How to Train Your Dragon (3D)

I know I owe a review of Hot Tub Time Machine and I will get to it but I seen this movay the other night with my nephew and I was more psyched about it than Hot Tub Time Machine (although I liked Hot Tub Time Machine)-- this movie is the better movie and the best movie I've seen this year.

First off, there are two types of 3-D movies. One is acceptable and fun. The other should be boycotted and urinated on. Some 3-D movies that are shot as a 3-D movie (Avatar, Dragon) and then there are others that are retro-fitted and 'converted' into 3-D (Alice in Wonderland, Clash of the Titans). Converted 3-D sucks. That's why when you watch Alice it's lacking in 'in your face' stuff. And yes, I understand that I can always see the stupid movie in 2-D if I hate the retro-3-D so much-- but then I'd feel like I was seeing the 'cheap' version. But the reality is the 'cheap' version is the retro-fitted 3-D! It's artistically cheap and a cheapshot for us movie junkies! Which is why I can smell that Clash of the Titans super sucks. It's a cheap movie made cheaper and worserer. And there's a ton of bullshit retrofitted 3-D movies coming our way! They're all ripoffs! And deserve to be thrown in the garbage upsidedown with their legs sticking out! And then a whole tray of old lo-mein dumped on top of em! Then out comes the urine! Screw that ripoff bullshit...

On the flipside, when I excitedly showed up at 'Dragon' for a 8:10PM movie with my nephew and saw that only the 2-D version was playing at that timeslot (thanks for the clarification online stupid movie people)-- I refused to see it in 2-D. Movies that are meant for 3-D need to be seen in 3-D. And although my nephew was willing to go for the 2-D with no problem-- I had to pull adult supervision on that and convince him otherwise. Which is why we left and killed some time together before heading back to the theater to see a 9:40PM movie. To see a movie in that timeslot was pretty mindblowing for my nephew. He was like, 'This movie ends at like 11:30! So late!' I was like, 'That's right! That's how Uncle Todd rolls! We all about that late-night brooklyn shazizzle, ma nef-izzle!' He was nervous he was gonna fall asleep-- so I got him a Starbucks Frap before he headed in. (no joke)

He didn't fall asleep and I didn't fall asleep. Not even close.

I thought this movie was friggin great. It had legitimate action. Legitimate teen-angsty dad/son stuff. And a story that I thought came together way tight-- plus it was all wrapped in a puh-powed 3-D puh-pwamo! And, it was funny. I laughed out loud a dozen times. Yeah, the basic storyline isn't anything new. Yadda, misunderstood kid finds secret creature that is first scary and then cute. Yadda yadda, but for whatever reason the straight shot story didn't bother me. It still seemed fresh enough. And any time there may have been a slump of sorts this movie would yank bridle and we'd be all up in the clouds zooming around so fast you could feel the breeze in your ears. A few times my mouth dropped at something so friggin wowed that I welled up in the eyeballs in appreciation. So psyched to be watching and digging.

I realized (shamefully) that if my nephew wasn't in town I wouldn't have seen this movie by myself. It gave me a wake-up reminder that when it seems like there's "nothing to see"-- the animated movie is a great go-to even for us grownuppers. You don't need to be dragging a caffeinated kid to see this at 9:40 at night to dig it. For frucks sake, I friggin may have actually seen Clash of the Titans if he wasn't in town! Or worse (Repo-Men)! When here staring me in the face was the best animated movie I've seen in years. Better than the drag-ass overrated Up and it's already pre-better than next Shrek (which can go fk itself two movies ago). It's hard to type more about Dragon without including spoilers so I'll stop here. And yeah, I do wonder how 'spectacular' it would be if it was only in 2-D-- less I'm sure. How much less? I'm actually not sure. In this flick the 3-D was a coolio bonus to make it better-- not a cheap tech gimmick to fool me into thinking I was seeing something worthwhile.

Three Good This About this Movie

- The opening attack friggin rocks.
- Most fun (+ romantically lovey) flying since 1978 Superman.
- Great textures and boomy sound.

Three Bad Things About this Movie

- It took me a while to get used to the kids voice. Jay Dushamel or whatever didn't seem legit at first.
- The girl was a little too girl-power forced.
- Dreamworks Animation now seems to be making a legit effort to break away from being the lazy hack offspring of Pixar.

All in all, this is the movie to see this year whether you got kids or not. Yeah, you gotta take off your grownup hat to get down into it but it's worth the exercise. It looks great. There was love behind this movie. It friggin flows and the end situation is surprisingly emotional and stuff. And as I walked out with my nephew and checked in with him if he dug it or not (he did)-- but maybe not as much as Shrek style flicks-- but I felt pretty pumped up about seeing something that made me so super smiley. I was even thinking my nephew and I could stop in a bar and have a midnight celebratory drink and talk about it-- but I guess that would probably be pushing it.