday boy felt fine.

    Personally I think this has been Dreamwork's best film.

    Muse Among Men on
  • KalTorakKalTorak Way up inside your butthole, Morty. WAAAAY up inside there.Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Dreamworks' reputation and the trailers for this movie left me wholly uninterested in seeing it. Then all these reviews and word-of-mouth came along, and now I really want to see it.

    Stupid marketing people.

    KalTorak on
  • Muse Among MenMuse Among Men Suburban Bunny Princess? Its time for a new shtick Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Hasn't their marketing served thm well in the past however?

    Muse Among Men on
  • chrono_travellerchrono_traveller Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    I have to admit that I bought into the idea that this was going to be another Shrek-esque string of pop-culture references until I read some reviews over the weekend. In particular, James Berardinelli gave it a good review, which is almost unheard of for a Dreamworks movie.

    I'm definitely gonna try and see this in theaters at some point.

    chrono_traveller on
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  • VeeVee Registered User
    edited March 2010
    I saw this the day it came out with my boyfriend and we both absolutely loved it. The first trailer I saw for it a while ago in theaters made it look interesting so I couldn't wait to see it. The tv ads have made it look like a different kind of movie though.

    Vee on
  • kildykildy Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    This was a really, really cute movie. I highly recommend it. Not the usual dreamworks fare, maybe they've finally figured out why everyone makes fun of them?

    It's got enough comedy to be amusing, and enough of it is adult-ish in nature that it'll keep you amused even without kids around. Plus, the leading dragon is so adorable that I was promptly sent on a quest to find the largest plush version in existence.

    kildy on
  • MelksterMelkster Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    This was a good movie. Just don't watch it in 3d. The 3d looks nice, but my party left feeling off. It was me, my sister, two cousins, and parents (a birthday gift for one of the cousins). Mother and father both had head-aches coming out; my sister and female cousin both said their eyes felt 'sticky'. Personally, my vision felt a tad blurry and my eyes felt dry. Only the birthday boy felt fine.

    Personally I think this has been Dreamwork's best film.

    I actually really enjoyed the 3D and thought it was actually some of the best 3D animation I've ever seen. It never tried to "pop" out of the screen, and some of the later scenes are absolutely phenomenal in 3D.
    You know, the thing that is really amazing when you see it in it's proper 3D scale.

    Melkster on
  • MelksterMelkster Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    And yeah, I'm glad you made a thread about this. Because I loved it. Alot. I personally found it to be of Pixar-level quality without just mimicking the rival studio. I liked it as much as my favorite Pixar movies.

    Hell, I liked it as much as my favorite movies. In fact, I'd say it's my favorite of 2010 so far. Possibly the most entertaining movie since Star Trek in 2009.

    Melkster on
  • ZombiemamboZombiemambo Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Vee wrote: »
    I saw this the day it came out and absolutely loved it! My boyfrie

    say what now

    Zombiemambo on
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  • darkgruedarkgrue Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Thread does not deliver. I have a dragon and need to train it. This thread is entirely devoid of training instruction.
    Melkster wrote: »
    I actually really enjoyed the 3D and thought it was actually some of the best 3D animation I've ever seen. It never tried to "pop" out of the screen, and some of the later scenes are absolutely phenomenal in 3D.

    I've heard this comment a lot about this movie (well, others too), and I'm curious. Is it because it's really good in 3D, or are people now more willing to go see 3D, and are only experiencing Real3D for the first time?

    Real3D doesn't inherently give the poke-your-eye-out 3D effect, and most of the movies aren't going out of their way to do those ridiculous contrived scenes (like throwing things towards the audience) specifically to show off the 3D effect. I've been going to all the movies offered in 3D (Ice Age, Bolt, Up!, Avatar, etc.) and I've noticed that they've been specifically avoiding pulling those stunts and doing what I've been calling "tasteful" 3D, which is a lot more subtle.

