That's a lot to take in, and there's a lot to remember from the preceding movies in order to fully understand this one. In the first movie, Hiccup repairs Toothless' maimed tail fin with a mechanical replacement of his own design, which he can control by sitting in the saddle. When he tried to give Toothless a tail he could use on his own, the dragon rejected it, preferring to stay connected with his human buddy. Like his dragon, Hiccup is also physically impaired after losing part of his leg in the first movie, and walks with a prosthetic. In How to Train Your Dragon 2, Toothless survives a battle with a "Bewilderbeast" and becomes the dragon alpha, the one all the other dragons will flock to and whose orders they'll obey. By capturing the alpha, Grimmel muses in the new movie, he can take the whole lot of them.
On the more technical side of things, the How to Train Your Dragon movies provide a fascinating look at how Dreamworks' animation department has evolved over the years. With nearly 10 years between the first and third, it's amazing to look back at How to Train Your Dragon and compare it to The Hidden World, one of the most beautifully computer-animated children's movies ever made. Everyone's hair is fuller and flowier, the dragons' scales are shinier and more pronounced, the fire looks more like real fire, and everything from grass to ocean waves is so much more tactile. Watching The Hidden World, you may feel like you can reach through the screen and touch it. There's even a riveting "one-take" fight sequence at the start of the movie in which every character is diving in and out of smoke. The only things that don't show much of a difference are all the flying scenes because those were already done so beautifully in the first movie. And, like the two that came before it, HTTYD3 also features yet another exciting, emotional, gorgeous score from John Powell.