Critics Consensus: How to Train Your Dragon 2 is Certified Fresh

Plus, 22 Jump Street is also Certified Fresh.

This week at the movies, we've got Viking explorers (How to Train Your Dragon 2, with voice performances by Jay Baruchel and Gerard Butler) and college-bound cops (22 Jump Street, starring Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum). What do the critics have to say?

How to Train Your Dragon 2

92%

When How to Train Your Dragon became a runaway critical and commercial hit, it helped to quiet the contention that DreamWorks was simply a second banana to Pixar. Happily, critics say the inevitable sequel lives up to the high standards set by its predecessor -- it's exuberant, ambitious, and visually striking. This time out, Hiccup is all grown up and hoping to prove himself to his community. He and his dragon pal Toothless inadvertently discover a new land, where a different group of people work with dragons for a different purpose. The pundits say the Certified Fresh How to Train Your Dragon 2 is headier and darker than your average kiddie fare, and the result is a sweeping, imaginative fantasy adventure. (Watch our video interview with How to Train Your Dragon 2 stars Gerard Butler and Craig Ferguson.)

22 Jump Street

85%

21 Jump Street was a pleasant surprise, so what can we expect for an encore? How about a near-total repeat? Critics say that's not a bad thing at all; 22 Jump Street works well enough as an action comedy, but it's even better as a meta commentary on the action comedy formula. The plot unfolds exactly the same as before: two cops (Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum) go undercover (this time at a college) in order to foil a drug ring. Once again, they learn a bit about themselves (and each other) in the process. And once again, their boss (Ice Cube) is constantly up in their business. The pundits say the Certified Fresh 22 Jump Street has fun at the expense of cop movie cliches, but what really puts it over the top is the deft chemistry between its two leads. (Check out this week's Total Recall, a compendium of buddy cop movies.)

Also opening this week in limited release:

  • Agnieszka Holland's Burning Bush, a drama about the fallout from a brave protest of the Soviet occupation of Prague in 1969, is at 100 percent.
  • Policeman, a drama about the leader of an Israeli counterterrorism unit who's tasked with stopping a group of armed revolutionaries, is at 82 percent.
  • Witching and Bitching, a horror comedy about a desperate criminal gang that runs afoul with a coven of witches, is at 80 percent.
  • Ivory Tower, a documentary about the high cost of college tuition, is at 77 percent.
  • A Coffee in Berlin, a dramedy about an aimless man who meets a series of interesting people, is at 73 percent.
  • Violette, a biopic about celebrated French novelist Violette Leduc, is at 69 percent.
  • The Rover, starring Robert Pattinson and Guy Pearce in a thriller about two men trying to survive in post-apocalyptic Australia, is at 68 percent.
  • Heli, a thriller about a family that gets caught up in the Mexican drug war, is at 56 percent.
  • I Am I, a drama about a woman who tracks down her estranged father only to discover he suffers from memory loss, is at 50 percent.
  • Hellion, starring Aaron Paul and Juliette Lewis in a drama about a troubled 13-year-old reeling from the death of his mother, is at 50 percent.
  • All Cheerleaders Die, a horror comedy about a teenager who plans revenge on the pep squad, is at 48 percent.
  • The Signal, starring Laurence Fishburne and Brenton Thwaites in a sci-fi thriller about a group of hackers who stumble upon a top secret desert facility that may house extraterrestrial life, is at 47 percent.
  • Lullaby, starring Richard Jenkins and Amy Adams in a drama about a man who reconnects with his terminally ill father, is at 38 percent.

Comments

I fight for the users

Ian Fastert

Great week! Glad to see Dragon come close to its amazing predecessor. I'll have to see it for myself.

Jun 12 - 05:30 PM

Vits

Vicente Torres

While I didn't love HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON, I still think the sequel can be good. I did love 21 JUMP STREET, so the sequel is a must-see. Oh, and maybe WITCHING AND BITCHING. I hated THE LAST CIRCUS so maybe Alex De La Iglesia can be redeemed.

Jun 12 - 05:31 PM

Channing Tatum

Channing Tatum

22 Jump Street ftw!

Jun 12 - 05:37 PM

Dave J

Dave J

Although, "21 Jump Street" may perform well, it's still not going to be enough to beat "How To Train Your Dragon 2" since the demographic audience also includes children!

Jun 13 - 11:58 AM

shadypotential

Chris Cox

who gives a shit!

Jun 13 - 04:24 PM

Retro Reviewer

Matt R.

Yeah, I bet there will be underage kids sneaking into 22 Jump Street as well.

Jun 14 - 01:42 PM

Luis Garit

Luis Garit

2 movies one weekend going to have some movie fun

Jun 12 - 06:22 PM

Retro Reviewer

Matt R.

Man, this is like the biggest movie weekend in a long time! So pumped up for 22 Jump Street and HTTYD 2!!!!!