    I've really enjoyed the trailers, the movie looks quite clever and humorous, but it gives me pause that the consensus is that the trailers don't give the film the right characterization. I doubt very much I won't enjoy it either way, and I'm looking forward to seeing it, but I've been misled by trailers many times in the past, and it seems... unecessary to do anything other than play the trailers straight in this case. Makes you wonder what the marketing people are thinking.

    darkgrue on
  • hanzohanzo Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    I have to admit that I bought into the idea that this was going to be another Shrek-esque string of pop-culture references until I read some reviews over the weekend. In particular, James Berardinelli gave it a good review, which is almost unheard of for a Dreamworks movie.

    I have never been a big fan of DreamWorks movies and was initially hesitant about seeing this film. Luckily my wife convinced me to go see a matinee showing of it in 3D and it beat all of my expectations. As others have pointed out, it is not your typical DreamWorks movie.

    Plus it has Craig Ferguson as Gobber the Belch. How can you go wrong with a Scottish Viking teaching you how to fight dragons! :mrgreen:

    hanzo on
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  • VeeVee Registered User
    edited March 2010
    Vee wrote: »
    I saw this the day it came out and absolutely loved it! My boyfrie

    say what now

    sorry was posting from my phone and it did a weird double post thing.

    Vee on
  • LawndartLawndart Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    hanzo wrote: »
    I have to admit that I bought into the idea that this was going to be another Shrek-esque string of pop-culture references until I read some reviews over the weekend. In particular, James Berardinelli gave it a good review, which is almost unheard of for a Dreamworks movie.

    I have never been a big fan of DreamWorks movies and was initially hesitant about seeing this film. Luckily my wife convinced me to go see a matinee showing of it in 3D and it beat all of my expectations. As others have pointed out, it is not your typical DreamWorks movie.

    Plus it has Craig Ferguson as Gobber the Belch. How can you go wrong with a Scottish Viking teaching you how to fight dragons! :mrgreen:

    Before the good reviews came in, this was the only reason I wanted to watch this. Now it's just the main reason.

    And am I the only person who dislikes even the newfangled 3D? I saw Coraline in a 3D theater and ugh, the colors were so washed out that the 3D didn't make up for it at all.

    Lawndart on
  • Muse Among MenMuse Among Men Suburban Bunny Princess? Its time for a new shtick Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    I will avoid the 3d because of the after-effects. I ended up turning in early because my eyes were red and tired looking.

    Muse Among Men on
  • MelksterMelkster Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Lawndart wrote: »
    hanzo wrote: »
    I have to admit that I bought into the idea that this was going to be another Shrek-esque string of pop-culture references until I read some reviews over the weekend. In particular, James Berardinelli gave it a good review, which is almost unheard of for a Dreamworks movie.

    I have never been a big fan of DreamWorks movies and was initially hesitant about seeing this film. Luckily my wife convinced me to go see a matinee showing of it in 3D and it beat all of my expectations. As others have pointed out, it is not your typical DreamWorks movie.

    Plus it has Craig Ferguson as Gobber the Belch. How can you go wrong with a Scottish Viking teaching you how to fight dragons! :mrgreen:

    Before the good reviews came in, this was the only reason I wanted to watch this. Now it's just the main reason.

    And am I the only person who dislikes even the newfangled 3D? I saw Coraline in a 3D theater and ugh, the colors were so washed out that the 3D didn't make up for it at all.

    I'm not a huge fan of 3D at all, but it suits this movie amazingly well. Especially the last act. The last act in 3D is so good.

    Spoiler about said last act:
    No seriously, it's a spoiler of the movie stop clicking if you haven't seen it.
    The big giant dragon at the end, when it emerges it looks simply stunning, and the 3D effect actually plays an amazing role in illustrating that battle. It helps make the scenes where the dragon is in the background look especially startling.

    Melkster on
  • KastanjKastanj __BANNED USERS
    edited March 2010
    It's very different from previous Dreamworks movies, and this, of course, makes it very very good. It tries for more than entertainment and visuals, and actually goes for some emotional value and script-based amusement, together with a less gimmicky setting (the concept is in the title) and more contained pacing.

    Better than past Dreamworks movies I remember seeing. Better than Kung Fu Panda, just for starters.

    Kastanj on
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  • Orochi_RockmanOrochi_Rockman __BANNED USERS
    edited March 2010
    The movie was probably just based on good source material. I'd give more credit to the books for the film being good than to Dreamworks.

