A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Dragons: Dawn of the Dragon Racers is a short film about the invention of dragon racing that takes place in between How to Train Your Dragon and How to Train Your Dragon 2. Kids who haven't seen the movies, other short films, or TV show in the series may be a little confused about who's who, but they should still be able to enjoy the action. There's quite a bit of cartoon violence, some mild name-calling and gross-out humor, and some moderately suspenseful scenes that may be a bit scary for very young kids. But with a positive message about playing fair and trying new things, this short and silly flick is a fun pick for grade-schoolers and up.
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What's the story?
As the kids from the dragon academy get ready for the dragon race, they reminisce about how the sport of dragon racing was invented. In flashbacks, they remember that Stoic (Nolan North) put Hiccup (Jay Baruchel) in charge of planning the annual Viking Regatta while he was away. But instead of focusing on getting things ready for the big race, Hiccup found himself dragged into a sheep-gathering competition with his friends. Soon everyone was caught up in the fun and the Regatta was forgotten -- that is, until Stoic returned. Will Stoic be mad? Or will he get caught up in the competitive spirit, too?
Is it any good?
DRAGONS: DAWN OF THE DRAGON RACERS is a short and silly romp that should be entertaining for fans of How to Train Your Dragon as well as those new to the series. It's goofy, lighthearted, and fast-paced. Although the kids from the dragon academy are very competitive with each other and not all of them always play fair, they show that people with different personalities and strengths can be the best of friends. It's certainly not the best of the How to Train Your Dragon series, but it adds some nice backstory for die-hard fans who can't get enough of dragon racing.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the kids at the dragon academy in the How to Train Your Dragon series. They're all very different. Why do you think they make such a good team?
Why do you think Tuffnut and Ruffnut cheated? Is it ever OK to cheat?
Which is your favorite movie in the How to Train Your Dragon series? Why?