"Every kid’s fantasy brought to life in glorious 3D"

Living up to your parents is never easy.  With all the sacrifices they have made to bring you into this world, there is a huge amount of pressure to live up to their inevitably high expectations.  This pressure is no more evident than when your father is Stoick the Vast (voiced by Gerard Butler) the indomitable Viking Chief of the Island of Berk (nope, I’m not making the names up I swear).  This is the issue that faces little Hiccup (voiced by Jay Baruchel), who neither has the physical nor mental faculties to be a fearsome dragon slaying Viking in the shape of his father.

Aaaah yes.  The Dragons.  The residents of the Island of Berk are constantly plagued by attacks from all manner of winged beasties, from the Terrible Terror to the Gronckle, constantly having to rebuild burnt homes, and replace their ever-dwindling sheep population.  So when Hiccup finally manages to bring down the most feared dragon of all, the Night Fury, his place in history is assured……..except things don’t quite go according to plan.

How To Train Your Dragon has all the trademarks of your standard children’s film.  From the promotion of self-belief (be yourself, not what others want you to be), to the idealistic morals (don’t treat people based on how they look), there’s nothing in there to offend.  However, it more than makes up for this whiter than white subtext by offering thrills and spills a plenty.  With your 3D glasses on, it’s impossible not to bob and weave as Hiccup goes all Top Gun with his dragon, and the fact that all the kids around me were sat mouths gaping is testament to the wow factor of the film.

Most people reading this aren’t going to go and watch this film on a Friday night, but for those of you with little nippers, it’s a fantastic family day out.  It does however come with a caveat. If you’ve ever had to break the news to your rugrats that they can’t have a horse for Christmas, imagine how hard it’s going to be to tell them they can’t have a dragon…..especially when you want one yourself!