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How to Train Your Dragon 3 (2019)

This Review contains spoilers

It's hard to say goodbye to this iconic duo after winning our hearts a decade ago. We revisit Berk for the final time to see Hiccup and Toothless become the leaders they were meant to be. It seemed like things were looking up now that the Vikings and Dragons of Berk have made peace, however it doesn't seem like anyone outside of Berk shares their views. In the first film, it was Berk against the dragons until Hiccup befriended a Night Fury he named Toothless. The second film, Drago wanted to rule all dragons. The third film, Hiccup faces a new kind of threat as well as other personal issues.

The film starts off a year later after the battle with Drago with Hiccup and the gang on a mission to rescue all the captured dragons on board a ship, all, saved a camouflaged Light Fury. We can see how much Berk has evolved now that Vikings and dragons live together. The Dragon riders now wear flame proof armor made of dragon scales (each designed in honor of their individual dragons). A wonderful design choice that plays well with the theme of the film. Although Berk has become a safe haven for Dragons, it has also been getting overcrowded and causing more havoc. This makes Hiccup look back on the stories his father told him when he was a kid. The myth of a hidden world, a utopia where dragons live together in peace. He is on the quest to look for it in hopes of bringing all of Berk to live there so they may never have to face another enemy.

Not long after, Toothless runs off and encounters the Light Fury, becoming immediately smitten. However, being the last of his kind, Toothless is completely clueless as to how to win her over. This doesn't stop Hiccup from trying to help any way he can. Though the idea of a new love interest coming between a friendship has been done before, it is handled with maturity here. Though Hiccup is a bit skeptical of the Light Fury (who doesn't like humans), he still chooses to prioritize Toothless' happiness over his doubts. Decisions that drive his character arc throughout the entire film.

Hiccup has a lot of inner conflict between Berk being overcrowded, acting as a responsible chief, his relationship with Astrid, and his attachment to Toothless. Tuffnut, rather humorously, takes it upon himself to discuss with Hiccup his concerns about getting married.  However, it isn't long before clues begin to crop of a mysterious dragon hunter, who is laying traps for Toothless. The same hunter single handily responsible for hunting the Night Furies to extinction, Grimmel the Grisly

He is a cunning hunter out to toy with his prey before the kill. Hiccup and Grimmel face off in Hiccup's own home in one of the tensest moments of the film. Unlike Drago, who only wanted to command Dragons for his own ends, Grimmel seeks to wipe out all Dragons. Is own origins eerily mirroring Hiccup's initial desire to be a Dragon Hunter. This encounter leads to the destruction of Berk, leaving Hiccup with no choice but to push the Vikings to relocate to a new home. Specifically, the Hidden World of Dragons.

The people of Berk, Dragons in tow, find a brand new island and begin to settle down. Hiccup, however, still has the hidden world on his mind. Everyone tries to give him a reality check that moving to the hidden world may not be a realistic solution. Later that night, Toothless has re-encountered the light fury in one of the cutest scenes. Toothless is doing all he can to impress her, luckily, Hiccup is there to be his wingman. It eventually works but the only thing holding him back his inability to fly solo. Hiccup goes back to reinvent a tail for him. Toothless quickly sets off with the light fury where she takes him to the hidden world. Much like in every How to Train Your Dragon film since the first, the dragon flight animation is top notch. With a beautiful sequence of Toothless and the Light Fury flying through a moonlit sky, and into a raging storm. All before reaching the Hidden World, which in and of itself a feast for the eyes. With this newfound freedom, Toothless finds his own path in life, as the Alpha or King of the Dragon Word. A calling that, Hiccup realizes, Toothless must embrace on his own. Without him and without the people of Berk.

This is a rough wake up call for Hiccup. Even though he has shown growth in the past six years, nothing could prepare him for the possibility of having to part ways with his best friend. Hiccup comes to realize that his plan to move to the Hidden world may not be best solution, for him or Toothless. Things get complicated when Grimmel finally traps Toothless after using the light fury as a bait. He also takes all of the other dragons of Berk with him, leaving Hiccup feeling hopeless and worthless. Astrid steps in to help Hiccup with a pep talk, one that takes you back to the first film. Hiccup and the gang set off for the final battle to rescue the dragons.

In the end, Hiccup comes to terms with the reality let go of Toothless. It is hard to let go of someone you love but it's important to treasure the time spent. He reassures Toothless that this is the right thing to do. Everyone goes along with this and says goodbye to their dragons as well. Toothless and the Light Fury set off to the hidden world with the other dragons. Hiccup and Astrid get married soon after. 

It was a heartfelt farewell to one of the strongest friendships in animation history. The film has given us a bittersweet conclusion to the trilogy. Referencing the different stages of Hiccup's journey with Toothless as they say farewell. Much like Kung Fu Panda 3, the final installment of this animated trilogy has done everything it needed to do to conclude the story in a satisfying way. Complimented by wonderful visuals, character designs and a menacing adversary to amp up the story's conflict. It is difficult to say goodbye, but the years of spent with Hiccup and Toothless have created very special memories that will not be forgotten by fans and general audience members alike. 

FORMAT: Cinema (Later to be released on DVD/BluRay)  FROM: Dreamworks RATING: PG RUNNING TIME : 1hour 44 minutes.