Film Corner: I Am Dragon

I Am Dragon

Ok, we're gonna try this again. A reminder that these live tweets go up on my patreon so for the low price of $1-2 dollars a month, you need never miss one!!

I AM DRAGON is a great title, let's try this one. "In the midst of her wedding, Princess Miroslava is kidnapped by a dragon and carried away into his castle on a remote island. Now the only things Mira has are a stone cage and a mysterious young man named Arman but who is he and what is he doing on that island? Miroslava will know the truth too late: loving a dragon will reveal the bitter truth." I mean, I guess the title and the description give the twist away, but that NAME.

"What's your name?"
"Uhh, Arman. I'm a man. Unrelated to my human name."

Oh, this is a subtitled Russian movie. With really TINY subtitles. I wasn't expecting to have to squint.

"They had tears where their eyes should have been" is an amazing line. There's an emotional and REALLY WELL DONE sequence of pretty maidens being set out on boats as sacrifices to a dragon and uhhhh not to beat my own horn but the aesthetic reminds me of my own Tangled Nets in NO MAN OF WOMAN BORN and so I like this a LOT.

This feels like a real movie? Like, with professionals? And not a LARP that got filmed over a weekend? The girl who was chosen and taken by the dragon had a boyfriend. He tracked down the lair, seeking to rescue her, but it was too late. In grief, he slew the dragon and the story has become part of a traditional wedding rite. Now the dragon slayer's grandson Ivan is scheduled to marry the Princess Miroslava.

Mira is a young girl with her head in the clouds and a love of princesses and dragons. She fights with her sister and her dad, but submits with a smile to the (kinda creepy!!) wedding ceremony callback to the earlier sacrifice. Then we SLAM CUT very effectively to her being apparently carried through the rain by a dragon. We don't see how it happened but we kinda don't need to; this works way better than a bad CGI "dragon attacks village" scene.

If the dragon is trying to keep her alive, flying her through freezing rain, throwing her into a stone pit, and leaving her to feral rat-lemurs seems unwise. A boy with a voice like liquid chocolate tells her how to body language at the lemur thingy and she guesses he's a prisoner here too. Oh, Jesus. They used to summon dragons to come get girls with a song. Igor (the bridegroom) demanded the full song in his wedding, which apparently people didn't do anymore. That's what summoned the dragon to come get Mira.

Flashback to the gorgeous wedding ceremony. Igor is distressingly hot. He pulls in her sacrificial boat while everyone sings the Dinner For Dragons song. Dragon arrives for dinner, looking a little puzzled but happy to comply. OH MAN. Igor bravely but frankly foolishly as fuck uses the boat rope to yank Mira back down, but the fall would literally kill her. The dragon has to swoop to grab her with his talons and that's how she got wounded.

Mira wakes and the boy's hand offers her medicine for her wound. She's surprised by how handsome he is and he likes that a lot. Oh gosh, he's an innocent. She has to explain why she doesn't want him to look at her while her shoulder is bare to put the healing salve on. This is going to wreck me, I just know it. Boy begs her not to try to escape--the sea is dangerous, they're on an island--and to just wait for Igor the Dragon Slayer to come get her. Oh oh oh, is he trying to give her back through inaction? MY HEART.

Mira yells at him and calls him a coward. Now she's thinking about using her unreasonably long braid as a rope. I love her. Boy tries to talk to her and asks what she's named him. (He can't remember his name.) She names him Arman because it's "exotic and mysterious like you". My heart. It means "a dream", she says. I'm crying. Shut up. We have hair braid rope, this is not a drill.

Arman and Mira touch hands and then he screams and warns that the dragon is coming. I think maybe he doesn't have control over the transformation? The dragon can't get in the pit where Mira is; the opening is too narrow for him. He...threw her down there to protect her from himself? Arman isn't responding and in a panic she manages to widen the gap between her prison and his. She's going to go find him.

Arman's cavern is huge and there's a dragon on the other side. It tries to eat her and she flees into a narrow crevice. The crevice leads to a high ledge above the sea. Arman appears behind her and begs her to be careful; the drop below them is lethal. Mira is alarmed by the fact that the lemur obeys Arman and something isn't adding up. She backs away from him and falls off the cliff. NO.

Arman's arms wrap around her mid-fall. He threw himself after her!!! Now he's glowing red and transforming. The effects are really wonderful. OH SHIT. He couldn't pull out of the fall so he didn't even try; he just protected her with his body and slammed into the rocks. OUCH. SO MANY HEART FEELINGS OH MY GOD Arman turns back into a human. Mira considers killing him with a rock but she can't. The sea starts to drag him away and she's like ok this works too, but she can't do that either. Sighing, she pulls him to safety.

Mira is taking the absolute piss out of him as she drags him back to his home, and I ADORE HER.

Arman stirs and begs her to "kill the dragon" because it's getting closer. My baby. "Not yet! I need you alive, healthy, and flying!" As a precaution, she straight-jackets him with his own robe. (This movie is so good so far?? This is like an actual good movie??) She erects a tent over them and tends his wounds. She looks for a boat to use and had a yes moment of victory, but then realizes that she's got no way to sail the darn thing.

