Dragons have long captivated the imagination of humans, appearing in myths and legends throughout history. They are often depicted as powerful and fearsome creatures, capable of breathing fire and wreaking havoc.
In recent years, dragons have also been popular subjects in movies, with many films featuring these mythical beings as the main characters. From animated adventures to live-action epics, here are some of the best movies about dragons worth checking out.
7/7 The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (2013)
Smaug makes his first appearance in The Hobbit: An Expected Journey, where he invades the Lonely Mountain and drives the dwarves out of their capital. However, it’s in The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug that the fierce dragon, voiced by Benedict Cumberbatch, is well captured, where Thorin Oakenshield (Richard Armitage) sends Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman) to retrieve the Arkenstone from the dragon’s lair quietly but instead awakens Smaug, who begins to terrorize them. An epic battle ensues between the dwarves and Smaug, who then takes to the skies heading to the nearby town for revenge.
6/7 The Reign of Fire (2002)
In Reign of Fire, London’s underground tunnels reveal a cavern harboring creatures in hibernation. Fire-breathing dragons emerge from the earth, leaving a trail of destruction in their wake. When one is killed, countless more take its place, and they quickly establish their dominance pushing humankind to the brink of extinction. Van Zan (Matthew McConaughey) is introduced, a tough guy with grand ideas about slaying the dragons. He disagrees with Quinn (Christian Bale), who errs on the side of caution when sparring with the beasts. Van Zan hypothesizes the best way to end the menace of the dragons, and they set off in search of the King of the Dragons.
5/7 How to Train Your Dragon (2010)
How to Train Your Dragon is set in Berk Island, where dragon fighting is a way of life. Hiccup (Jay Baruchel) is taken to a dragon-fighting school, where he must kill a dragon to prove he has acquired the necessary skills. He injures a fearsome dragon, but instead of destroying it, he befriends it and nurses it. Hiccup names the young dragon Toothless. The friendship steers Hiccup to the realization that there may be more to dragons than he has been led to believe. The collaboration with the beasts means there are new possibilities for the Berk people.
4/7 Raya and the Last Dragon (2021)
Raya and the Last Dragon is set in the mythical world of Kumandra, where people and dragons lived in harmony a long time ago. Evil forces known as the Druun bring death and destruction to the land and turn all life to ash and stone. The dragons sacrifice themselves to save humanity and, using their combined power, destroy the Druun. All that remains is a magical gem and the legend of the last dragon. When the evil revisits the land, Raya (Kelly Marie Tran), the warrior princess, spends the next six years searching for the legendary lone dragon. It takes the collaboration of Raya, Sisu (Awkwafina), the last dragon, and trust and teamwork among humanity to defeat the Druun, restore the land and save all who had been turned into stone.
3/7 Eragon (2006)
Eragon (Edward Speleers) chances upon a glowing blue stone that turns out to be a dragon’s egg. He soon realizes that the beast that hatches has selected him to be her rider. He names the creature Saphira (Rachel Weisz) and, under the guidance of Brom (Jeremy Irons), learns of his destiny as a Dragon Rider. He sets off on a predestined journey to defend his home against the evil King Galbatorix (John Malkovich). This former dragon rider betrayed his fellow riders and Alagaesia in his quest for power.
2/7 Pete’s Dragon (2016)
A young Pete (Levi Alexander) is riding in the backseat during a family vacation when his parents swerve to avoid hitting a deer in Pete’s Dragon. They die in the accident, but Pete survives. Elliot (a dragon voiced by John Kassir) rescues Pete from wolves and parents the child as they live in the woods together. Mr. Meacham (Robert Redford) is a woodcarver who entertains children with stories of a dragon who lives in the woods.
His daughter Grace (Bryce Dallas Howard) proves the stories true when she encounters Pete (Oakes Fegley), who reveals he lives in the woods with a giant, friendly dragon. Loggers threaten the wilderness, and Pete must get back to help Elliot, even if that means leaving his newly found family.
1/7 DragonHeart (1996)
Prince Einon (David Thewlis) pledges to Draco the Dragon (voiced by Sean Connery) that his conduct will follow the Old Code in exchange for a sliver of the beast’s heart to save his life in DragonHeart. Einon becomes a ruthless tyrant contrary to his pledge. An angry Bowen (Dennis Quaid), a knight of the Old Code in Medieval times, blames Einon’s behavior on the dragons and goes on a killing spree of the creatures.
Bowen has another encounter with Draco, who convinces him not to kill him because a dragon slayer who kills the last dragon would be out of work. They come to a business arrangement where they scam the village folk (Bowen “kills” Draco repeatedly for money). They then put aside their business deals and join forces to challenge Einon and his evil rule. However, a bond exists between the King and the dragon, meaning that if one dies, so does the other.