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How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World Review

Updated: Mar 29, 2019

by David Neff

Crafting a great trilogy is a near impossibility.  Seriously, think about all the work that is put into crafting a store that should span three months and you may come up with a handful of movies that are near perfection.  Most trilogies either have a messy ending that does itself no favors (Pirates of the Caribbean) or doesn’t have as good of quality of the first two movies (The Dark Knight).  Some have a very weak middle movie before having a solid final movie (Back to the Future) and some just introduce Ewoks. Lord of the Rings and Indiana Jones are two that I consider the two best trilogies but, I have to say watching How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World does very respectable job.

For once, instead of trying to settle down its own roots and allowing an ending that feels safe, How to Train Your Dragon 3 decides to up the ante and bringing the cast to maturity.  Taking place a year after the 2nd movie, the Isle of Berk has become a dragon utopia where humans and dragons are living in harmony almost symbiotically.  In fact, the only real issue is the prospect of marriage between Hiccup and Astrid to bring a unified front.  However, a new enemy familiar with Night Fury’s Grimmel learns of the existence of Toothless with the hopes of capturing and killing him.  Along this, Toothless meets a female “Light Fury”, who he quickly falls for and they explore the Hidden World, a world where dragons live in secret, safe and away from humans. It also becomes clear to Hiccup that maybe its dragons belong in their own world and has a decision to make regarding both races.


Instead of focusing on the painting of prejudice of creatures that were once regarded as monsters, writer/director Dean DeBlois instead focuses on doing what’s best for the person you love, and that having what makes you happy doesn’t always make the right decision.  It’s a difficult lesson that we all learn in life and something that Hiccup as a young leader must lean on.  It’s also fascinating how the push of the relationship between Hiccup and Astrid develop. Clearly, they both care for each other but, deal with their own insecurities. The belief that a couple should be united in making decisions as opposed to not speaking on it.  This was excellently developed by DeBlois as an eager life lesson to young love.  In a way, the ending leaves no room for further development of the story, something that will be questioned with Toy Story 4 after they had a perfect conclusion themselves.  It’s not spoiler to say that the conclusion of the story is exactly how this story needed to come full circle even if giving a retrospective look at growing older will create a tearjerker of a finale.


At the end of the day, How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World is a complete victory and a nearly flawless story.  It will give someone the satisfaction of having joined Hiccup, Toothless and the gang in a truly fantastic trilogy.  While there will be some eagerness to profit further with this story, it is best to leave a masterpiece alone. I, as a fan, am truly sad to say goodbye to this beautiful world, but I couldn’t ask for a better ending.


Rating 10/10

Recommended to see? Absolutely