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Dungeons & Dragons

1 rating: -3.0
A movie directed by Courtney Solomon

In the mystical land of Izmer, a class of Mages rule by means of magic and otherworldly powers. One Mage, Profion (Jeremy Irons), wants to rule the land by himself and hopes to topple the young and inexperienced Empress Savina (Thora Birch) by acquiring … see full wiki

Tags: Movies, Dramas
Cast: Tom Baker
Director: Courtney Solomon
Release Date: 2000
MPAA Rating: PG-13
1 review about Dungeons & Dragons

Dungeons & Dragons: A Saturday Afternoon B movie at best...

  • Feb 14, 2002
Rating:
-3
Pros: Custom design, bits and pieces of the story.

Cons: Well, ah, can I say the entire movie?

The Bottom Line: Skip it, even the video; it’s not worth the $2.95 to rent it, or the gas to drive to go get it.

Plot Details: This opinion reveals minor details about the movie's plot.

As I slipped the multi-colored disc into the DVD player I wondered to myself why Dungeons & Dragons had not enjoyed the critical acclaim, box-office receipts, and cinematic success Lord of the Rings is now realizing. Certainly, there are legions of D&D fan across the nation every bit as fanatical about the role-playing game as fan of Lord of the Rings are, I thought to myself. Scarce ten minutes into the movie I had my answer! The put it delicately, this movie left a bad taste in my mouth from start to finish.

Here again was a movie with the same ole sad formula: two men, one white the other black; the white character is of course the hero, and the black man is the comic relief, the screamer, the beloved buffoon. Enter the young white pretty girl in distress. She can’t stand the young white hero at first, but by the middle of the movie their lips are engaged in the dance of passion, their eyes are locked in endless enchantment, and their heart now beat as one. Meanwhile, the black buffoon stumbles into trouble that only the white hero can rescue him from. As the movie ends that white hero saves the day, oh it gets tricky for a while but we know he will prevail because he is special, he is the one, he is special, he is the one, but he has yet to realize his potential. Oh brother, give me a break, how tiresome!

Aside from the same old sad formula, Dungeons & Dragons is just a bad movie. The plot is thin and without much imagination, the characters are shallow and with much depth, and I didn’t care about any of them, which is usual for me, because I can usually find at one character to latch onto and root for. Even the special effects were suspect; the computer generated graphics look too much like, well, computer generated graphics; most were gray and soulless. And did I mention the plot was thin and without imagination?

The cast was largely miscast! I did not believe for a moment that Thora Birch—though an accomplished actress—was the Empress; her voice is too thin and her demeanor to demur to convince me the she could hold sway over anyone but herself. And I’m sorry, but Justine Whalin does not have the screen does not have the screen presence in my opinion to carry a film as the leading man. And while Marlon Wayans plays his part with great comedic timing and flair, I kept wondering why he had to be a complete incompetent and willing stooge! Must be that formula thing again.

Most of the characters were played deadpan, or angry and without much life or color. And some I don’t think were ever seen within the role-playing worlds I haunted, or in any of the plethora of book that sprung for the franchise.

I don’t want to leave you with the impression that Dungeons & Dragons was all bad; the explanations of the relationship between humans, elves, dwarfs and dragons in the world of fantasy was touched upon and done justice. And the costumes were bright, colorful and true to the period they were suppose to represent.

I can’t help but think that given the right plot, and direction, the world of Dungeons & Dragons could come alive and do real justice to imaginations of those of use who have played the game in to the wee hours of the night, feasting on cold cola and salty chips. Perhaps the makers of Lord of the Rings would like to it a go.


Recommended:
No

Viewing Format: DVD
Video Occasion: None of the Above
Suitability For Children: Suitable for Children Age 9 - 12
Special Effects: Well at least you can't see the strings

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