Sunday, 24 April 2016

Six ways in which Big Hero 6 is HTTYD with robots (and why I love it anyway)

Warning: This review may contain mild spoilers for the Disney film Big Hero 6 and the Dreamworks films How To Train Your Dragon and How To Train Your Dragon 2.

I'm a big animation fan. I love cartoons, anime, animated films...

But I've never been one for Disney films.

(Wait. Isn't Inside Out Disney Pixar?)

I thought they'd broken up, but whatever. As far as the Disney Canon goes, I can count the films I've seen on one hand. Snow White. Bambi. The Lion King. The Little Mermaid. Wreck it Ralph...that's pretty much the list.

But, what can I say, the adverts were funny, the character designs were awesome, and kid heroes will never get old.


So, when I found myself in need of an animation fix, I ended up choosing a Disney film.
I ended up choosing Big Hero 6.
Like Inside Out, it deals with some seriously heavy themes for a kids' film. Unfortunately, said themes are heavy spoilers so I'm not going to discuss them beyond saying that they're explored in-depth and with sensitivity. Instead, I'm going to draw parallels between this funny, action-packed film and a similarly funny, action-packed film from a rival company simply because it amuses me.

1. The Protagonists 

Exhibit A - Hiro Hamada
Exhibit B - Hiccup
We have two shorter than average, smarter than average, early teen protagonists. Both of them design and build plot-relevent objects. Both of them gain a non-human partner. Both of them are sarcastic dorks.

2. Baymax and Toothless

So we have a TERRIFYING dragon. The most DEADLY of its species.

 (...He's a pussycat.)

Exactly. And then we have Baymax. A giant robot in armour that can shoot ROCKET FISTS and -


(He also gives free healthcare.)

3. First Flight

The first time I thought of How To Train Your Dragon whilst watching Big Hero 6 was when Hiro and Baymax went for their first flight. They're going to crash! They're going to crash! They're going to crash!

(And die.)

But then Hiro gives Baymax an instruction and, suddenly, they're gliding through the sky whilst Disney pull out all the stops to give Dreamworks a run for their money in the scenery department

Does this remind you of anything?

4. The Gang

Both films eventually feature six-man bands, and some of the roles are similar. Fred, Ruffnut and Tuffnut are all idiotic comic reliefs (bonus points because Tuffnut and Fred share a voice actor). Gogo is Hiro's second in a similar way to Astrid being Hiccup's (minus the romance). Fishlegs and Wasabi are also rather similar.

5. The Mentor

(We just entered spoiler central.)

Vagor Clouds activated.

Hiro's mentor is his big brother, Tadashi. In the second How To Train Your Dragon film, it is implied that Stoick has been mentoring Hiccup (or trying to, anyway) for his future role as chief. 

If you've seen both films, I'm sure you can connect the dots yourself.

6. They're both very loosely based on books

Apparently, Big Hero 6 is based on a Marvel comic book series. But loosely. Very loosely. Anyone who read the How To Train Your Dragon books as a kid will know that the films have even less in common with the books than the Percy Jackson films have in common with their books. 

But in a good way.

(This is by far the geekiest thing you've ever posted.)

I know, I love it.

How To Train Your Dragon vs Big Hero 6 - which is your favourite?