    Orochi_Rockman on
  • Alfred J. KwakAlfred J. Kwak Registered User
    edited March 2010
    Damn, I haven't heard much about the movie until I saw the score on RT, and now I absolutely have to watch it. Dragons, 3D, Dreamworks - it really does seem to be another cash-in movie, but then again, I also enjoyed Kung Fu Panda, so I guess I shouldn't be all that suprised.

    Alfred J. Kwak on
  • Lord PalingtonLord Palington Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Add another +1 to those who thought it might be okay but ended up really liking it. What people are saying about the ending in spoilers is true, they did an amazing job of keeping perspective up during the whole thing.

    Also the way they ended it was pretty ballsy for a children's movie, I thought.

    Only thing I wasn't a huge fan of was the main character voice acting. Ferguson was amazing, Butler did what he does best, and even Jonah Hill wasn't too annoying. Hiccup just never sounded emotionally invested in the film, coming across at best as sort of bored with it all. It was the worst with the line from the trailer, "Thanks for nothing, you worthless reptile."

    Other than that, our whole group (late 20s guys and gals) had a blast.

    Lord Palington on
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  • AvicusAvicus Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Lawndart wrote: »
    hanzo wrote: »
    I have to admit that I bought into the idea that this was going to be another Shrek-esque string of pop-culture references until I read some reviews over the weekend. In particular, James Berardinelli gave it a good review, which is almost unheard of for a Dreamworks movie.

    I have never been a big fan of DreamWorks movies and was initially hesitant about seeing this film. Luckily my wife convinced me to go see a matinee showing of it in 3D and it beat all of my expectations. As others have pointed out, it is not your typical DreamWorks movie.

    Plus it has Craig Ferguson as Gobber the Belch. How can you go wrong with a Scottish Viking teaching you how to fight dragons! :mrgreen:

    Before the good reviews came in, this was the only reason I wanted to watch this. Now it's just the main reason.

    And am I the only person who dislikes even the newfangled 3D? I saw Coraline in a 3D theater and ugh, the colors were so washed out that the 3D didn't make up for it at all.

    The main problem with 3D at the moment is that the glasses cut the amount of light in half. They need to get a special screen that reflects the light much more or it looks dull and the colors are not bright.

    Avicus on
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  • KyouguKyougu Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    I really want to watch this.

    I also don't want to look like a Pedo, since I would go see it by myself, so I'll have to wait till DVD.

    Kyougu on
  • chrono_travellerchrono_traveller Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Lawndart wrote: »
    hanzo wrote: »
    I have to admit that I bought into the idea that this was going to be another Shrek-esque string of pop-culture references until I read some reviews over the weekend. In particular, James Berardinelli gave it a good review, which is almost unheard of for a Dreamworks movie.

    I have never been a big fan of DreamWorks movies and was initially hesitant about seeing this film. Luckily my wife convinced me to go see a matinee showing of it in 3D and it beat all of my expectations. As others have pointed out, it is not your typical DreamWorks movie.

    Plus it has Craig Ferguson as Gobber the Belch. How can you go wrong with a Scottish Viking teaching you how to fight dragons! :mrgreen:

    Before the good reviews came in, this was the only reason I wanted to watch this. Now it's just the main reason.

    And am I the only person who dislikes even the newfangled 3D? I saw Coraline in a 3D theater and ugh, the colors were so washed out that the 3D didn't make up for it at all.

    I'm kinda surprised you singled out Coraline, because I thought that it was one of the better of the 3D movies in this new wave of them.

    chrono_traveller on
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  • The CatThe Cat Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited March 2010
    I loved this movie, and had no trouble with the 3D, although I accept that not everyone reacts the same to it (subtext: you freaks). That said, I think its one of those movies that wouldn't lose anything by not being in 3D.

    Re: Lord Palington's comment about the dialogue, I'll agree that I found the tone kind of variable. I know DW were trying not to be Shrek this time, but I don't think they quite got there. A lot of it was just a little too 'modern sitcom' in flavour.

    Add me in as someone looking for more artwork from the film. I want a Toothless desktop or something, but there's stuff-all online so far. The main character artist doesn't even have a website, which is a real shame. He did Kung Fu Panda as well.

