Movie Night: How to Train Your Dragon

Movie Wednesday How to Train Your Dragon

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Cressida Cowell’s How to Train Your Dragon has captivated millions since it was first published, and in 2012 it was adapted into a film. The film is very different from the book, but it’s a gorgeous piece of work that’s definitely worth a watch.

On the storm-tossed island of Berk, Vikings and dragons are locked in a brutal war. Hiccup, teenage son of the Chief, has a lot on his shoulders and is desperate to prove himself. But when he shoots down a dragon in battle, he can’t bring himself to kill it—and the dragon can’t bring itself to kill Hiccup.

In utmost secret, Hiccup gradually befriends the dragon, whom he names Toothless. Their friendship might change the world. But Hiccup’s friends are growing closer to discovering the truth, and the Vikings and dragons are getting closer and closer to wiping each other out. It might already be too late.

Beautifully animated and with an important message at its heart, How to Train Your Dragon is a superb film for the whole family.

Discussion Questions

  • The movie is quite a loose adaptation of the book. It uses the original idea to create new characters and a new story line. Do you enjoy films like that or do you prefer adaptations that stick more closely to the source material? Explain your answer.
  • How does the soundtrack contribute to the cinematic experience?
  • Would the film work as live action? Give examples where it might or might not work as well.
  • Though the tribe call themselves Vikings, they bear little resemblance to historical Vikings. Does historical accuracy matter in a fantasy film? Why or why not?
  • Would you like to own a dragon? If so, what kind?

Additional Resources

How to Train Your Dragon party ideas – DIY ideas for a How to Train Your Dragon themed kids party.

Make Your Own Viking Helmet – Create your own Viking helmet.

Arrow How to Train Your Dragon Learn language arts naturally with the How to Train Your Dragon Arrow!

The Arrow is the monthly digital product that features copywork and dictation passages from a specific read aloud novel (you purchase or obtain the novels yourself).

It’s geared toward children ages 8-11 and is an indispensable tool for parents who want to teach language arts in a natural, literature-bathed context.

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