Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Ready to replace Ebert and Roeper

On the weekend we took the kids to see How to Train Your Dragon. Kind of a spur of the moment thing; it's not like we'd been watching previews for months and awaiting its release with bated breath.

The kids had been to the theatre once before, over the Christmas break. I took them to see Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel, which is every bit as bad as you would imagine (although Mallory really enjoyed the sequence with the girl chipmunks singing "Single Ladies"). The problem was that for months, Disney had been pushing The Princess and the Frog as its big Christmas release, and you know how Mallory takes to anything involving princesses. So I had been promising for months to take them to see it. We have a theatre in town with 6 screens, and I never imagined that the big new Disney movie would not make it to my hometown theatre (which is of course what then happened). Alvin was the only G-rated movie in town. When you are dealing with a 2 year old and a 4 year old, it doesn't make sense to put them in the car for an hour before the show to take them to another theatre. I thought I was pushing my luck to have them sit through a 90-minute film as it was. Anyway, they did make it through Alvin and the Chipmunks (with popcorn and juice boxes as bribery) and that was under bad circumstances (we got there late and it was packed).So we knew they could last through How to Train Your Dragon. We got there early to get good seats (though in the end, the show was not nearly as full as the first one had been). I noticed that the movie had a PG rating and I looked into it before we went. The rating was on account of some action scenes. There is a lot of dragon-fighting in this movie, which did not faze Mallory in the least. I caught Liam looking away from the screen at one point when the biggest, scariest dragon came out (the rest of them turned out to be friendly). After the show, Chad commented on the animation, saying how realistic the characters were to the extent that the vikings all had (extensive) body hair that was unusual for a cartoon character, but very believeable. So you can bet that the dragons seemed real to the kids.

We can't have scarred them too badly by taking them to see it, because the next day Gramma and Grampa took them for a Happy Meal and the big promotion on now is How to Train Your Dragon toys. Mallory has been sleeping with hers for the past few nights and while Liam isn't one to cuddle up to anything in bed, it's been seeing some daytime action. So there can't be too many bad memories associated.

(For what it's worth, we did finally pick up a copy of The Princess and the Frog last week when it was released on DVD, and Mallory has had it on constant repeat since then.)