Sunday, 4 December 2011

AP2 Presentation: How To Train Your Dragon

I already knew that I wanted to present a clip from How To Train Your Dragon but which part I didn't know. I've been watching it again and again and parts of it again and again and I think I've decided which clip I want to have.

It's hard to find the clip on the internet so I will have to make one myself but it's on this video that someone has compiled themselves on youtube (I truly hate these kinds of youtube videos but nevermind..): Check it out
Clip is roughly 0.33 to 0.55.

I will upload a better clip soon.

Previously, Hiccup decided to release the dragon instead of achieving his goal up to that point (which was to kill a dragon and be finally recognised as Viking and not useless). Interestingly the dragon, straight after being released, also decided not to kill Hiccup. They both had an easy chance of killing each other but did not take it.
The second time they see each other is from afar. Hiccup is on a rocky edge watching the dragon struggle to get out of the dipped area surrounded by rock, trying to figure out why it won't fly away. The dragon only becomes aware of Hiccup's presence when he drops his pencil down into the area. It is also shown at this point that the dragon is unable to catch its own food when it fails to catch fish in the water. Hiccup and the dragon only gaze at each other from their places but nothing more, showing no bad intentions towards the other.

What I really like about this scene (the clip I'm analysing) is it is the first time Hiccup and Toothless have been face to face and in front of each other since when Hiccup released Toothless (though 3rd time they have seen each other, counting the moment of release). So by going right into the area where the dragon is currently trapped in (a very open area with very high walls of rock and little place to hide or escape through) is very dangerous.

The clip starts with Toothless slinking down from a high rock he had been watching Hiccup from, moving very cat-like. It is clear that he does not welcome Hiccup until he sees something he wants; the fish. He does not immediately approach Hiccup for it. He is still very suspicious and cautious and keeps low to the ground. A cat behaving like this would mean it is frightened and would attack if necessary, the same can be assumed for Toothless here. Hiccup, though obvious very scared, offers the fish immediately at arms length, tilting his head away in fear that the dragon may bite off more than the fish. Toothless, slowly and cautiously, moves towards the fish, putting one of his bad legs out first and following with his front. He almost takes it when he suddenly looks at Hiccup's waist and draws back growling. Hiccup seems to know immediately what has upset the dragon as he opens his fur jacket to reveal a knife. Touching it confirms that Toothless does not like it and won't approach him with it there. Hiccup drops the knife at arms length to his side but this isn't good enough for Toothless who flicks his head to one side, still looking at the knife. Hiccup flips the knife onto his foot and kicks it further to the side, we hear water splashing and can assume it is no where within reach now. Toothless, appeased, shows his approval by sitting up like a dog with huge eyes. This is not the first time his eyes have been bigger than usual but this is the first time he has looked cute with them.

Watching the wordless communication here is interesting as Hiccup seems to pick up exactly what the dragon is thinking, perhaps illustrating the first time a Viking has actually paid observing attention to a dragon without the intention of killing it but to understand it. This is the first 'conversation' as such between Hiccup and Toothless, presenting the idea of a bond that could possibly happen between them. It is evident that they are both curious about each other (Toothless not so much right now but he is still cautious with Hiccup at this point). Toothless shows intelligence in the way he directs Hiccup to get rid of the knife and it is established this way that they are able to understand each other, again opening a way for a possible bond.

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