Monday Movies : Animal Related Movies – The Dragons and The Zoo

This is my first movie review in ages. I have been very busy with my number one band and my number one actor lately…I almost have no time to share movie or book review. Those two consumed all my blogging time. Even now, I am still fighting the urge to post about them. I am going to wait till June to post any news about them.

Now…it is time to review two movies related with animals. One is really good while the other is just okay.

I love animals, especially those which can be pets. My love for my turtles is same with a mother’s love toward her children. Hence, I always love movies about animals.

Without further introduction, here are the two animal related movies I have watched a couple of weeks ago.

How To Train Your Dragon (2010)

Directors: Chris Sanders & Dean DeBlois
Starring (voices) : Jay Baruchel, Gerard Butler, Craig Ferguson, America Ferrera, Jonah Hill, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, T.J. Miller, Kristen Wiig
Based on: How to Train Your Dragon by Cressida Cowell

My friend, Wulan at Nerd in Writing, has been urging me to watch this movie for ages. I did plan to see it one day but waiting for it to be shown by local TV station. The reason is quite simple, I can predict the story by only seeing the trailer.

…but her persistence made me watch the movie faster than I thought.

The story is based on a book with same title. A boy named Hiccup isn’t like other Viking, he is weak and skinny. He wanted to kill dragons just like his father. But when he found himself in a situation where he can easily kill a dragon, he can’t do it. He lets the dragon go. Since that day, he tries to befriend with the dragon. He calls the dragon Toothless. Toothless is a legendary dragon that no one ever seen before.

Hiccup is forced by his father to join the training to defeat dragons. By observing Toothless, he learned how to defeat other dragons without hurting them. And…of course, a girl has to get involved in this matter. Astrid who has suspicion over Hiccup’s skill follows him into the forest. She meets Toothless and becomes Hiccup’s secret bearer.

Hiccup wants to prove that Dragons are not what like what the Vikings thought all this time. Dragons are just like any other animals. But big problem prevents Hiccup to deliver his good intention.

Although I can predict how the story goes, but I have to admit that I really like seeing Hiccup and Toothless relationship. The two are so darn adorable. Toothless is sooo cute. The human-dragon relationship is the main reason why I like this animation.

I used the poster of this animation for my turtle’s post.

We Bought a Zoo (2011)

Directors: Cameron Crowe
Starring: Matt Damon, Scarlett Johansson, Thomas Haden Church, Patrick Fugit, Colin Ford, Elle Fanning, Angus Macfadyen, Peter Riegert, Maggie Elizabeth Jones
Based on: We Bought a Zoo by Benjamin Mee

We Bought a Zoo sounds like an interesting movie when I saw the trailer, but it isn’t as good as I expected it to be.

The story: Benjamin Mee decides to have a new life after his wife died. He wants to buy a new house to build a new atmosphere for his children. Out of all the houses he is trying to choose, one house catches his and his daughter’s attention. They want to buy the house so bad…but the house is not as they imagine it to be. The house comes with a zoo.

Benjamin buys the house, his little daughter loves the house but his son hates it. He tries his best to maintain the zoo with the help of some people who really understand how to maintain a zoo. They story revolves around his effort and his relationship with his son.

When I first saw the trailer, I thought it would be a movie close to my heart because that man in the trailer was trying to save a zoo. I thought his reason was because he loved animals…but that wasn’t the reason!! Benjamin Mee bought the zoo because he needed new situation and from the beginning till the end, I didn’t find a good human-animal bonding. The scene with the tiger is the closest bonding but it didn’t leave good impression on me.

The last line in the movie also left me with disappointment, when the Lily asked Kelly “if you have to choose between people and animals, which one will you choose?” … the answer was people…and that answer left me with a feeling big disappointment. I was expecting her to say she would choose both. I guess I put my own feeling into it, if I was asked to choose between someone and my turtles, I would choose both.

There were also some unexplained situations. Like how come Benjamin had enough money to buy that huge land?

I wonder whether the movie stay true to the book or not.


Those are the two movies I watched recently (I need to watch more movies). I love to know what you think about those movies 🙂


  1. I’d give five stars to DRAGON, it was easily the best film that year and I don’t think just among the animated ones! The cutest film ever with a very strong message, especially with the end in which he becomes a boy without a leg and it still becomes a happy end.

    1. Glad to know you like it so much Dezz 🙂
      It was in the same year with Inception and for me Inception steals the spotlight of 2010.

      It does have strong message and I like the bonding between Hiccup and Toothless.

    1. Agree!! funny and has element that can always touch my heart.
      It’s predictable story is the only reason I can’t give 5 stars…other than that, it’s a great movie

  2. I saw the Dragon movie but not the other one. I thought the movie was quite good, and some of the flying/fighting scenes were very well done. I think they’re making a sequel.

    1. Yup…I agree, The Dragon is a good movie, and those dragons are adorable.
      I believe they sequel will be released next year, I could be wrong tho. I will check it out later.

  3. I keep meaning to watch the Dragon movie but I also keep forgetting about it. I’ll add it to my list. It just sounds like a fun feel good movie. Thanks for the reviews!

    1. I bet you’ll enjoy the movie…It’s a fun family movie. I enjoy every scene and every dragons. I sort of wish I could have one of them 😉

  4. I was surprised by how much I enjoyed How To Train Your Dragon! One of the best DreamWorks animation in a very long time!

    1. I don’t remember which animation belongs to Dreamwork or pixar or disney…but I have to admit that HTTYD is easily becomes one of my favorite among those digital animation movies.

  5. We bought a Zoo does sound very disappointing.
    I’m always afraid to watch animal movies, I’m afraid it will be very sad.
    My boyfriend made me watch “Kes”… It’s a British classic he thought I might like it. It was one of the most awful movies I’ve ever seen. Sooo sad. I was angry and shocked.
    I’ll keep How to Train your Dragon in mind. It sounds very cute.

    1. We Bought a Zoo probably disappointing for people like us because it doesn’t show the right amount of compassion toward animals…but for people who don’t have attachment toward animals would probably think it’s a good movie.

      Why were you angry and shocked? I never heard of Kes before.

      Do find time to watch the dragons…they are really cute and fun

      1. It’s a heartbreaking story of a young boy from a very poor family who trains a bird. there is nothing good in his life, his mother has lovers and drinks too much and so does his older brother. The bird is the first beautiful thing in his life. They have a very special relationship, he spends hours feeding and training the bird. His older brother is jealous and goes and kills the bird ina very horrible way. I’m still sick, just thinking of it.
        Why did they have to tell a story like this?

        1. Ow my God!! that is indeed horrible!!
          The story of the boy and the bird sounds like the one I would like but the killing is going to make me angry too.
          Thank you for telling me this, I can avoid that movie from now on.
          What’s the meaning for making such story anyway? That’s just not right.

  6. LOVE ‘How To Train Your Dragon’! I agree that Toothless is so adorable and his relationship w/ Hiccup is what made the movie for me.

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