    The Cat on
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  • MelksterMelkster Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Kyougu wrote: »
    I really want to watch this.

    I also don't want to look like a Pedo, since I would go see it by myself, so I'll have to wait till DVD.

    I saw it by myself. :x

    I don't think anyone seeing you watch this movie by yourself would think you're a pedophile. :P And if they do, they're ridiculous and you shouldn't care anyway.

    Melkster on
  • El FantasticoEl Fantastico Toronto, ONRegistered User regular
    edited March 2010
    The single dads showing up with their underage daughters look more like pedos than you would showing up without children, imo. You can't tell if those guys are really their dads, right?

    I loved this movie. It's a definitely first day purchase when it comes out on 3D blu-ray or whatever. I watched it in 3D and didn't feel like it detracted at all from the quality of the film.

    Speaking of voice actors though, is it just me, or is Jay Baruchel (Hiccup) becoming this year's "in everything" actor. There was one year when Seth Rogen was in everything, and Morgan Freeman is usually that guy. This year, JB is in so many movies, it's strange. Lesser known Canadian kid who I mostly remember as that guy who was on Popular Mechanics for Kids with Elisha Cuthbert.

    El Fantastico on
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  • Andrew_JayAndrew_Jay Registered User
    edited March 2010
    Sounds like I should have used my last free movie pass on this instead of Greenberg :(

    Andrew_Jay on
  • WassermeloneWassermelone Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    The movie was probably just based on good source material. I'd give more credit to the books for the film being good than to Dreamworks.

    Thats a rather silly goose thing of you to do.

    Plenty of great source material has been made into terrible movies. If its a good movie, give credit where credit is due... the source AND the people who made the movie.

    Wassermelone on
  • DacDac Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Saw it. Enjoyed it. The overall story is pretty standard, but is well executed, and there are a lot of good performances.

    Same as with Kung Fu Panda, I didn't think much of this movie from the previews, but I've learned from KFP, Cars, and Up! not to take previews for animated movies these days so seriously.

    Dac on
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  • Orochi_RockmanOrochi_Rockman __BANNED USERS
    edited March 2010
    The movie was probably just based on good source material. I'd give more credit to the books for the film being good than to Dreamworks.

    Thats a rather silly goose thing of you to do.

    Plenty of great source material has been made into terrible movies. If its a good movie, give credit where credit is due... the source AND the people who made the movie.

    Not when every other original story by Dreamworks proves otherwise. I don't think its that outrageous of a claim in this case in particular.

    Orochi_Rockman on
  • SipexSipex Registered User
    edited March 2010
    Recent Dreamworks movies and the previews kind of set the tone for this to 'meh' for me but now it sounds like it might just deliver. Definitely looking into this now.

    Sipex on
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  • WassermeloneWassermelone Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    The movie was probably just based on good source material. I'd give more credit to the books for the film being good than to Dreamworks.

    Thats a rather silly goose thing of you to do.

    Plenty of great source material has been made into terrible movies. If its a good movie, give credit where credit is due... the source AND the people who made the movie.

    Not when every other original story by Dreamworks proves otherwise. I don't think its that outrageous of a claim in this case in particular.

    So obviously everyone who worked on the movie had nothing to contribute to its quality. :rotate:

    I mean really. Fuck these guys.

    Wassermelone on
  • Orochi_RockmanOrochi_Rockman __BANNED USERS
    edited March 2010
    If any of them were responsible for Shark Tale, then yes. Fuck them. Really though, you are taking my comment way too seriously. Calm down.

    Orochi_Rockman on
  • Evil_ReaverEvil_Reaver Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Saw the standard non-3D version with my wife this weekend and we both loved it.

    There were so many idiot parents who brought toddlers to see it when we went. I guess they are of the mindset that it's automatically for super young children because it was animated. Needless to say, my wife and I were the only ones laughing through most of the movie because the kids just didn't get the jokes/references.

    Anyone who doesn't see this film is really missing out.

    Also,
    The giant king dragon exploding in a gigantic mushroom cloud was AWESOME.

    Evil_Reaver on
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  • MelksterMelkster Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    There were so many idiot parents who brought toddlers to see it when we went. I guess they are of the mindset that it's automatically for super young children because it was animated. Needless to say, my wife and I were the only ones laughing through most of the movie because the kids just didn't get the jokes/references.

