On the inside of Hiccup (Jay Baruchel) is curiosity, ingenuity, and moral strength. He “can’t kill dragons”. However, he takes the time to learn about them and befriend one so deeply that the beast would save this human’s life before escaping to save its own.
In “dragon training”, the recruits learn what is inside the dragons that they, as dragon fighters, can use to their advantage. Dragons hate noise, “have a limited number of shots”, and have a “blind-spot”. “The Dragon Manual” holds other individualistic information about the types of dragons this village has seen. While these are actual facts the Vikings have learned about their “pests”, there are many more secrets to be hashed out about these magical creatures.
Hiccup learns dragons react violently to weapons. He also finds out they appreciate being fed, hate eels, and have a sensitive spot under their chin. And they can learn from humans who are kind to them and be vengeful towards those who are not. While everything the Vikings knew had been about battle, they learn to see dragons as friends. The inside of a dragon is not entirely violent and dangerous. They have a loving and protective side to them, too.
We even discover what is ultimately controlling the dragons from the inside. There is a giant dragon who acts as a “queen” and “controls them”. They are at the mercy of this vengeful, violent alpha.
Stoick (Gerard Butler) is also independent and strong. His name also represents his personality; he can endure whatever it takes to better the lives of the villagers. However, he cares deeply for his son. It pains him to hurt Hiccup, and he can even admit when he has made a mistake.
Ultimately, the Vikings have the ability to change inside them. They may not have liked dragons in the beginning, but in the end, they take them in and make them a part of daily life. Although Gobber may not have had it completely right, it is what’s on the inside that makes a person and a dragon.
Psychology has proven positive reinforcement is best. This movie presents this idea to both young and adult generations through creative means.
This movie could be interpreted as a commentary on racism and even science as an important aspect of society. Cool thoughts!
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