Jun 12 - 07:16 PM

Jon Cox

Jon Cox

skipping both main releases this weekend
have NO interest in them

I'd like to see the smaller titles though:
awesome how 'Witching and Bitching's rating went up
shame, 'All Cheerleaders Must Die' did meh but I still want to watch it

Jun 12 - 09:16 PM

quietus28

jj l

I'll skip both the main releases as well. If I see anything, I'll check out The Rover.

Jun 13 - 12:50 PM

shadypotential

Chris Cox

Oh Mr. I'm too good for mainstream. Why don't you marry the sundance festival already

Jun 13 - 04:25 PM

Brad and Netflix

Bradly Martin

That festival doesn't love you!

Jun 13 - 11:18 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

You should be THIS tall to ride the RT comments.

Jun 14 - 06:54 AM

Mark Vandrell

Mark Vandrell

The first Jump Street had a few laughs, but overall was a pretty generic buddy comedy and I'm doubting the sequel is much better. DVD at best.

Jun 12 - 09:46 PM

Hugo Emanuel Melo

Hugo Emanuel Melo

As beautifull as HTTYD's photography and effects were, the movie left me somewhat cold. It wasn't bad, but I did not found it to be that interesting or gripping - therefore I am in no rush to see the second istallment. But still I would prefer to watch the Dreamworks sequel than 22 Jump Street - the first one was dull, predictable and only mildly amusing and the sequel strikes me as even duller, playing the oldest trick in the book for people out of ideas - pretending to take jabs at Hollywood's lack of innovation by "satirically" sticking to formula and cliché. Nice try, boys, but it's obvious you are all dried up. The other releases strike me as stale as well. Guess I'll be saving a few bucks this week.

Jun 13 - 08:43 AM

Mark Vandrell

Mark Vandrell

They did a pretty good job. I wasn't completely taken with the charaters, but the animation was excellent and it had a solid story - amazing wasn't would I would call it and above 80% is a stretch for this movie and probably its sequel - its more likely judged vs its competition than actual content,

Jun 13 - 05:41 PM

Dave J

Dave J

Although, "21 Jump Street" may perform well, it's still not going to be enough to beat "How To Train Your Dragon 2" since the demographic audience also includes children!

Jun 13 - 11:58 AM

shadypotential

Chris Cox

who gives a shit!

Jun 13 - 04:24 PM

Retro Reviewer

Matt R.

Yeah, I bet there will be underage kids sneaking into 22 Jump Street as well.

Jun 14 - 01:42 PM

quietus28

jj l

I'll skip both the main releases as well. If I see anything, I'll check out The Rover.

Jun 13 - 12:50 PM

shadypotential

Chris Cox

Oh Mr. I'm too good for mainstream. Why don't you marry the sundance festival already

Jun 13 - 04:25 PM

Brad and Netflix

Bradly Martin

That festival doesn't love you!

Jun 13 - 11:18 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

You should be THIS tall to ride the RT comments.

Jun 14 - 06:54 AM

shadypotential

Chris Cox

who gives a shit!

Jun 13 - 04:24 PM

Retro Reviewer

Matt R.

Yeah, I bet there will be underage kids sneaking into 22 Jump Street as well.

Jun 14 - 01:42 PM

shadypotential

Chris Cox

Oh Mr. I'm too good for mainstream. Why don't you marry the sundance festival already

Jun 13 - 04:25 PM

Brad and Netflix

Bradly Martin

That festival doesn't love you!

Jun 13 - 11:18 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

You should be THIS tall to ride the RT comments.

Jun 14 - 06:54 AM

Mark Vandrell

Mark Vandrell

They did a pretty good job. I wasn't completely taken with the charaters, but the animation was excellent and it had a solid story - amazing wasn't would I would call it and above 80% is a stretch for this movie and probably its sequel - its more likely judged vs its competition than actual content,

Jun 13 - 05:41 PM

Brad and Netflix

Bradly Martin

That festival doesn't love you!

Jun 13 - 11:18 PM

Jeff Derrickson

Jeff Derrickson

I just got back from seeing How to Train Your Dragon 2, and Gods above! I knew it was going to be good...but I tell you this with as serious a tone I can muster from this humble heart: this is one of the greatest movies ever made.

If you're thinking that this is just a kid's cartoon, you're fooling yourself. If you care anything about family, animal rights, and connections that people and animals can have, you go see this movie tomorrow. Trust me on this one.

Jun 14 - 12:10 AM

Aty Behsam

Aty Behsam

HTTYD2 wow it's amazing how they managed to pull off a sequel as good as the original movie!

Jun 14 - 02:12 AM

Kenneth S.

Kenneth Spillman

considering the original it's not that amazing

Jun 14 - 09:06 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

I will not be fooled again into seeing a stupid frat/fat bot comedy. The reviews for 21 Jump Street were inexplicably positive, so I see no point in trusting the critics on this one. Instead, I need to grab The Rover, Witching and Bitching and Heli.

Jun 14 - 06:52 AM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

You should be THIS tall to ride the RT comments.

Jun 14 - 06:54 AM

Retro Reviewer

Matt R.

Yeah, I bet there will be underage kids sneaking into 22 Jump Street as well.

Jun 14 - 01:42 PM

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