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Review: ‘How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World’ is the Perfect Conclusion to a Beloved Series

February 22, 2019Britany Murphy

In the highly anticipated third and final instalment of the How to Train Your Dragon series, Toothless and Hiccup are back to their old adventures. However, not all is well with Berk when a new and dangerous enemy enters the fray.

How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World opens in epic fashion with our favorite vikings Hiccup (Jay Baruchel), Astrid (America Ferrera), Snotlout (Jonah Hill), Valka (Cate Blanchett), Ruffnut (Kristen Wiig), Tuffnut (Justin Rupple) and Fishlegs (Christopher Mintz-Plasse), alongside their faithful pet dragons, including the last known Night Fury and dragon alpha, Toothless. The viking clan and their dragons are in the midst of rescuing some fire-breathing reptiles from captivity to bring back home to Berk. However, upon their arrival back to the their home, Gobber (Craig Ferguson) points out that space in Berk has become limited and that Hiccup cannot keep bringing more dragons back to the city.

Since the city's co-existence with dragons is now known, it has put a target on Berk and the dragons. Many dragon-hunters abound, as well as those who still yearn to capture the dragons to create dragon armies. In fact, an elite dragon hunter named Grimmel (F. Murray Abraham) is especially interested in Toothless, and he intends to use a Light Fury the Vikings unknowingly left behind during their rescue mission to get Toothless' attention and use her as a ploy to capture the final Night Fury. Somehow, Grimmel manages to enter Berk undetected, and after he attacks Hiccup and the rest of the clan, Hiccup decides that Berk is no longer safe for its citizens. As a result, Hiccup and the rest of the Berkians (and their many dragons) set off in search for the safety of the Hidden World.

In this final part of the trilogy, the story continues from where it left off with 2014's How to Train Your Dragon 2, leaving Hiccup as the chief of Berk and Toothless the alpha of all the dragons. It's great to see the growth that both characters have gone through in this three-film journey — something that director and writer Dean DeBlois captures perfectly throughout each movie. When we first met Hiccup back in 2010, he was in the shadow of his father, Stoick the Vast. He became the first of his clan to catch a Night Fury, and due to this, Hiccup not only made a friend for life, but he was able to change the way his family, friends and neighbors saw the dragons. By the time we get to The Hidden World, Hiccup has created a utopia where humans and dragons live together in harmony.

Not only is the film's growth in perfect symmetry with its predecessors, but you can tell that this growth is also felt by the actors. It's easy to feel the chemistry and rapport that the cast has developed and grown into over the last nine years. Much like the first two movies, this voice acting ensemble is amazing. Baruchel and Ferrera as Hiccup and Astrid are just as fun as usual, and this time around there's more dialogue from their friends Ruffnut, Tuffnut and Snotlout, which makes for some of the film's best comedic moments.

As The Hidden World is the end to this epic tale, it's bittersweet to know that this is the last time we will get to hear all of the actors in one place (aside from some of them reprising their roles in the animated spin-off television series). However, as the movie is a fitting end, it's nonetheless great to see the cast reunited one last time. And although it's sad to know that this will be the final act in this journey, the ending is one that will certainly leave audiences with smiles on their faces.

How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World releases February 22nd, 2019 from Universal Pictures. The film has an MPAA rating of PG for adventure action and some mild rude humor. Its runtime is 1 hr. 44 min.

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