Arman has a near-transformation in his sleep, and she soothes him down from it. They're clearly very traumatic for him. She dreams that Igor comes to rescue her but realizes she'd rather kiss Arman. When she awakes, food and fire have been left for her so I guess Arman woke up. He's stick fishing in a loincloth, just kill me. She's like, LOOK, this Edward Cullen thing where you protect me but then refuse to talk to me is not as sexy as you think, I expect communication beyond just broody apologies in between bouts of trying to kill me.

I love them both, omg, they are so good, the writing is good, all of this is good.


He's a human who can turn into a dragon, like his ancestors. When he was a little boy, a man came to the island and killed his father. In grief, the boy turned into a dragon for the first time. When he did so, he received the ancestral memories of his people: all the brides they'd taken and killed as tribute. He was horrified and tried never to transform again. When he couldn't hold back the change, he would fling himself into a narrow crevice where a human can get in but a dragon can't get out. He'd restrain himself that way until the change was over. I'm claustrophobic, so the idea of doing that is TERRIFYING.

He had basically mastered self control until the chucklefucks back in the village sang the ritual song. He barely had enough self control to fling her into the narrow pit for her own protection. When they touched hands later, he realized her touch awakens the dragon. And that's why he can't carry her home, and he's very sorry. MY HEART. His plan is to wait for Igor to come collect Mira and asks that they stop singing that Dragon Dinner song please.

OH OH OH a traveler can only reach the island if the girl WANTS him to arrive. (This feels relevant to the backstory death, though. Is there more than we know?) OH, ok, the dragon slayer was able to find the island because his girlfriend, albeit dead, had loved him. Mira doesn't love Igor, she doesn't even know him. He's hot, but that's all we got so far. Arman wants Mira to wait in the safety pit until Igor can get here. She points out that he's still wounded and needs help. He's terrified that the dragon will come out if she is close and she points out that (a) it hasn't, so (b) maybe he's getting better at control.

THEY'RE SO CUTE and obviously it's all overlaid with that very special Twilight chastity kink because even touching his hand is Too Dangerous. Now they're montage scavenging all the ship wrecks for human stuff and she's teaching him games. Mira envies his freedom but he's never left the island his entire life out of fear of hurting someone. His flight was the first flight ever for both of them. Oh god they're so cute and there's still an hour left for everything to go wrong and I'm SCARED. What if I just turned it off here and we pretend that's the happy ending.

This is where I wouldn't survive a fantasy movie. Mira, competent and clever, has packed a just-in-case bag for leaving. I, a fool, would've gotten myself killed by kissing him already. SHE'S HOLDING HIS SLEEVE IN ORDER TO HOLD HIS HAND.

Oh no oh no it's the middle of the night and the dragon is in the cave.

Oh oh oh oh it let her touch its chest and feel its heartbeat.

Oh it was just a dream. Arman asks her what dreams are about. "Sometimes it's something I'm scared of...and sometimes it's something I long for." Crying my dang eyes out.

Arman decides to give her flowers and tell her he loves her, and it's too much: the transformation is starting as soon as he decides. He just manages to stop it. He asks Mira why Igor isn't coming for her. She made a kite and he's teaching her to fly out and I'm crying and they're so pure WE HAVE HAND TOUCHING AND HIS SKIN GLOWED AND HE HAD TO RUN AWAY AND I'M BROKEN.

He's struggling with his dragon and oh no he's trying to figure out how to help her escape since Igor isn't coming?? Oh gosh, Arman is explaining that the whole stolen brides thing is how baby dragons are made. A dragon burns a lady alive and when she's nothing but ash, a baby dragon is left behind. Oh, he found her bug-out bag and assumed the worst, but he thinks she was right that he can't overcome what he is. He wants her to sail away. He climbs into his prison crevasse and turns into a dragon while I cry. Mira sails away, sobbing.

We have twenty five minutes to fix this.

Igor wants to give up the search but the captain refuses. Mira signals the ship with fireworks. (Don't ask.) She tells everyone the dragon died in the storm during her capture. She dresses in a wedding dress while Arman reminisces sadly. Mira's father tells her to follow her heart.

No no no no no he's going to jump no no no no.

Oh oh oh she's stopping the wedding to inform Igor she doesn't love him.

"I love the Dragon!!"




Igor tries to spear the dragon and Good Citizen #47 stops him and punches his lights out, yes, good. Older Sister looking at Good Citizen #47 like aww yeah baby come see me later, and I ship it. Mira tells the dragon that he's used to being feared and doesn't know what it's like to be loved, but she loves him whether he's a man or a dragon. *bawls*



They lived happily ever after and they have a little daughter together and I think she's a good dragon maybe and not a scary death baby.

That was honestly maybe the best movie I've ever seen? It was so sweet and pure and good.

HAPPILY EVER AFTER. He's sexy-transforming so she can go for a flight into the sunset.

It's on Prime, GO WATCH IT. That was definitely the best Beauty and the Beast adaptation I've ever seen and deftly showed how to avoid the Stockholm tropes.


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