Monday, October 18, 2010

i'm watching "how to train your dragon" for like the 80th time

i'm going to preface this by saying...  it's a cute movie.  it's not going to change the world.  it doesn't have any MORE of an important message than any other animated movie anymore.  and yes, it ends with the same "isn't everyone wonderful exactly the way they are and by the way the geek gets the girl" theme. 

and the 80 times i've watched it, it's been background.  i've been doing laundry.  feeding bubby.  alternately getting out/playing with bubby playing with/putting away bubbys blocks, rings, and toys. alternately hacking up a lung and sneezing into my hankie. so it took me till about the 68th watching to notice something.

they use the gods names.

i guess i hadn't really thought about it, but i really didn't expect them to.  as with every other kids movie, i suppose i just expected them to gloss over the vikings religion.  if they mentioned it at all.  but they did.  it actually played a pretty important, though small, role in the movie.  stoick prays to odin.  the blacksmith praises thor.  astrid yells for freya's help. one of the twins even calls his sister "bride of grendel" 

now, i love the norse gods.  (and oddly, the greek goddesses.  i'm weird like that)  and i love love LOVE that this movie put them in.  i can honestly say that i can't think of another movie, let alone a kids movie, that deals with an "alternate" religion in such a wonderful way.  there was not preaching, no stuffing it down the masses throats.  just being....  realistic.  the gods were part of these vikings lives, but not the whole of it.  they are mentioned not as a flag, but in passing. 

and isn't that kind of how it should be?  where it isn't that the religion is the message, but that the people were good, and kind, and just, no matter what there religion was?

so i'll be watching this move for at least another 80 times.  a month.  or so.  admittedly it helps that i love dragons.  and gerrard butler.

and for refrence, in this house....  the geek got the girl.


  1. Now here's the biggest question..why do all the vikings have scottish accents?

  2. Along the same lines as the accent, I went to this movie in the theater with Tricia and her mom. After the movie, they made a comment about the music in the movie. They are both very talented when it comes to music, and it's always discussed after a seeing a movie. They were both a bit perplexed about why they chose Celtic music for a Viking movie. They both love that music style, but it just seemed odd. I looked at them and said, "well, how much traditional VIKING music do you know?". They both looked at me with the realization on their faces that I was right! It was the first time I had them stumped on a music style!

  3. I will give them this...The modern celt( as in the genetic linkage for about the last few centuries) is actually a mixture of the gaullic celtic ancestry and the viking raiders(mainly danish). That's where the red hair comes from. However the time frame of the movie mixed with an undisclosed global location makes it very disconcerting. As for the music, the majority of what is considered celtic music is very heavily influenced by seafaring musical styles, which can also be proposed to be linked to the seafaring nature of the raiders and the traveling nature of the celts themselves.
    But was very distracting..
    *takes off history geek glasses*
    but it was a really cool and entertaining movie!

  4. I love this movie and my preschooler is obsessed with it. I'd picked up on the "in Odin's name" but totally missed the other two. How interesting!


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