Last month, I discussed one of my all-time favorite movies, How to Train Your Dragon. And it just wouldn’t be complete without discussing its sequel as well!
So, a quick warning before we jump in—if you are planning to see this movie or care if you ever see it, DO NOT READ THIS POST. How to Train Your Dragon 2 is one of those movies that cannot be discussed without spoilers, and believe you me, you do not want this movie spoiled.
Moving on . . .
Heading into How to Train Your Dragon 2, I was most worried about the character personalities. I’d seen enough graphics from the movie to know they’d updated how each character looked. Great. So now Hiccup will be older and more mature and everything will make sense and he’ll just breeze through life without a care in the world like how many other sequels. Yippee.
Yeah, that’s not what happened.
Sure, Hiccup and his dad, Stoick, have made up a little bit. But they sure don’t understand each other. Stoick is determined that Hiccup will become the next chief. And Hiccup is just not so really very extra sure he wants to . . . or, more accurately, that he’s ready to.
But things like life rarely wait for us to be ready. (I mean, really, does he ever just have a normal date with Astrid?) Hiccup stumbles upon a group of dragon trappers who warn him of a coming threat—Drago, the alleged dragon master.
Hiccup believes he can change Drago’s mind, despite Stoick’s warnings and the fact that Hiccup has only known he existed for about five minutes now. “This is what I’m good at,” he insists moments before he and Toothless sneak off—okay, there was no sneaking, it was very obvious that he was leaving—of the barricaded island.
And just before he’s kidnapped by a vigilante dragon lady who is actually his mother.
Valka has at least one notable mistake in her past—namely, leaving Hiccup. She genuinely believed that leaving was the safest thing she could do for him—after all, she wasn’t like all the other Vikings and believed they could make peace with the dragons. What if one did attack and she couldn’t bring herself to kill it? But she’s on a mission now to do her best to fix what she broke.
What really struck me is how Valka just is. She apologized for the hurt she caused, she made it right, but she never apologized for who she was. She’s just herself—in the very best way she knows how.
Meanwhile, Hiccup clings desperately to his hope of changing Drago’s mind, the only thing he thinks he can do. A hope that leaves him stranded in the heat of battle when Drago takes over Toothless’ mind and sends him to kill Hiccup.
When Stoick takes the fatal blow to save Hiccup.
(YEAH, SO I WAS NOT EMOTIONALLY PREPARED FOR THIS MOVIE.)
At his dad’s funeral, after he’s shot the flaming arrow to burn his father’s ship, Hiccup stands on the beach with all his friends behind him. All waiting to hear what he has to say. What the plan is to get their dragons back. To save their island.
(Better yet, watch the scene here. It's a hard scene to describe. Or if you don't feel like being emotionally pulverized, just read my description below.)
And all he can say is, “I’m sorry, Dad.”
The silence stretches on a minute, before he adds, “I’m not the chief you wanted to be. I’m not the peacekeeper I thought I was. I don’t know . . .”
Valka steps forward and lays a hand on Hiccup’s shoulder. “You came early into this world. Such a wee thing. So frail, so fragile. I feared you wouldn’t make it. But your father, he never doubted. He always said you’d become the strongest of them all. And he was right. You have the heart of a chief, and the soul of a dragon. Only you can bring our worlds together. That is who you are, son.”
That is who you are.
Training dragons, changing people’s minds about them, the only things he thought he was good at, that was what Hiccup did. Not who he was.
Hiccup stares into the growing flames. He confesses, “I was so afraid of becoming my dad. Mostly because I thought I never could. How do you become someone that great, that brave, that selfless? I guess you can only try.”
So he just is who he is. And that is what helps him win back Toothless, defeat Drago, and save his village.
Hiccup was so caught up in what he did that he lost sight of who he was.
Sometimes we do the same thing.
“I play this sport.”
“I write this type of story.”
“This is my career.”
“I have been hurt in this way.”
All of those things shape who we are. But they do not define who we are.
Like Hiccup, we sometimes look to those who we view as chiefs in our lives. We worry how we can ever be as much as they are. It terrifies us, really.
But it’s not about becoming them. It’s about becoming us.
Who are you, really? When everything else is stripped away, what is still in your heart?
That is who you are—who God has made you to be. All you can do is try. And together, He and you will do amazing things.
*Have you seen How to Train Your Dragon 2? What did you think? What are the things closest to your heart? Share your adventures in the comments below!*
Hi, I'm Rachel! I'm the author of the posts here at ProseWorthy. Thanks for stopping by!