Monday, March 29, 2010

Saddle up your dragons

One should know that when I say that I watched this movie very closely before writing this review, the words should be taken in the literal sense, as I was sitting in the 2nd row close to the IMAX screen of 70" long X 50" height. With no need to say, I had a truly 3D experience turning my head sideways to watch the dragon flying from left to right. Chini watching along with me for sometime, decided that it is better to get a higher and overall look at the movie and moved to the back seats. Probably a habit from her college days. Anyway, coming to the movie, it is a simple movie of telling everyone that dragons are friendly creatures good enough to be pets for your kids and can also be used to ride to for a quick snack from McDonalds drive-thru. Gosh! The dragons are extinct now. Or is it the dinosaurs that are truly extinct? Does that mean that the dragons are not extinct? I am talking dragonshit. Don’t I? What to do? I just came back from the movie that taught me how to train my dragon.
It is actually fun and great. The movie maintains a fast action style throughout the movie. And the 3D experience is better than all the 3D animated movies released so far. (Avatar is not included in this list). Watching the movie so close (literally), I felt I could walk among the Vikings and the dragons and it was realistic and exciting to watch the camera diving through the open landscape and mountains taking us on a thrilling spin. One difference we noticed in this movie is the blurring or Out-of-focus effect for the background when focusing on the characters in the front. Even though this is something that is seen only in the normal films and new to the animated movies, the effect doesn’t quite feel good as it takes away the field of depth in many scenes and raises the question of what is the blurring in a 3D movie. Nice idea but not preferred.
Here is the story in a fireball. Distinct from the rest, the hero has more brains than strength and is considered a failure by his own father who hunts dragons as both the occupation and life's only mission. Trying to prove his father wrong, Hero catches a dragon, but couldn’t kill it. Slowly understands that whatever they have known about dragons is wrong as they are mostly tamable. Finally he proves the true nature of dragons and changes the future of the people after killing the monster dragon (I did say "mostly" tamable. Didn't I?) by riding on his "Toothless" dragon along with his friends. Just to clarify a point, he names the dragon he caught as "Toothless" as it did not have any teeth at his first sight. The second sight did show teeth enough to rip off a human though.
The movie is interesting not only for its animation and dragons, but the dialogues are well.... blazingly funny. The protagonist dialogues remind me of Justin Long in "PC vs. Mac" ads. And you also have Gerald Butler to voice as the Viking leader and protagonist’s father. Imagine King Leonidas fighting the dragons! Good performance indeed. All in all, the movie has almost everything fitting in the right proportions. Only troubling part of the movie is that we have seen this story in all the animated movies like Antz, A Bugs Life, Bee movie, Chicken Little, Finding Nemo, Happy Feet and Ratatouille. Probably, the audience is still accepting for the same old formula of "The hero is distinct from others and will save the world". Whatever it is, this movie is going to be as successful as the previous movies with the same storyline. A definite must watch for everyone and includes even those who do not have dragon in their home.