    This is why I always see animated movies (and most movies generally) at the Alamo Drafthouse here in Austin. Animated movies after 6pm have a no-child-under-6 policy. It's fantastic.

    The atmosphere at the Drafthouse is always so much better than the average random Regal or Cinemark.

    Melkster on
  • Evil_ReaverEvil_Reaver Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Melkster wrote: »
    There were so many idiot parents who brought toddlers to see it when we went. I guess they are of the mindset that it's automatically for super young children because it was animated. Needless to say, my wife and I were the only ones laughing through most of the movie because the kids just didn't get the jokes/references.

    This is why I always see animated movies (and most movies generally) at the Alamo Drafthouse here in Austin. Animated movies after 6pm have a no-child-under-6 policy. It's fantastic.

    The atmosphere at the Drafthouse is always so much better than the average random Regal or Cinemark.

    We knew we should have waited until the 9:00 PM showing because that would have drastically cut down on the number of small children in attendance. However, we didn't and we dealt with the consequences of our decision.

    I will say, though, that we thought it was even funnier that we were the only people in that showing who got the adult jokes/references. It was exactly like when we saw Kung Fu Panda; the opening scene that makes fun of all the old time Kung Fu movies is god damn hilarious but no one else got the joke.

    Evil_Reaver on
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  • YamiNoSenshiYamiNoSenshi A point called Z In the complex planeRegistered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Seeing this week with my movie group, since I'm all about the kids movies. Up, Coraline, Princess & The Frog...

    YamiNoSenshi on
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  • King RiptorKing Riptor Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Kyougu wrote: »
    I really want to watch this.

    I also don't want to look like a Pedo, since I would go see it by myself, so I'll have to wait till DVD.

    I mean short of bringing a puppy and giant bag of candy while wearing a "I own a white van" t-shirt I don't see how you would give that vibe off.

    More to the point fuck them. You're an adult. You are allowed to watch any movie you want . The opions of people I doubt you'll ever se again in your life shouldn't matter.


    On that note I am going to see the movie by myself. Probably on Tuesday.

    King Riptor on
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  • MelksterMelkster Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Melkster wrote: »
    There were so many idiot parents who brought toddlers to see it when we went. I guess they are of the mindset that it's automatically for super young children because it was animated. Needless to say, my wife and I were the only ones laughing through most of the movie because the kids just didn't get the jokes/references.

    This is why I always see animated movies (and most movies generally) at the Alamo Drafthouse here in Austin. Animated movies after 6pm have a no-child-under-6 policy. It's fantastic.

    The atmosphere at the Drafthouse is always so much better than the average random Regal or Cinemark.

    We knew we should have waited until the 9:00 PM showing because that would have drastically cut down on the number of small children in attendance. However, we didn't and we dealt with the consequences of our decision.

    I will say, though, that we thought it was even funnier that we were the only people in that showing who got the adult jokes/references. It was exactly like when we saw Kung Fu Panda; the opening scene that makes fun of all the old time Kung Fu movies is god damn hilarious but no one else got the joke.

    You know what's interesting is that I didn't notice that many humorous adult references. Do you mean like pop culture references?

    I thought the humor was something that everyone could get. The jokes in dialogue were more humorous banter - sort of like between Dory and Marlin in Finding Nemo. And the other humor was more situational - like the early scenes where Toothless was trying to mimic Hiccup (oh god the smiling scene was amazing). I didn't notice that many adult references or anything that required you to have more than like an average English vocabulary, really.

    But maybe I just didn't get the references because I am not cultured. :(

    Melkster on
  • hanzohanzo Registered User regular
    edited March 2010
    Melkster wrote: »
    And the other humor was more situational - like the early scenes where Toothless was trying to mimic Hiccup (oh god the smiling scene was amazing).

    That was by far one of the best scenes. Any of the scenes where Hiccup and Toothless were getting to know each other were great. I plan on grabbing this as soon as it comes out on Blu-ray.

    Toothless trying to smile:
    toothlessSmile.png

    hanzo on
    steam_sig.png
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