Parents' Guide to

How to Train Your Dragon 2

By Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 7+

Epic, thrilling 3D adventure sequel is outstanding.

Movie PG 2014 105 minutes
How to Train Your Dragon 2 Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 8+

Based on 45 parent reviews

age 6+

Portrays A Strong Father and Leader, Adorable Love Story, Contains Sad Scenes and Violence

How to Train Your Dragon 2 continues the story of Hiccup and Astrid, and eventually, they will marry in other movies. This is an innocent love that develops from a charming crush. Hiccup meets his long-lost mother in this show, and his father is reunited with her briefly before he dies. He sacrifices himself to save Hiccup when the dragon war breaks out. This part of the movie is violent and sad for younger viewers; however, it is touching because it shows the love of a parent and the lengths a father will go to protect his child. The chief is portrayed as a good man and a strong leader.
age 7+

terrible and sad, letdown from first movie

Watched with my 4 year old after both of us loving first movie. He went quiet during and after it and turned off before end. Lets starts with the mother on it, what an atrocious character and role model who apparently swans off leaves her son + father to live with dragons but then is welcomed back with open arms years later as if nothing happened LOL. What a joke. The whole plot with the Dad is that the son always knows best, this is a carry over from first one which is nauseating but worse here, then the Dad is killed by one of the good characters under mind control. It is drawn out and sad completely unnecessary for the type of movie this is. Wouldn't recommend at all, bad messaging bad movie.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (45 ):
Kids say (76 ):

It's rare to love a sequel as much as the original, but the filmmakers behind How to Train Your Dragon took their time and breathed magical fire into this follow-up. How to Train Your Dragon 2 is sure to please teens and adults as much as single-digit-aged fans. The multi-layered plot is rather sophisticated and has an almost Game of Thrones-lite sensibility (a comparison made even more obvious by the notable addition of Harington to the cast): No one is safe (even well-loved characters face danger and death); there's a massive David-and-Goliath fight sequence that very much echoes a trial by combat scenario, with the winner taking all of the dragons to his side; and the women are just as caught up in the high-stakes action as the men. Of course, the edgier themes and violence are still family friendly, but the movie does have an older target audience than pre-K-friendly animated films like Frozen or Ice Age.

Everything that made the first film so great -- fabulous use of 3-D-, gorgeous visuals, strong parent-child dynamics, romance, and humor -- are all alive and well in the sequel, as is the touching addition of a mother-son subplot and an actual villain in the form of Drago (a scary-sounding Hounsou). There's a lot going on, but it's remarkably compelling and emotional, as well as funny and a blast to watch. Hiccup may have been the voice of reason in the first movie, but in the second he's the one who needs to learn a thing or two; he doesn't have it all figured out, and that makes him even more endearing. There's already a third movie in the works, and now it seems likely that director Dean DeBlois can make it stellar enough to join the ranks of Toy Story and Shrek as unforgettable animated franchises.

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