A CHILDLIKE SENSE OF WONDER is not a pre-req for enjoying How to Train Your Dragon; nor is a tolerance for shrill pop-culture pandering, à la Shrek. Nope, all that's required is a willingness to admit the possibility of thoroughly enjoying a movie that's targeted at eight-year-olds—because if you can, I guarantee that you will.

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Dragon is essentially a "boy and his dog" story in the vein of Old Yeller, only nobody gets rabies and the dog is a fucking dragon. Hiccup (voiced by Jay Baruchel) is a clumsy young viking who wants nothing more than to be a dragon slayer like his dad—until the day he befriends an injured dragon, and starts to wonder if training dragons might not be better than killing them.

The story is charmingly told, but it's in the visuals that Dragon really distinguishes itself: Witness the creepily beautiful scene in which, as Hiccup and his dragon soar over the ocean, hundreds of dragons begin materializing out of the fog around them. This is the type of movie that I want my (hypothetical, future) children to watch, because it's imaginative and exciting and alert to the possibility of beauty in the world. It's also the type of movie that I want my (actual, present) stoner friends to see because, well... 3D dragons!

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