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Posts Tagged ‘How to Train Your Dragon’

HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON: THE HIDDEN WORLD – John Powell

March 28, 2019 1 comment

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

Prior to its premiere in 2010, I had never heard of How to Train Your Dragon. I knew nothing of Cressida Cowell’s book series, had pretty much zero interest in watching the film (I assumed it was a silly thing for children), and I certainly had no expectations about John Powell’s score. I thought it might be a fun diversion – Powell had scored several excellent animated films before it, including Antz, Chicken Run, Shrek, Kung-Fu Panda, and several entries in the Ice Age series – but beyond that, my anticipation levels were low. Flash forward nine years and How to Train Your Dragon is a beloved animated franchise boasting not only a trilogy of films but a slew of straight-to-DVD shorts, a television series, video games, and more. The three Dragons films have grossed a combined $1.5 billion worldwide, both the first two films were nominated for the Oscar for Best Animated Feature, and Powell’s scores are now regarded as some of the finest film music written anywhere in the world over the last decade. Read more…

HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON 2 – John Powell

June 30, 2014 3 comments

howtotrainyourdragon2Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

John Powell received his first – and, to date, only – Academy Award nomination for the surprise smash hit animated film from Dreamworks, How to Train Your Dragon, in 2010. The film was almost universally well-received, and grossed over $400 million worldwide, so a sequel was inevitable: so here we are, four years later, with How To Train Your Dragon 2. The film picks up five years after the events of the last film, and finds the heroic Viking dragon rider Hiccup (Jay Baruchel), his girlfriend Astrid (America Ferrara), and his dragon Toothless, happily exploring and mapping out new lands on behalf of his father Stoick the Vast (Gerard Butler), the chieftain of Berk. However, on one of their expeditions, Hiccup and Astrid discover a terrible potential threat: an insane warrior named Drago Bludvist (Djimon Hounsou) who has been capturing and enslaving dragons of his own for years, in order to help him conquer neighboring villages. Worst of all, Drago has a ‘bewilderbeast’, an alpha dragon which can control all other dragons it encounters – including Toothless… The film has an impressive voice cast, including Cate Blanchett, Craig Ferguson, Jonah Hill and Kit Harington from Game of Thrones, and – thankfully – sees John Powell returning to the scoring stage after his brief personal sabbatical last year. Read more…

HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON – John Powell

March 26, 2010 2 comments

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

We’re in a Golden Age of animated motion pictures. When I was a kid growing up in the 1980s you got one, maybe two films from Disney in a calendar year, plus the odd independent movie like Watership Down or The Secret of NIMH, or some arty foreign language thing with bad dubbing, but that was about your lot. Since the Disney renaissance began in 1989 with The Little Mermaid the strength and popularity of the animated feature has grown exponentially, to the point where every major studio has its own animation department, well over a dozen full length feature animations are released each year, and companies like Pixar break box office records with apparent ease. The competition is fierce, but the Dreamworks studio seems to have managed the right blend of hip comedy and family-friendly action, spinning off from their massively successful Shrek series with hits such as Kung Fu Panda, Madagascar, and their 20th and most recent feature, How to Train Your Dragon. Read more…